8th weeks post lumbar discectomy but sore . anyone knows what happen?

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I am 8th week into my post l1s5 lumbar discectomy but still my back can be tired and sore at certain time of the day (morning stiff back, lunch time- back pain and then night). I was told that it will take time to heal but the thing is my upper back is the part that is becoming sore and tired. The neurosurgeon told me that my upper back was caused by muscle spasms and not another disc protruding. I am wondering if anyone has the same issue before and how long it takes to heal. 

I sleep on my back and suspect this might have cause the upper back pain too. Thanks.

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  • Posted

    Hello… Take heart and don't be too worried. Eight weeks is really a very short amount of time. I am four months out and still have soreness. My surgery went very well and my neurosurgeon told me to think even 6 to 8 months.  Try to practice good posture… We all tend to slump a little when we have pain. 

    Also be careful if you're having physical therapy for follow up. Don't let them work you too hard. Some can do that though not meaning to hurt you. I have found that walking seems to be the best exercise for me. I do some of the basic stretching exercises to. After my surgery, my neurosurgeon told me the best thing was to walk, and walk more as you can.

    I also ride the exercise bicycles and have a small semi-recombinant one at home. But not too much weight.

    Hope this helps. I see you haven't had a response yet. Take care and stay positive and stand up straight! ;-)

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  • Posted

    Forgot to add, I still get very tired too. Any type of procedure is a trauma to the body, so that also takes time. If you sleep on your back, try putting a pillow under your knees so that your legs aren't totally straight. That takes some pressure off. I am a side sleeper so use a pillow between my knees that way too. I think it was three months before I could roll over on my stomach without pain.

    If I think of anything else, I'll post.

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    • Posted

      Dear Donnal thanks, your comments helped. I was relieved to know that I am not unique or are in serious problems. I am seeing my neuro today just to follow-up to make sure there isn't anything seriou as it wasw so sore last week. Please do advise if there are other developments I should expect. Hope you have a full recovery soon.

       

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    • Posted

      Are you back at work? I was off work 14 weeks after my first op (same one as you) and didn't sit at all for first 6 weeks. This helped me considerably and I was able to resume normal activities within 5/6 months! Don't be too hard on yourself, whether you like it or not you've just had major surgery. The muscles, ligaments and disc take time to heal so be patient. 
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    • Posted

      Hi all, I recently changed my mattress, and had another MRI. It appears that it is muscle spasm. So with the new mattress, I am definitely improving a lot in terms of pain, although I still get soreness here and there at different time of the day. Numbness on my left leg is still around. 

      Hi Scott, I had started work from 9th week. Really don't have the luxury to take extended leave. Crossing my fingers that I recover ok as I do get weak and soreness by the end of the day.

      Thanks for sharing with me your experiences.

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    • Posted

      How are you?

      I'm at six months now. My neurosurgeon three-month follow-up was bumped to January 8. He requires a new x-ray before each appointment. Progress is very slow but definitely in the right direction.

      Physical therapy seems to be more painful than doing my stretches and walking at home. I know I need to build core strength, but when the therapist has me do more sets of some things, I am in pain for a couple days afterward. My common sense tells me this isn't especially the surgeon about it this week. I tell the therapist and don't do anything that causes more pain...especially nerve pain. 

      Happy new year to you… We are definitely going to have a better one!

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  • Posted

    Just me checking in again. Sounds like you're coming along pretty well. A new mattress! They are one of the most important things in our lives, especially now! I see my surgeon on December 16 for my six month check up. Still tweaks and twinges but compared to my three month mark, way better.  I expect the fatigue to hang in there for a while. Some days I'm just so tired, but then I am 66..

    I have much to overcome with correction of spondylolisthesis and fusion of L4, 5 & S1, which is actually a sixth lumbar disc for me since not connected to the sacrum. I feel very fortunate. I work part time at home now and and patient.

    You'll be fine and so will I!

     

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  • Posted

    Hi. I agree with DonnaL. Patience is key. Remember that your back didn't get that bad overnight therefore recovery won't either. I am a little over 10 wks post L4-L5 Laminectomy and fusion and graft. Still a bit stiff in the am, but I have permission to drive, walk as much as I like and exercise can be swimming and cardio with mild leg weights beginning at month 3. Compared to the pre operative pain, this is heaven, so I am not complaining. Give it time. We all heal differently. Mine was a "modified procedure" in that since my problem was single level, the neurosurgeon felt that he did not need to open my muscles and cut the tendons in as wide an area in and around the site, therefore immediate relief and a somewhat shorter recovery time. In no way does that mean my results and someone having the larger multi level fusion will not even out toward the end. (His words). Hope all goes well. Patricia
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