I found this site thru a search engine and amazed to find so many others enduring the pain on this issue. I had a microdiscectomy performed by an ortho. surgeon for a herniated disk at L5, S1 approx. 1 year ago. Surgery went well and as promised, felt instant relief (beyond normal surgery pain). No issues for 1 year and then "bam”, out of nowhere, it's all back again. Same disk, same excruciating pain in the left leg, which leaves me unable to do much of anything except, lay in the bed in discomfort. This time around I went to a Neurosurgeon and had another microdiscectomy performed approx. 2 weeks ago. Pretty much same process as last time and started on my same road to recovery. Other than a bit more leg numbness this time things seemed to be going well - or at least I thought. As of 2 days ago I am in horrible pain and feel like the surgery never took place. Although I haven't been back to the doctor yet (its Saturday, patiently waiting for Monday) I feel like I know this pain up, close and personal. I think the disk is herniated again. Is this actually possible? I have called the doctor who has prescribed some steroids to assist and will go back for MRI on Monday. OK, my question in this. My doctor mentioned prior to my surgery this time around that if this doesn't do the trick I may have to consider a fusion or artificial disk, but first attempted another mircodisc. since I didn't have any "issues" for over 1 year. I seem to be more intrigued by the artificial disk and wanted to hear some feed back on it. Pros and cons. Or hopefully somebody who actually has artificial disk in the L5,S1 and your valuable feedback.
I gone down the same road as you in the past 10 yrs, discectomy, 2X then after continued pain due to broken bone due to the laminectomy, I had fusion in 2007. It was a long recovery period, however artificial disk replacement is only for one level at this time.
I found great pain relief from the fusion. it stablized my back to the point that i have done 5 small triathlons since then. I am now recovering from a micro foraminotomy 2 weeks ago, and am confident that I will eventually return to a pain free life.
Once the back is compromised, we have to be super careful, core stabilization exercises and care with our actions. something i always seem to forget.
don't be to scared of replacement or fusion, they have come a long way in providing pain free life if there are genuine mechanical defects. I should have avoided one discectomy and just had the fusion then. but hindsight is always 20 20.
Good luck with your prognosis, trust the Dr, (I hope you are seeing a neuro Dr)and be super careful, restrict, bending, lifting and twisting. Ice alot to relieve swelling always helps me.
good luck and feel better.
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