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Return of symptoms
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Return of symptoms

Last July I had a L5-S1 microdiscectomy, from which I recovered nicely after a stormy post op requiring several rounds of oral steroids for continuing pain.  I would say I am about 95% better.
I had a bulge also at L3-L4, but no symptoms.

Now I am starting to have symptoms consisting of the same type of pain in my buttocks, and down the outside of my upper thigh.  (Previous pain was buttocks/down the calf and tingling of the outer 2 toes).  No tingling this time.  
How long should I let this go?  It is not nearly as severe as last time.  If I have to have surgery again, can they again do the microsurgery, or would it be more extensive.  I am very active and walk 2 miles most days.  Should I continue?  I notice a little more symptomatology on days I walk.  
Thank you.
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I would let your surgeons know that you have return of the pain.  Usually, if a patient doesn't get better immediately post-op and is gradually improving over a period of weeks to months, then we let it go if they have intermittent pains.  However, if you were already getting better but are now having return of symptoms, yuo should let someone know just in case there's something wrong with the hardware (if any was placed), new disc problems, or return of the old problems, etc... For now, be careful.  Use common sense in all activities and refrain from heavy lifting (nothing more than a gallon of milk), contact sports, rigorous exercise.  Walking should be ok, but take it easy.  If you're tired or in pain, just stop and rest. Don't push yourself, especially when you're not quite sure what's happening in your back.

As for your surgical options, this would be better answered by your surgeons as they are familiar with your case and the prior surgical procedure.

Give your surgeon's office a call and just let them know that you have return of your symptoms.  They may want to evaluate you further with re-imaging or exam. Good luck.
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