Thanks for your comments. To Kalvin, yes I have second thoughts, I have been second guessing myself ever since the option for surgery came up. I wake up every day and hope the numbness etc. will be gone. I've read about so many people that have more problems after they have surgery.I think well maybe I can just live with this? But in reality I have decided my best chance for full recovery is with surgery so I'm going through with it.
To Helenlegs, Gosh yes I have also noticed my left calf getting smaller, yuck, .It's good to hear about your successful surgery,its very encouraging. I'm looking forward to getting back to "normal".
I had the same surgery over 7 years ago. My calf muscle was very wasted by then as I had the problem on and off then full ON for over 3 years by then. My op was successful and my muscle bulked out again, almost returning to normal. I hated not having matching legs lol, but there is hardly any difference now. It didn't take long to see the improvement either. The numbness, hot, cold and tingleing you describe are all typical signs of sciatica. Hopefully they will go after your surgery, although nerve damage can take a while to improve. If you still have some remaining sciatica like symptoms after your recovery check out piriformis syndrome as it is another cause (although not so well known) of sciatica. I hope all goes as well for you as it did for me. Good luck.
Yes, its a perfectly reasonable option, and it has a pretty good success rate too. The recovery is also a lot easier because they don't have to do so much muscle resection. I had traditional open back surgery with a posterior approach and it took forever to heal.
Since this happened in early March, I assume you've been through all the conservative treatments. Are you having 2nd thoughts? Everybody does.
Take Care and I Hope it goes well for you.