RenCurtisParticipantNovember 12, 2019 at 8:42 amPost count: 8
Hello, I had an L5 S1 fusion with hardware September 2017. I healed extremely quickly, enough that my surgeon noted it should go in the medical journal (I’m not sure what that is and I didn’t ask.) I have not had much of an issue with pain until I fell a few weeks ago on October 17th. About a week our so before that day, I began to notice that I would trip and catch myself from falling several times a day. It was as if I was having a hard time picking my foot up all the way to take a step. My husband helped me get up and as we walked the one block home, I felt alright aside from my knees being scuffed up and bruising. The rest of the day, I took it easy and noted that I didn’t really have much pain but a little in my back. I woke up the next morning and could barely get out of bed. When I stood up from my bed, I almost collapsed because of the amount of pain I was experiencing in my left leg just below my buttock down to the back of my knee. It almost felt like the pain when you have a torn muscle in the groin. I couldn’t walk. Over the course of a couple days, I discovered I could walk backwards with my body in a 90 degree to the floor. The pain was very minimal in that position. But the moment I would stand up correctly, the pain would almost drop me to my knees. Another odd thing, I could walk sideways in an almost upright position without a lot of pain. As it is now, I can almost walk normally (although I have a bad limp as if my left leg is shorter than my right leg) but I have bouts of intense pain throughout the day that still feels like a torn muscle below my left buttock, that pain goes down my leg to behind my knee and my feet feel like they go half asleep and tingle just like they would do before I had surgery and I have a very hard time walking. The area where the incision from surgery is located is swollen although that is not a new thing ( it has been this way since the surgery) but with each new day, the area may be swelled up more or may not be as swollen as the day before. I have not gone back to my surgeon as I was hoping it wasn’t a big deal and I would heal. That does not seem to be the case as of yet. I’m 45 and beginning to think I may not be able to pick up where my life left off before surgery.Donald Corenman, MD, DCModeratorNovember 17, 2019 at 10:09 amPost count: 8459
You note “About a week our so before that day, I began to notice that I would trip and catch myself from falling several times a day. It was as if I was having a hard time picking my foot up all the way to take a step”. This sounds like foot drop which typically originates from an L4 or and L5 root compression.
You then note “pain I was experiencing in my left leg just below my buttock down to the back of my knee” the next day. This is typical for a large disc herniation which commonly does not hurt the first day after the herniation but due to inflammation, hurts on the second day.
Since your fusion level is L5-S1, I would expect your L4-5 level could then herniate. With motor weakness present, you need an MRI soon and probably a microdiscectomy.
Dr. CorenmanRenCurtisParticipantNovember 18, 2019 at 2:12 amPost count: 8
You’re an angel, Doctor. Thank you for your reply. I will follow up with my surgeon this morning. I appreciate you taking the time away from your day more than you may know.Donald Corenman, MD, DCModeratorNovember 18, 2019 at 11:04 amPost count: 8459
Please keep in touch with the forum to let us know how you progress in the medical system.
Dr. CorenmanRenCurtisParticipantNovember 20, 2019 at 4:37 pmPost count: 8
I certainly will do that. I do have an appointment scheduled for December 12 with my surgeon and I’m hoping I make it that long. Beginning yesterday, my legs get so weak and hurt so badly that they almost totally give out on me while ambulating short distances in my home. I don’t dare leave my house for some exercise as I have been trying to do everyday.
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