I had an L5S1 microdiscectomy 8/29/12. My only symptom was a numb foot and 3 doctors said the surgery would be my best chance for recovery. Now almost 6 months later and I now have excruciating left lower back pain and what feels like hot coals on my knee and thigh…and my foot is still numb. 2nd MRI shows nothing and the surgeon has said he can’t do anything to help. Quality of life is pretty bad. I am only 63 and wonder if this is it for the rest of my life. I did have symptoms in the same area before the surgery occasionally which had never been diagnosed but nothing like this. This is simply awful. I was an idiot to let myself be talked into this operation. Something must have occured in the OR to cause my symptoms (which I started to notice right after surgery.) I am hoping that maybe a nerve got tweaked and will work itself out but after 6 months I am getting more and more depressed. Have never taken any pain meds but may have to consider it if I want to go on living.
For many people, back pain goes away on its own or with nonsurgical treatments. Epidural steroid injections shouldn't typically be used as a first-line therapy for back pain relief, but that doesn't mean they can't play a role in treating pain. But injections won't cure the underlying cause of back pain, and they provide only temporary relief. Unfortunately, in many cases, chronic back pain can't be cured, but must instead be managed, like other chronic conditionsand patients must have realistic expectations of what epidurals can do.