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iSpine Discuss Does nerve root damage heal? in the Main forums forums; Has anyone here experienced partial or complete numbness/paralysis/severe burning in their legs as a consequence of lumbar spine ...

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Old 08-04-2009, 12:28 AM
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Smile Does nerve root damage heal?

Has anyone here experienced partial or complete numbness/paralysis/severe burning in their legs as a consequence of lumbar spine surgery (without resolution in the short term post-op) ??? If so, does it get slowly better or is it something we have to live for the rest of our lives with?

Have you found anything (beyond Lyrica, Neurontin, SCS, acupuncture, steroids or plain waiting) that actually promoted your nerve healing?

I am 15 months after lumbar surgery which resulted in damage to my S1 nerve root. Sadly, I have not seen significant improvement since being discharged from the hospital.

Thank you for all your replies.
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:47 AM
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eoh,

I had little or no leg pain prior to my 3 level lumbar adr. I woke up unable to feel or move either of my legs. I was started on Neurontin immediately and within 3 days, severe hyper-sensitivity and burning began where anything even grazing either leg caused severe pain. My right leg began to respond and I was able to move it but my left leg, which still remains weak and somewhat sensitive, took another 6 months to support me without crutches. I took dialudid for 6 months as well as 3600mg of neurontin daily.

Pt strengthened my left leg but it is still limited. The sensitivity had diminished drastically, almost completely gone from my right leg and about 80% improved in my left. The upper, outside part of my left leg remains numb to the touch but painful when pressed too hard. My left shin cramps almost daily. My left ankle retains the highest sensitivity/burning - I try not to touch it at all. The only residual remants in my right leg is touching my thigh - I feel it 1-2 inches off.

At the end of the day, my left leg aches but the pain is tolerable with Celebrex or managable with something stronger.

I found some strength return with pt and the sensativity reduced with 6 months of acupuncture, 2-3 times weekly. If financially able, I would have continued the acupuncture.

Vitamin B12 is supposed to be beneficial.

You should have your pm order a nerve conduction test.

Also, please try a different acupunturist. I went to one years ago with absolutely no results. I was reluctant and an unbeliever. 15 months is a long time to suffer as you are. Results are slow, especially with the long term damage, but even today, I can't believe the difference. I was told I would have responded quicker if he got to me sooner.

Other than everything you mentioned, perhaps a neurologist is your best bet????

Good luck, Dale
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Old 08-05-2009, 05:31 PM
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Default scar tissue on S1 nerve root

Post my 2nd spine surgery that failed this was blamed for my horrific burning pain that was bilateral in nature and went from about waist level (in the back) down my legs and into my feet.. it lasted 5 years then sort of leveled off and I hardly had any burning pain except in a few places.

By this time Neurontin was being prescribed for this type of pain and it helped me greatly (started it in '98 and am still on it). Then started Methadone for low back pain in 2001 as well as lumbar ESIs and have had great relief re pain.

It seems that time has helped me out greatly. I do hope with the advance of modern pharmaceuticals and various adjunct modalities you will find relief much soon than I did.

Did the nerve root heal itself? I don't know but I can say this much~ my relief from the pain I had back in the early '90's has really been significant in the last 4-5 years esp. I am very thankful for this relief. I cannot say there is healing there as the scar tissue still is present on MRI however I feel much better and no one has been able to explain that as of yet.

Good luck and please keep us posted

Last edited by Maria; 08-05-2009 at 05:34 PM.
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Old 08-05-2009, 07:13 PM
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It's possible that nerve damage is already permanent, but I frequently see cases that have the doctors saying it's permanent, then they get the source of the compression resolved and the symptoms go away. See JackH's story page on the GPN site.
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Old 08-06-2009, 05:38 AM
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Default Thank you Maria

Thank you for sharing your experience, Maria.

In my case, unfortunately, steroid injections only make me worse instead of helping, and I turn into a mental retard on Neurontin and Lyrica, so I don't take them - I have decided it is better to be a human being in pain than a vegetable with less pain...

Your story is very uplifting and encouraging. It shows again that doctors often don't know a whole lot when it comes to spinal nerve healing, or how resilient nerves can be.
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:19 PM
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How long does it usually take before nerve root compression becomes permanent????
I have had exaserbation of existing nerve root injury from previous microdiscectomy. But the last 6 months It has slowly gotten worse and now I am getting pain in left calf twitching, spasms,and just a general annoying constant buzzing feeling at back of both legs.Plus what i feel is nerve root pain in my back. My issue is bone on bone DDD L5/S1. So I probably have foraminal stenosis. I am scared if I do not get something done soon then the PAIN will be PERMANENT!
Is there a general guideline?
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Old 08-09-2009, 07:20 PM
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A quick answer to your question is no. Some with supposed permanant nerve damage experience marked improvement while others whose nerve damage was short lived, experience something more permanant. The truth is, not enough is known about nerves healing/regeneration. My pm believes I can still improve after 4 years. That would be nice!
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Old 08-31-2009, 12:32 PM
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After my surgery I had burning for 9 months, then got better, then managed to get another herniation and it took ~18 months to get better again (without surgery) and now it looks that I managed to screw-up my back once again - very easy to forget and imagine that your back is ok...
Will see how long it gonna take this time - the only thing that helps me with that burning pain is amitriptylin, no effect neither from neurontin nor lyrica (except feeling like zombie).
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Old 08-31-2009, 03:33 PM
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WSN Nerve Support Formula - Product Information for Neuropathy Treatment

You might want to read this.
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Old 08-31-2009, 10:14 PM
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Default WSN Nerve Support Formula

WSN Nerve Support Formula - did absolutly nothing for me (I took it for over a year) Everybody's different of course. Who knows, it may work for you...
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