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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

I had sciatic pain for the better part of six years, but not due to a disc. I had severe central canal stenosis and spondylolisthesis at L4-5. Due to the instability caused by the spondylolisthesis, my first surgery was a fusion. While the fusion was medically successful, it did not resolve the sciatic pain, so I kept looking for answers. So I went through a couple more years of seeing various specialists, many injections and diagnostic nerve blocks while doctors tried to figure out why the MRIs showed the nerves were clear but I still had radiculopathy in both legs. I ended up having a foraminotomy at L5 which helped for three weeks, followed by more running around looking for answers...and finally a fusion from L3 to S1 with some reconstruction of the facet joints at L3 followed by a very long recovery (18 months).

My advice would be to grit your teeth and try to wait it out. Continue with the prescribed back and core exercises and avoid bending or twisting at the waist and lifting or carrying anything more than about 10-15 pounds. Try not to sit for longer than an hour max. before getting up and moving around a little. Sitting puts 30% more stress on the discs than any other position.

Also try the following exercise which is good for any back.

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