L5/S1 Discectomy

L5/S1 Discectomy

3 messages
09/02/2014 at 20:18

Hello, I'm a 34 yo male 6'5" and after 25 years of rugby (second row) hung up my boots 2 years ago after tearing a few shoulder ligaments and got into running, cycling, swimming and then triathlons .  I did 2 nr pool based last year and got my self a wetsuit for Christmas 2013 so planned to do 2 nr Olympic triathlons this year......

Jan 2 woke up with pain the left leg, long story short after 3 weeks of going back to my GP then a trip to A&E I'm now waiting 1 week to have a L5/S1 Discectomy (on BUPA).  Consultant has told me that due to my height it is not uncommon for this type of age/wear & tear injury and rugby this has not helped, he tells me that swimming and cycleing are great and I should do as much as I can but says I need to take the runnning slow and build up if I can.

I have a few questions which I would be grateful for any advice or feedback.

1. Has anyone else had this type of surgery? If so what was it like?

2. What was your recover time like? (I'm told I will be walking out the hospital after 2-3 days but will not be able to drive for 6 weeks

3. Did you get back to running and how long did it take?

4. Any work out/training plans would be great to have a look at?

Currently my left leg is so weak and can't feel my left foot, I've gone from an athletic super Dad (to girls 2&5) to someone who panics when I need to bring in the shopping!!

I so badly want to get the surgery done, take it easy for 6 weeks then get back into the gym (using bar only to start the build up 5kg's at a time), get back on my bike, in the pool and then think about running.

Also, do I now enter a 'special' age group category for people who have had spinal surgery?



14/02/2014 at 23:16

I had a discetomy in my C4/C5 at the start of December. Obviously this isn't quite the same but as it is similar thought I'd answer. Prior to the op I couldn't lift my right arm higher than elbow height.

I was taking a walk in the hospital in the morning when the physio came to get me out of bed. I left hospital the following night after surgery and was doing 2-3 mile walks within 5/6 days.

I guess I was lucky or have a high pain threshold as was uncomfortable at times but nothing serious - not like toothache.

i haven't run yet however planning on a short one tomorrow roughly 10 weeks after the op. I'll probably be knackered after half a mile as not run for 12 week.

Cant help on training plans though.

Good luck with it all and hope yours goes as smoothly as mine has.

06/05/2014 at 18:06

Hi Iain, I just had the same surgery last week. Could I ask how you are progressing?

best wishes


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