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Posted in: Sciatica, and Surgery.

Sciatica... Severe leg pain, wekaness, and numbness in top of foot and big toe.

Started by 1693701864@facebook on 09/08/2011 1:40pm

Hello, I'm 33 yrs old female with 3 children. Going on 4 weeks I woke up unable to walk without severe leg pain ended up in the ER and was told I was probably having a pinched nerve in my disc.

Had an MRI that states I have a L5 bulging disc of 4-5 mm with impegement on the nerve roots.

i'm unable to walk past 3 minutes without severe pain, I have numbeness in the big toe and top of foot with a lot of weakness in my right leg it starts like dragging after walking.

I went to the first neuro and he said to wait it out take Ibuprofen and try Accupuncture.

2nd Opinion said I needed a lumbar Laminectomy. The sooner the better. He felt very strongly about this and said if it was him he would of had it Last week.

Not sure what to do I just know I want to get back to being useful to the kids.

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5 Responses


I feel your pain ~ literally! I injured my back 7/22/2011 and just woke up the next day with severe leg pain. My husband took me to the emergency room immediately and the er doc didn't even touch me or do an xray, he just said "sciatica" gave me a Rx and sent me on my way. Next i went to my gp and he did pretty much the same thing. My brother happens to be a cardiologist and i went to a family function in my drugged and pain-ridden state and he checked me out and said ~ "you have foot drop!" i had no idea what that was but he seemed awfully concerned. He sent me to a neurosurgeon and long story short and one week shy of 2 months since the injury ~~ i had physical therapy but was is so much pain it really didn't strengthen my foot but two weeks ago i had an epidural steriod block and it helped tremendously. well~ it helped the sciatica from my hip to my knee. i had a follow up with my neuro-surgeon yesterday and he wants me to have a lumbar microlaminectomy. i have reservations about any kind of surgery without exhausting all other options.. when i had the epidural, the doctor and nurses all told me that usually it involves a series of 3 blocks. that is the plan i want to take. so ~ we are pretty much in the same situation with the surgeons wanting to do the laminectomy... the foot drop is what they seem the most concerned with but now that i have some relief from the pain i am going to work very hard on strengthening it.


I had the same thing happen to me last year except at some point I experienced total numbness and foot drop. I had the micro lumbar laminectomy and have made almost a 100% recovery. Foot drop is very serious and if you start experiencing total lack of upward movement, head to the ER!! Blood flow to your nerve has been cut off and the longer your nerve goes w/o blood flow, the less chance that it will return after surgery and you will lose permanent movement of your foot.
I was VERY scared about having surgery but the surgery itself was a simple procedure that was performed with very small tools w/o cutting any muscles. I was back to work a week and a half after surgery.
Good luck to you!


I feel that surgery should be avoided for a disc bulge. Epidural steroid injections are wonderful and even a foot drop can recover overtime. Naproxen and Gabapentin are good pain relievers. Good Luck.


So I went for a 3rd opinion the DR started me on PT and Medrol pack i go in for my first ESI. Hoping for the best.


Sandyinalabama, I wanted to see how your are doing?