100 lb. Club - Exercising with a severely herniated disc? I need surgery but don't want to aggravate

02-03-2009, 04:22 PM
Hi all--- although I'm young, I recently found out that I need surgery (a diskectomy) on my lower back. I have a severely herniated disk in my L4 and L5 that has a free fragment... surgery might be around April, I'm waiting to hear from a 2nd opinion in 2 weeks.

Anyhow... I have had severe sciatica for one year until all of a sudden I was in AGONIZING pain for a week and out of work... had to go on steroids and pain killers to be mobile... the pain finally went away (all of it, for the most part) but has been replaced by numbness--- I can't feel my right ankle and the entire top of my right foot. My reflexes are severely affected as well...

Anyhow--- I am TRYING to lose weight and I would LIKE to put exercise into it, but I'm so deadly afraid that I'll go from numb to AGONY if I do something stupid. I can live with the numbness for now, and if that means I can't exercise, than so be it.

I was thinking about Yoga or Pilates, b/c my physical therapist for when I had sciatica was all about strengthening your core to take the pressure off your back...

Basically... what can I do? Should I even bother and risk throwing it out again or just wait until the surgery? The Dr. is very serious about my back and he says I have "the winner" of herniated discs... ::sigh::

Any help?

02-03-2009, 04:28 PM
swimming is great exercise. if you don't have a pool where you live, many community centers or YMCA's have them.

check with your doc first, of course....

feel better soon!

02-03-2009, 04:34 PM
My suggestion is that you NOT do any yoga or pilates until you are given clearance by your physician. You might benefit from physical therapy while you are awaiting your surgery, but again that would be on your physician's referral. You might also benefit from gentle exercises, like walking. But treat your body gently right now. You could easily injure yourself doing yoga or pilates in your current condition.

Goddess Jessica
02-03-2009, 04:39 PM
Sciatica definitely improves with yoga but this is no longer sciatica, this is a herniated disc. I think you've got to tap your doctor for this one.

02-03-2009, 04:41 PM
There are things you can do...but, talk to your doctor for the ideas.

02-03-2009, 08:49 PM
I have 3 slipped discs (can't be fixed with surgery) and sciatica, by doctor said that walking ( I do Walk Away The Pounds) and the use of a stability ball (balance or body ball what every you call it) would so wonders and it strengthens your core. Well it does my back does not hurt one bit when I work out with these things. But I would talk to YOUR doctor.

02-03-2009, 09:25 PM
My boyfriend had a herniated disk and he had to get an operation within a few days of diagnoses. It was very serious and he could have been paralyzed. I'd try not to do anything to aggravate it and look into surgery ASAP.

02-04-2009, 08:34 AM
Gosh, you really have to ask your doctor about this. Even swimming might be the wrong thing to do. Please see your doc.


02-04-2009, 08:46 AM
Definately get your doctor to refer you to a phyio therapist. Together they can work up a plan of what you can do. Might need to involve a spotter buddy who helps keep you safe, a brace etc. Please get the professionals to put a plan together for you!