L5/S1 herniation- less pain, more tingle (good or bad)?
Briefly, I had a herniation at l5/s1 in 1999 when I was 25. I did nearly 2yrs worth of therapy, epidurals, etc. to little avail. Finally when I stopped virtually all treatment in 2002, besides doing my own McKenzie exercises, the pain slowly went away.
Now, leading up to September 2011, I had had several bouts of back pain- stiffness to the point of not being able to bend over more than 10degrees. These would come and go and were generally a month or so in duration. Then in September it became full-time stiffness to the extreme. Slowly that morphed into a strong burning pain at the left side of the belt-line and then into pain in the left side of my butt. MRI showed "large left paracentral disc extrusion with mild cephalad and caudad migration... A coexisting disc bulge causes mild bilateral neural foraminal narrowing."
Then in January I started to get what felt like a very, very 'sore' left hamstring and calf. Now the pain in the back, butt and hamstring is virtually all gone but my calf has no strength (can't stand on tip-toes w/left foot at all) and the outside of my foot is tingly 100% of the time.
I guess I am blessed in that I have very little pain compared to what many, many have, but is the tingling calf/foot better than the pain from a recovery standpoint?