Dear Leg Pain Investigator,
In addition to your disc injury, you may be experiencing a form of nerve compression called a radiculopathy.
A what? Sounds like a mouthful, but let us explain. In the spine, intervertebral discs live very close to important structures (the spinal cord and spinal nerves). If a disc bulges or herniates, it may put pressure on and injure these neighboring body parts. If the beginning (or root) of a spinal nerve (called a "radicle" from the Latin word for root) gets compressed, a radiculopathy occurs.
What does a radiculopathy feel like? Very much like the traveling discomfort you describe. Many spinal nerves control the motion of and sensations from your arms and legs; if these particular spinal nerve roots get compressed, a person may experience symptoms that travel to these body regions, including feelings of numbness, weakness, burning, tingling, and/or sharp shooting pain.
The infamous syndrome of sciatica—along with its classic leg complaints—is often caused by a radiculopathy.