Dwight Howard continues to feel the effects of his April surgery to repair a herniated disk.

Howard returned from the surgery ahead of schedule, but he still hasn't played to his pre-surgery form.

"I'm still in that process," Howard said. "People don't understand that. They just come out and see me make a couple dunks and blocks and say, 'Oh, he's back.' But it does take a while for all this stuff to heal. This is not something easy, so I understand that. It will come."

Howard is averaging 17.8 points, 11.9 rebounds, 2.6 blocks and 1.1 steals per game, but the full influence of his play on defense hasn't been felt yet by the Lakers.

"Tingling in my legs all the way down to my feet," Howard said as he described his current state. "There's times when sometimes I really can't even feel my feet. (The doctors) said that's going to happen. It takes at least nine months for you to get strength back in your legs and all that stuff. So I'm still in that process."