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Post Surgery Tips

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Old 11-25-2008, 05:16 PM   #76
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

This thread is only to be used to post surgical tips. Any other questions/problems should be posted as a new thread on the message board.

Thank you for your cooperation.

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Old 12-05-2008, 05:30 AM   #77
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Re: Post Surgery Tips


If you are only 6 weeks out, get the satin sheets anyway.I didn't discover them till about that time and they've made a huge difference. I got mine at Big Lots for 15$. A small price for the ease they give you. I started with the whole set but found that I only needed the bottom sheet.

I am 13 weeks out and still feel as if there is something stuck in my back. I'm doing PT and getting more flexibility (a relative term!) I feel about 75% normal although I am not really sure what normal will look like in the future. I got my driving rights back at 11 weeks. That was difficult and frustrating and I was glad to have a teenage driver!

Keep us posted on your progress. The sheets really are a big deal.

Old 12-05-2008, 08:42 AM   #78
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

Hi. I got the idea about the satin sheets from this forum and it was the greatest idea I read here. Can't remember who posted it. But it's a must for sliding around in bed. The cotton sheet sets are no good at all. Bought the bed rail that goes under the matress for more ease off getting into and out of bed. That is also a very good help in pushing yourself up when getting out of bed.

( log feeling )That was a question I was just going to ask. I had my surgery Nov 11 ( 23 days ago ) and I have this wierd log in the back feeling and was also wondering when it will go away.

23 days now from a L5-S1 with rods & screws and some kind of cage.

Old 02-22-2009, 01:08 PM   #79
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

a reacher is helpful........

Old 02-26-2009, 09:42 AM   #80
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

Dave, I am so glad you used the satin sheets. I posted that but think I had seen it here before. it is the single best thing I did during my recovery.

I am at 6 months almost post PLIF at L5-S1 and just came back from 6 days at a convention working 15 hour days and my back is great. I too had the Log feeling for about 3 months or so and either I've gotten used to it or its gone away, not sure which. I dont' think I will ever be 100% again but I am 1000% better than I was before surgery and glad I did it.

I still use the satin sheets and did buy a new latex foam mattress in king sized because I kept waking my dear hubby up when I roll over at night. Hope you are feeling better soon.


Old 03-09-2009, 03:01 AM   #81
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

Hi all!
3 weeks ago i had an s5L1 spinal fusion and i agree so strongly about the satin sheets. I could not get by without them. Also a grabber has been one of my favourite things, it helps so much. When I had my wound dressing removed 1 week ago I couldn't wear underpants as it irritated my wound so much so I also found free flowing dresses to be wonderful. Take care all!

Old 03-09-2009, 02:20 PM   #82
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

Tongs and baby wipes are also very useful. They don't tell you this pre op but you will have difficulty wiping the back end for a couple weeks or longer depending on your recovery... they came in handy for me. Took me 17 days post op to be able to do that without them.

Also buy a pair of walking shoes with nice insulation that you can just slip on and go... made that part of the day much easier.

Old 03-10-2009, 05:23 AM   #83
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

You are so right about the baby wipes. I had forgotten about that. Also something you can wipe your face with without bending over to rinse. I used Cetaphil cleanser for that. It went on dry and you can wipe it off with a hot washcloth. Also be very careful about getting down on the floor if you are doing PT exercises at home. The first time I tried them when I was home alone I had a really hard time getting off the floor by myself!

Easy Spirit makes a pair of backless sneakers that have a lot of support but no laces. I still wear mine 6 months later. Oh, and I also wore a lot of black tops. The brace was sooo ugly and wearing it over black made it a lot less obvious. When I got to the place that I was only wearing the brace some of time I alwasy made sure to wear it when i went to crowded places like the mall just so people would have a "danger" signal. I wore it to Church too so that people who i hadn't seen in a while would NOT hug me.

And just for some encouragement for all of you reading this...yesterday I went 3 miles on the elliptical machine in 32 minutes. Not a marathon for sure but the fastest I have ever done. There is hope!


Old 03-10-2009, 11:12 AM   #84
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

I found that getting mens tank tops is a good way to go under the brace and then to wear a black regular tank top over the brace works. You look a little fatter lol, but it hides it when you don't want it to be seen. I am ok with hugging as long as it is not a short person (I'm 5'9"). I'm so excited that you went that far! I'm 18 days post op and still have a hard time with leisurely strolls for more than 15 mins at a time. Congrats!

Old 03-10-2009, 01:01 PM   #85
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Re: Post Surgery Tips

I liked to wear either a soft t-shirt or a turtleneck (depending on the temp) under my brace and a big men's dress shirt or flannel shirt over it, open like a jacket. That way, the brace was mostly hidden, but people who were up close could see it and would be careful of me. I actually like that look anyway, and it made me look trimmer in spite of the brace. Closed, the shirt would have made me look pretty chunky. Open, the opposite.


Old 03-14-2009, 04:27 PM   #86
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Talking Re: Post Surgery Tips

Hi all, it's been 7 years since my surgery and things are going well. One of the things that helped me was to have a clipboard so when you write, you can do so in bed. Also, I used empty boxes to elevate things up a level so I didn't have to bend (while doing paperwork, etc.). Make sure you have at least 1-2 weeks of 'outside' help. Someone to handle all the shopping, laundry, etc....if you can be completely idle longer...your chances of healing are better. Sleep is one of the most powerful ways to heal your body, maybe some herbal sleep help (like valerian root or melatonin) or over the counter pills. The 'picker-uppers' were a god-send for me, can't say enough good things about them. Ice ice and more ice. Once your successful surgery is over, you may want to look into a tens unit (I still use it for long road trips). I still use my tush-cush (pillow with hole out at tailbone area) and they can be bought at most medical supply stores. Gosh, it's been a while since my surgery, but it sure all came back to me quickly. GOOD LUCK YOU YOU!

success story

Old 04-15-2009, 11:41 AM   #87
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sapphyreskyy HB User
Re: Post Surgery Tips

I think the things on the top of my list would be a reacher, sundresses, tank tops, a reuseable ice/heat pack. Mine goes in the microwave or the freezer and has a nice cloth cover. It only cost me like $12 at Walmart and it is a Godsend. Lots of books, movies & puzzle books, once the pain becomes bearable the boredom sets in..The satin sheet idea sounds great, I may be having Revision surgery so I will have to put those on my list...getting in and out of bed is probably the hardest part ...Good Luck everyone

Old 04-17-2009, 06:26 AM   #88
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marshrose HB User
Re: Post Surgery Tips

I agree with the grabber, toilet riser, satin sheets, I wore mens xl boxers that sunk lower than my incision had my mom get a 3pk at target, FLUSHABLE TOILET WIPES- sounds corny, but work wonders, especially as showering at the beginning daily is nearly impossible, so you stay fresh.
I ordered a shower chair with handles, and moved all my pots to high cabinets for easy reaching with no bending. Also- the cascade all in one dishwasher detergent little squares, you just drop it in the tray, no need to bend to close that little door on the dishwasher when someone forgets to put soap in-kids ugh.

I have alittle tray with 1" sides, for my end table so all my pill bottles don't roll off the end table in my bedroom, and a circular wall basket wire tied to my headboard to hold my remotes for the TV so I don't lose them.

I do my grociery shopping online and have it delivered, costs me about 10$ extra, but they shop, deliver it, and bring the packages in the house and leave them on the kitchen counter for me, less stress for everyone else trying to help me with 2 kids and me unable to drive for a long time, prior, and after surgery. I use shoprite.

Gel ice packs, they stay cooler longer, and conform to your back so no pokey ice cube chunks hurting you, ace makes them. I have 3 and trade off with them all day long. I got Ugg slip ons, they are great indoor and out, and of course my cane I always use. I also got a swiffer wet jet, gives me something to do lightly and just glides across the floor in the kitchen, least I feel productive, and no twisting or pushing much at all. I of course live off my laptop with wireless connection, so when I am stuck in bed I can surf away or play some online bejeweled.

Last edited by marshrose; 04-17-2009 at 06:56 AM.

Old 05-14-2009, 03:43 PM   #89
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Question Re: Post surgery tips... question

Thanks for all those helpful tips... I had fusion of L5-S1 a month ago. Dr. says I'm doing ok but I can't sit for longer than 3-5 minutes at a time... I'm worried because I have to go back to work in 3 weeks and I don't know how long is it going to be until I can seat without so much discomfort.
How was this for you?



[QUOTE=2young2bMimi;3786141]I wanted to post this under post surgery tips but the thread was closed. Hope I am not in violation of any ettiqette by starting another thread. Hope some will find this helpful.

Just FYI I am a 41 year old female who has had back pain for years. mother of 3 ages 15-25 with 2 grandchildren. Had microdiskectomy in 2001 L5/S1 and fusion on Sept 2 2008 at L5/S1.



11/2/2008 PLIF Fusion at L5/S1
2007-2008 8 weeks PT and 5 ESI's (ouch)
1/2001 Microdisckectomy at L5/S1
Back pain since I was a teenager, first cortisione shot in 7th grade[/QUOTE]

Old 05-15-2009, 06:02 AM   #90
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Re: Post surgery tips... question


The biggest thing you can do is to create a stand up work station. I work from home and my office is completely set up so I can stand. Staples has a project table in one of their office lines of furniture. I bought some wheels at Home Depot to make it easy to move it is just the right height to stand up. (I am only 5ft 2) I also have a drafting chair that is like a full fleged office chair that you can raise or lower the seat and foot rest for the right height. I invested in a floor mat at a beauty supply shop for cushioning while standing and I always wear good supportive shoes. I often find myself acting as a scribe during meetings and in that case, I will simply put a cardboard box on top of a desk or table and place my laptop on top and type away.

Whatever you do, DONT sit for long periods of time. Do whatever it takes to modify your workstation so you can stand.

Hope this is helpful


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