I just wanted to say hello to eveyryone and let you know that I am finally doing better. I am 6 weeks post op from a Laminectomy and fusion. I am now truly glad that I had the fusion. It's taken me longer than normal, I've been told, because I also have Fibromyalgia. But I walk every day and yesterday got up to 2 miles. I don't have the nerve pain any more, which I had quite bad. I just have to be careful not to bend or twist much. If anyone has questions regarding surgery, please don't hesitate to ask. The board was great to me while I was having to make decisions and were great answering my questions. I hope I can be of help to others now.
Lori, I haven't been around for a while--hubby and I went on a 2 week vacation but I know that you were in severe pain there for quite a while. I am so glad to read that you have had the surgery and are doing well. Take very good care of you and I pray you continue to have an uneventful recovery.
It's good to hear from you, I am pleased to read that you have come to terms with and realized that there [I]is[/I] life after fusion. I am so happy that you are reaping some benefits now and that you are able to sit and give us some updates. I must take exception to your decree however that you have ďtaken longer than normalĒ to recuperate. I donít think there [I]is[/I] normal when it comes to post fusion recovery time. I was on some heavy duty narcotics and in critical doubt some five months after my fusion, but itís all good now.
I would like to congratulate you on your 2 miles, thatís great, and also the blissful feeling of no more nerve pain. I still have some nerve pain in my right leg and I am getting another MRI scan next week to see if anything is visible which may be causing this in addition to other pains that I am still having ([I]nothing that debilitating though[/I]).
However, I can state unequivocally that I am a success story. I will be going to school shortly per vocational rehab, I am able to sit for a reasonable amount of time, I walk for a few miles a day, I live in my pool in the evening, soÖchalk one up for fusion. Donít worry Lorie, it will only get better, and donít worry about normal, you will heal on your own timeline. I must agree with you that this board was instrumental in maintaining my sanity throughout my journey to and beyond my fusion too.
I enjoy reading posts like yours, and I know that you will be an inspiration to and also of great help to others here as well. At the same time I feel the pain, disparity and sorrow of the people who are not as fortunate as you and I. I hope and pray that they find what works for them whatever it may be, chronic pain and the debilitation of spine and back problems are one of the most incredibly difficult things God tests us with.
[I]I know not why this burden is placed upon us,
We must be resolute, strong and have people beside us,
Because alls we can do is alls we can do
To not go insane, scream, cry or be biasÖamen.[/I]
Hey Carl...nice to hear from you too. You are also very insperational and I always learn and laugh from your posts. I also am glad you mentioned the "normal" thing because when the Nurse said that usually people are walking 3 miles by now and don't usually need as much meds. as I have needed, well I felt awful. But luckily I have a great Dr. and he reassured me that everyone is different I was doing fine.
Do you actually swim and if so, when were you able to start that? I have just been given permission to go to the pool and do what I can comfortably. But thinking about kicking and arching my back hurts to think about it. I'm thinking of just walking across the pool at first and then maybe using a kicking board at some point. How far do you walk?
Keep those stories coming!! I love those success stories. I will be having an L4 L5 fusion on the 29th and I'm obviously scared but anxious to get on with life. I have been living with this pain and immobility for three years, I'm sick of it!
What was your pain like before surgery?
Stick around, I'll have many questions afterwards!!!
Hi Christina, before the surgery I was able to limit my pain by limiting my life. To keep the pain down to a min.-moderate level, I did not: lift more than 3lbs., no stairs, no standing in one spot. I was able to go to work (part time only) with those restictions. Then by 2-3:00, my day ended. I was home for the rest of the day recovering. Since I couldn't sit/lay in same position for more than 30 min. I spent the rest of the day switching from sitting, laying on rt. side, laying on lft. side etc. I couldn't go grocerey shopping any more, I couldn't do anything with my family...it was awful. I did that for a year then the nerve pain started to come and by the end, I was getting that pinching pain down both legs, feet and buttocks. Remembering all of that makes me realize that the pains from post surgery are temporary and worth getting my life back. Don't worry, I am not going any where. I got my strength and encouragement from this board when I needed it most. I will be happy to answer any question.
That sounds alot like me. I can limit my pain by doing absolutely nothing at all but then, I would still do something by mistake and be in pain for about a week, like tripping a little bit or something. I cannot go get groceries by myself, can't push the cart. I can't do anything but dishes at home and fold some clothes here and there, my fiance has to do everything. I'm so sorry for that and can't wait to help HIM out! I have been sleeping flat on my back all this time too cause the positioning any other way hurts. I can't get on and off the floor, in and out of a recliner....all that good stuff. I have been going through this for three years and I cannot wait for the surgery. My biggest fear is of course it not helping but I am VERY positive. I just fantasize so much and have been like this for so long that I'm afraid I won't even know how to deal with being okay that I won't be. I dont' know, it's hard to explain. Like I"m so used to being "a mess" that I won't know how to be well. I'm rambling now but sounds like you can relate to me somewhat. Was your disc collapsed and that is why you went for fusion?
I will be looking out for you after my surgery I'm sure. Thanks for answering me, I need those positive outlooks. Good luck to you on your recovery process!
[QUOTE=lfoster21]Do you actually swim and if so, when were you able to start that? I have just been given permission to go to the pool and do what I can comfortably. But thinking about kicking and arching my back hurts to think about it. I'm thinking of just walking across the pool at first and then maybe using a kicking board at some point. How far do you walk?[/QUOTE]Aloha Lorie,
Sorry, that was kind of misleading; no I am not swimming, I have a couple of floatation belts that W/C have provided me, they have proven to be invaluable and I would highly recommend them to anybody that has back problems, and/or does not know how to swim. ([I]Do a search on floatation belts, due to advertising risks I cannot tell you what brand I have, but the ones I have are black with two yellow straps and are listed on a website for $50 + shipping each[/I] ([I]well worth it[/I])). But you will see after your search that there is quite a selection and price range. There are also lots of other toys that you can get that help get you into shape. With the floatation belts you can jog and stretch with very low impact to your body, and even just floating is a joy. I first started aqua therapy about a month and a half after surgery, and I have been in the water almost every day since.
I am up to a very vigorous workout and am in the pool for about two hours every night. I do what I call a slow motion full stride underwater jog that propels me through the water very slowly, I use both my hands and legs; itís a nice workout, I then do a lot of stretching, arm resistance exercises, leg lifts and crunches, all while floating, itís great. I can swim backwards without the belt, however, there has been several times when I have been a little overly aggressive and my body scolded me for it, so I am going to wait a few more months before I take the belts off again, but I will more than likely be using the belts as long as theyíll float.
The kickboard is good for strengthening your core muscles believe it or not ([I]that is if it is a small kickboard[/I]). My PT showed me this when I was in aqua therapy. While sitting in the pool, place the kickboard in front of you and place your hands on top of it, you then press the board into the water and bring it back to the surface slowly, you then do this while turning to the left and then to the right ([I]be careful when twisting to the left and right, you donít want to go to far, also if it causes any pain while pushing the board into the water donít do it[/I]) just a suggestion. Also, like you had said, even just walking in the pool is beneficial, have fun!
I usually walk between 45 minutes and an hour daily. I am in what is called work hardening; it is PT designed more for strengthening, stamina and proper lifting techniques and mechanics. I go 3 hours a day three days a week. It is pretty grueling, but I am definitely reaping some benefits and can tell that I am getting stronger and I have also noticed that the pain is also decreasing.