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Old 07-01-2006, 02:06 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: LAs Vegas
Posts: 12
Fiesty47 HB User
Wink anterior posterior lumbar decompression and Fusion L5s1

Hi
I am 47 and by the end of the week I will be having an anterior/posterial lumbar decompression and fusion L5S1. Can anyone tell me what life will be life for the first couple of weeks home from the hospital? How long of a hostpital stay will I have? I was also wondering will I be ready to teach starting August 23? I know everything is fine and I have a great doctor but I am a bit nervous. Any feedback postive or not will be helpful. As a teacher I beleive the more information I have the less afrain I will be. Thanks

 
Old 07-01-2006, 06:28 PM   #2
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Northeast USA
Posts: 568
zeroman HB User
Re: anterior posterior lumbar decompression and Fusion L5s1

everyone is different so your experience will be different from mine.

I had a double fusion from the front 11 days agio (see sig) and I can tell you what I am going through.

you will be in the hospital probably 4-5 days (I was in for 6) and the front incision will still be sore when you get home (it still is but not as bad). youll have good drugs in the hospital so its not too bad. about the 3rd day I had fairly bad gas and cramps as my digestive system woke up. they lasted less than a day and the best thing you can do for them is walk it off. the more you walk the better off youll be. theyll have you walking the 2nd day most likely.

walking was fine, its just transitioning from lying down to getting up that hurt. once up I walked all over.. I explored my little corner of the hospital at least 4 times a day for 10-15 minutes each time and I felt better after walking.

I felt fine when I woke up in recovery, I couldnt believe it was done. I was uncomfortable the 1st night until they adjusted my pain pump, then it was hit the button and zzzzzzzzzzz. I was on the pain pump 5 days and wasnt in any severe pain, just uncomfortable.

once home youll spend most of your time in bed. remember to walk several times a day. youll want someone to get meals for you the 1st few days youre back but by the 4th day home I was getting most things myself. my church has been wonderful bringing me food and such, I freeze it and just nuke it when I want something.

sleep for me was and still is a bit erratic. youll want reading material and movies to occupy your time as you wont want to do much.

ask your doc for your pain med script before you go in and get it filled so it will be waiting for you when you go back. you wont want to do it on the ride home.

hope this helps. I was very nervous about it before going in but it really wasnt that bad. not fun by any stretch but really youll be glad you have it done. my leg pain is gone and I noticed that the 1st time I walked. just do everything the docs and nurses tell you and youll be home before you know it. everyone says the 1st couple weeks are the roughest and I can tell you theyre rivght so far, the pain is less each day.

any questions be sure to post.

good luck!
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back surgery in JUN 06 - two level ALIF (L3-4-5) with cages and BMP - SUCCESSFUL!

 
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Old 07-02-2006, 09:35 AM   #3
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Missouri
Posts: 2,128
carol632 HB User
Re: anterior posterior lumbar decompression and Fusion L5s1

Hi, and welcome to the group. It's a big surgery you have ahead of you and I just want to urge you not to push for going back to work so soon. Six weeks is not, in my opinion, nearly enough time to heal well enough to take on those long days standing on your feet. And sitting for long periods of time is just as bad if not worse. Truthfully, you would probably be wise to go back part time after 8-10 weeks and then try full time when you think you can handle it. Talk to your doctor about it, too. One thing you don't want is a set back.

People are always so disappointed to find that they are not nearly as ready for full time work as they had been led to believe. Listen to your body.

Carol
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2 lami's, 3 fusions
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Old 07-02-2006, 04:01 PM   #4
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Berryville, Virginia
Posts: 2,382
Justoneofus HB User
Re: anterior posterior lumbar decompression and Fusion L5s1

Welcome the to boards!

I will be 11 weeks posterior fusion at L4/L5 on the 4th of July! I am a pretty healthy person for the exception of my back injury 3 yrs ago. Very active person by nature. I thought I would be one of those that would quickly bounce back and be back at work part-time at 4 weeks. Prior to surgery I asked my surgeon about this.. and he said.. it's possible but unlikely, more like 6 weeks to 3 months, depending on me. I set my target return date with my boss at 6 weeks. I am a paralegal.

I was back at 7 weeks, on 1/2 day two days a week to start off. And a good thing.. as I was really sore and it took a bit of transitioning getting back into the swing of things. I still can not get into the files below my knees and putting paper in one of the copiers is difficult. But I have a great office environment and everyone is ready to help me whenever I need it. I keep a grabby at the office so I am not constantly asking for help each time I drop something etc. If you don't have a grabby.. it's by far the most helpful tool for post surgery patients. I have TWO!!

You will NOT be able to bend down and get things for sometime.. nor will you be able to carry anything of weight either. So you will need assistance on getting your teaching materials to and from for awhile. So that is something to be thinking about when you return to teaching.

I am just now able to work a full week at work, but it really takes a toll on me. I am just beat at the end of the day, which is not normal for me. But things are progressing, and I am in PT which just started recently a few times a week.

Expect to be really sore from the surgery, but considering the pain that you have been in prior to, it's all seems quite tolerable. Just communicate any woes you have with your doctor post surgery. Don't be afraid to call and explain any symptoms or pains you have.. as they are used to having post surgery patients call them with issues.

Hopefully you will have someone at your home post surgery to help out with things. I also hired a cleaning service to come once every 2-3 weeks for general cleaning to help keep things under control until I can do it all again myself.

Well gobs of others will post here too and offer some great advice. There are many of us seasoned veterans as well as newbies all here to share our stories with each other. Best wishes on your surgery.. and take care. Tammy

 
Old 07-03-2006, 12:14 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Lakehurst,New Jersey,USA
Posts: 185
Rushtonbear HB User
Re: anterior posterior lumbar decompression and Fusion L5s1

Hi which is worse pain,front or back?I think the front be too much cramps,I can't stand those.I guess back delivers nerve pain,so guess neither surgery is fun.I'm not working anymore,I had enough.not risking further trouble,welfare here I come,ha!Hope you guys get better

 
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