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Old 03-19-2013, 05:47 PM   #31
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

I'm surprised your dr didn't go over all of the "donts" before you were discharged. Generally, your discharge papers will have what your dr would like you to stay away from, the discharge nurse usually goes over it too....so you can always call your drs office to be sure with them what is appropriate and what isn't . It's important for you to get up and walk around. You don't want to do it to the point where you are creating more pain or that you get overly exhausted. You will get super tired super quick, and that's ok. Rest at this point is extremely important, your body has a lot of healing to do and that means rest for you. I would avoid any bending , lifting, twisting...you don't want to over use your back. It's just basics...this is a time for you to really take care of yourself, let someone else do the dishes, laundry, vacuuming ( basically NO housework! Lol!) I know for me, lifting a gallon of milk in the beginning would have been too much for me. Whatever you do, take it easy. You MIT be feeling good, so you do more than you should , then you end up paying the price because you're hurting. Glad your feeling so well so so soon after. Just keep taking it easy and you will do just fine!

 
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:39 AM   #32
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Thanks all for the good advice. I am 52 but very strong do I have definitely been overdoing it. Laying around and taking it easy is not something I do very well. Going to do my best to lay still and not get up so much, I know I will be better off in the long run

 
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:22 AM   #33
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

Hello and Congrads on making it home. I had a double lumbar fusion in July. I was in hosp for ten days and once home lived in a bed for a few months. I did PT leg slides while laying down and arm band exercises twice daily as I had no strength to move my own body. Whenever I got.up to bathroom with walker I did laps for 5-10 minutes, then laid back down.
I'm Now 7 months post op. I finally sleep without pain except for occasional time I move just wrong. I was told in beginning no stairs no bending, lifting or twisting. I had to use raised toilet seat and shower chair. I eventually moved off walker to cane. Next was walks outside of Apx 3 houses down and back. I drive now as I have a great round seat that rotates 360. I can sit in church, theatres, etc. I can finally push a grocery cart but If I shop others unload.Therapist had my husband raise Our clothes dryer for good, Apx 12 inches up. I still sit on a chair to be safe If putting something like a casserole in or.out of.the oven. My Dr told me.pre.op my life would be much better but Def different and he was right. I still move slow and am tired also. I lay down once a day when possible but only on bed as PT made me realize my furniture is way too soft/ old so I had to buy rocker/.glides like you use in a nursery or Is have nothing to sit on. He also.told me.prop.that ten lbs post op would be my limit for lifting. I can dust with a four foot long duster handle, do.dishes, Di laundry, wipe counters. My sons do mopping and vacuum cleaning and shower and toilet cleaning still. I see Dr next month. I am very happy at progress but bummed at still twinges of bad pain but only last few seconds. I know my body heals super slow from anything and I hope you take things slow as why ruin this surgery, at least that is how I thought and still do to get through this.
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:26 PM   #34
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Thanks for the replies it helps me. My doctor mostly said to take it easy and I would know when I over-do things, said just walk and lift no more than 5 lbs for 6 weeks. I have been home one week now, I think I have just been getting up and down to much, staying up to long and pushing it to much. Since I lived with so much pain I'm just used to hurting no matter what I do so its difficult to tell if I'm doing to much. I have been walking up to the mailbox daily which is about 5 houses away, walking around the house doing little things with my grabber and sitting up visiting when people come over. I will try harder to lay down more but wont be easy, I will keep in mind I don't want to mess up my healing process. People keep asking me if I feel better than before the surgery, not sure how to reply since I'm not sure if what I feel now is surgery pain and will improve as time goes by. I found a video of PLIF surgery on You Tube and it looked so painful! I try to keep in mind that what I saw would take anyone weeks to recover from.

 
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Old 03-20-2013, 06:50 PM   #35
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

Weeks that turn into months. For me 6 months was a big turning point for me so just Please be careful and patient! I hate to.do nothing also and had to lower my standards for a clean house, etc but trust me, come summer you will feel tons better than you do Now. find joy in little accomplishments like learning to.shave your own legs, LOL. No one can understand this but US who.have also been.through it.
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Old 03-20-2013, 07:16 PM   #36
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OMG..... You said it perfect with the shaving comment. I just needed to hear a few positive words from another person who truly relates to what I'm going through,,

 
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:59 PM   #37
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

Cthom2 Thanks for all your posts and everyone else who is supplying info.
I am in the process of researching L4/L5 Fusion which will most likely happen for me in July. (the insurance negotiations might decide differently). I've been fighting L4 spondy for 3+ years and the PT and injections are no longer effective. Thankfully my condition is very localized and L3 up looks good. It's so helpful to know what to do pre-surg and post-surg. I apprecate hearing everyones journey.

 
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Old 05-30-2013, 04:55 PM   #38
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Hello everyone... Here I am at 11 weeks post surgery, I still struggle with where I should be in the recovery process. I know we are all different but can anyone have some input in how long of periods you were able to sit up? I am having a hard time, I get weak fast. I even bought s kneel down chair , it helps but I am still thinking if I wasn't able to work virtual from my home there would be know way I could make a full day in the office. Sitting seems to be my only issue. I am walking 3 mile stretches 4 times a week and do physical therapy 5 days... I have a hard time defining the "too much" line... How was everyone at 12 weeks? I go to doc this coming Monday

 
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Old 05-30-2013, 05:24 PM   #39
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

Hi. The other experts will answer you better but 3 miles is way too much at one time at this point. I personally (again, i'm not typical at all) was doing just a few blocks with a cane just off walker at that point. I know it's frustrating and you feel like you will never be back to "normal" but you will, I promise, the patience is the hardest part.
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:28 AM   #40
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

I have to agree with workinmom572. I'm 6 months post op and I feel about 85% better. I still have my days and really for the most part its when to say enough is enough and I've pushed my limit. I started back to work around 14 weeks because my job requires a lot of sitting and I was till too uncomfortable. Because I work pt anyhow, it was perfect for me, but when I got off of work I would immediately rest for at least an hour or two to build my strength again. It took me about a month before I was able to not feel tired when I got off of work. But listen to your body, if your tired, relax. Most importantly, when I have something that is planned for the evening, I take it easy during the day so I won't tire myself out. It will get easier, I promise you!!

 
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:29 AM   #41
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I returned to full time work in 6 weeks, I do HR analysis work which requires sitting all the time. I do get to work from home for I hope another three months, no way I could go into an office. I have to lay down often during the day with my laptop and work. My muscles back there seem to be so out of whack. The surgery was great, no nerve issues no radiating pain none of the symptoms pre surgery. I am an avid exerciser so all this muscle pain has me frustrated. Thanks everyone your comments help me feel so not alone, unless you've been through it you can't understand. I have been feeling so disconnected even though I tell myself it's only been 12 weeks... I feel like a big whimp?

 
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:24 PM   #42
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

Oh, a sneeze-it ended it all. I had to learn to sneeze a whole new way and then just started taking an allergy pill daily so I wouldn't sneeze. Gosh, it helps to know others get something like this. My family just thinks I'm rambling or exaggerating.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:30 PM   #43
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

I had to lower all of my standards. I hated laying, not cleaning, sitting here and seeing dust, etc. but it's not worth it. After going through this surgery you certainly want to heal properly. It drags at first, but before you know it it's months more down the road and you will notice each week you can do something a little better or that you couldn't do at all before. Find joy in the littlest things. When I could put on a sock myself I was so happy. When I could shave my own legs-hooray. Any up/down say llike on the toilet or chair without horrible pain, I'd pray and thank God literally.
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Old 08-01-2013, 07:00 PM   #44
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Just an update since my surgery in march of this year 2013. As I stated earlier, I was very frustrated with muscle spasms. At the suggestion of my physical therapist at the Memorial Iron Man sports rehabilitation clinic I decided since there was no more they could do for me to gain strength, I tried Acupuncture... I am very pleased to say that it has done more for me to make me pain free than any og the pain medications prescribed, I now sleep through the nights and my muscle spasm pain is gone. I still struggle with sitting down for log periods of time but I hope that will improve with time.

 
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Old 08-01-2013, 07:45 PM   #45
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Re: Lumbar fusion - post surgery questions

[QUOTE=Cthom2;5206604]Just an update since my surgery in march of this year 2013. As I stated earlier, I was very frustrated with muscle spasms. At the suggestion of my physical therapist at the Memorial Iron Man sports rehabilitation clinic I decided since there was no more they could do for me to gain strength, I tried Acupuncture... I am very pleased to say that it has done more for me to make me pain free than any og the pain medications prescribed, I now sleep through the nights and my muscle spasm pain is gone. I still struggle with sitting down for log periods of time but I hope that will improve with time.[/QUOTE]

OMGosh! So glad you posted this! I am 2 1/2 months post op from lumbar spinal fusion and I'm having trouble in my glutes and si joints with pain and stiffness and thought about trying acupuncture! After reading this I'm certainly going to give it a try!
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