It has been 1 week since surgery. I feel great with a mild soreness in the shoulders. I could not get a straight answer from the surgeon about why I can't go to work. He said I don't have to wear a collar, can only lift up to 10 pounds, and can go where I want and walk around. I feel fine and my job does not require any more activities than what he said I could do. So why can't I go sit behind a computer at work?
Congrats on feeling good. Single level ACDF people usually feel good quickly. Look, don't be deceived - you had major surgery. Give yourself at least two weeks for the incision to heal properly and for the bleeding and trauma inside the neck to have time to recover. This will also give time to see if any post surgical things crop up. What type work do you do? The medical standards for this surgery is 4-6 weeks, if you feel good after 15 days, then ask surgeon to give you part time release and let you try to work your way back into workplace. Better to recover now, than create a bad situation for yourself and need another surgery in the future! Surgeon wants success for you (and him).
You have to give yourself time to heal. The neck is very delicate and the wrong movement or strain can set you way way back. These days often incisions are minimal and bracing is minimal - but that doesn't make the procedure minor. If you don't take the opportunity to heal you may never have total recovery. Right now you don't want to be doing driving, straining your neck at all at a desk (yes, computer work is straining your muscles somewhat and can be an awkward position for your neck to hold for long periods), and need to listen to your body.
I am 5 days post ACDF and I pleaded with my surgeon to let me back to work in 2 weeks. I said I felt able and was only going to be working part time at a desk job. Apart from being worried about redundancy, my jobshare colleague being on maternity leave and leaving my colleagues in the soup, I love my work, am easily bored and can't wait to get back.
However, my consultant told me in no uncertain terms that he hadn't done 2 hours specialist work on me for me to ruin it all by going back to work under any conditions. He told me I wouldn't be insured and it was "no nuthin!" for at least 6 weeks.
Part of me knows this makes sense so I couldn't really argue with his reason.
Hope you continue to recover well and don't be sitting too long at that computer!
You know I felt pretty good at 3-4 weeks post op, I had some pain but compared to preop it was better. I started doing little things & before you knew it I had an increase in pain. I am 8wks this week & the pain has not gone back down. My problem has its own set of complications & I realize everyone is different but I wish I could go back to that 3wk mark & do it over. I am not sure if its the small things I attempted but I would do nothing if I could go back. I would not chance it. Its just not worth it. Good luck, Sammy
Thanks for the replies. I'm very impatient and always try to do to much, probably why I got hurt in the first place. The doctor's attitude made it seem like I'm telling you not to go to work, but doing everything short of running and lifting weights would be okay.