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update on back surgery done Oct 2002

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Old 03-11-2003, 03:58 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 54
tc128 HB User
Thumbs up update on back surgery done Oct 2002

Just wanted to update you and give those who are contemplating or scheduled or require surgery.

Am caring for someone who had L3-L4-L5 laminectomy and fusion done. No bone was taken out of the iliac crest as there was enough bone material removed to provide the fusion for the 6 titanium rods and screws to form the cage.

The first two weeks were very slow and steady. One month after, climbing up a full flight of stairs one step at a time was manageable, but still sleeping on the ground floor, (bedroom upstairs). After 6 weeks was able to go out for half hour walks, but still needed the afternoon nap to rest the back. After 2 months was able to take aquafit classes. Neurosurgeon said the fusion was going as expected and was showing remarkable recovery, the best that an ideal recovery can just about get. Now, going up and down stairs is routine, but slow and sure.

Started to drive in late January, and able to go out shopping and do more independent things like go out for long walks with the dog; up to an hour or so. Can now bend down and pick things off the floor, but very gingerly though.

The evenings still get the back a little heavy and resting on the day bed still does wonders to the back.
Some heaviness in the back is still present, but no "pain". Still not ready to tackle ballroom dancing, but is scheduled for sometime in April (6 months)

For those who are very nervous about impending surgery dates, this is very normal: Am I going to get through this okay? What happens if it doesn't get any better? What if....? All thoughs fears are normal; but having faith in your neurosurgeon and yourself plays a big part of your recovery.

Setting goals to tackle certain recovery milestones gets you to the road to recovery much faster. eg: I will climb up a whole flight of stairs in 4 weeks, I will go back and start swimming in 3 months, etc.

Last summer was the most difficult time for me, seeing someone in such pain, and not having the power to do anything about it. I cannot imagine how any of you cope, but have a strong admiration for all of you.

Best of luck to all of you and those who care for you. Be strong and have a positive mental attitude. Someone somewhere is looking out for each and everyone of you.


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