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  • After ACDF ....when can I swim

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    Old 05-30-2003, 01:10 PM   #1
    Join Date: May 2003
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    fkissam HB User
    Post After ACDF ....when can I swim

    I like to swim. How soon after ACDF is it safe to have the affected wound in the chlorinated water?

    I will try to keep it out of the water as much as possible. In addition, I will try not to use my arms or neck for about 12 weeks.

    However, I would like to do a lower body workout in the swimming pool.

    how soon can I go in?

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    Old 05-30-2003, 02:19 PM   #2
    winged phantom
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    winged phantom HB User

    These are all questions you should ask your doctor... and it will depend on if you are in a collar and also how much you can turn your head, maybe. I used to do water aerobics (deep water), but I know I would have been very uncomfortable going into a pool with my collar on, even just to get wet, unless someone was right with me. In the collar, you're pretty helpless if you slip; you cannot move your head much, and you could do a lot of damage struggling to stand up or get your head up out of the water.

    For things like regular wounds that have to be kept out of the water, I think the time is about 10-14 days. But this is much more extensive than that; the whole area has been opened up (yeah, I know scar tissue forms almost immediately), and the chance of infection would be greater. Some doctors say to keep the incision dry for 7 days; mine told me to keep it dry until I saw him at about 14 days.

    But, really, if you are promising not to use your arms for 12 weeks... how can you do a lower body workout when it's all linked together? (Isolations?) Like I said, ask the doctor very candidly and see what he says. It will depend on how extensive the surgery is, what shape you are in, if you have to wear a collar and what type, and what your doctor says about that type of activity. He's the one whose rules you should follow... (unless ours are more conservative and you like them better... docs don't know it ALL).

    The same goes for the Mederma or Vitamin E... ask the doc, but I would guess that by the time the steri strips come off, you're good to go on that.
    • 12/29/89 C5-6 Microdiskectomy (no fusion)
    • 4/9/03 ACDF C4-7 with plating and donor bone

    Old 05-30-2003, 05:33 PM   #3
    Join Date: May 2003
    Posts: 164
    fkissam HB User

    Thank you for your wisdom on this!

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