Question: How Painful Is Spinal Fusion Recovery?

What are the long term effects of spinal fusion?

Damage to a spinal nerve, which can cause weakness, pain, and bowel or bladder problems.

Additional stress on the bones adjacent to the fused vertebrae.

Persistent pain at the bone graft site.

Blood clots in the legs that can be life-threatening if they travel to the lungs..

How should I sleep after lumbar fusion?

The best sleeping position to reduce your pain after surgery is either on your back with your knees bent and a pillow under your knees or on your side with your knees bent and a pillow between your legs.

What happens if you bend after spinal fusion?

Logrolling prevents excessive bending, twisting, and straining of your spine which could disrupt the surgical repair. Avoiding excessive bending, twisting, and straining will protect your fusion while it heals. Bone healing typically takes up to 3-6 months to occur.

How long do you wear a brace after spinal fusion?

Depending on the surgery and your general condition, you may only have to wear your back brace for two weeks or until your first post-op visit. Lumbar fusion surgery patients will have to wear their brace for a longer period of time, up to three months, especially as they return to work and to normal activities.

Can you live a normal life after spinal fusion?

Think about the fact that your bones will not fully fuse (after spinal fusion surgery) for 12 to 18 months. Yes, you’ll be back to some semblance of “normal” well before that. But limit those elevated expectations and be real. For quite a while, you’ll have good days and not-so-good days.

How do you poop after back surgery?

After surgery, you should also plan to take a stool softener, such as docusate (Colace). A fiber laxative, such as psyllium (Metamucil), may also be helpful. Purchase a laxative or stool softener before your surgery so that you have it available when you return home.

What can you not do after spinal fusion?

Avoid strenuous activities, such as bicycle riding, jogging, weight lifting, or aerobic exercise, until your doctor says it is okay. Do not drive for 2 to 4 weeks after your surgery or until your doctor says it is okay. Avoid riding in a car for more than 30 minutes at a time for 2 to 4 weeks after surgery.

What is life like after spinal fusion?

Recovery time for spinal fusion surgery varies significantly from patient to patient, but the average spans between three and six months before the patient is back to their daily routine; working, traveling, and even exercising with more freedom and less pain than they could before the surgery.

Is spinal fusion surgery painful?

After spinal fusion Depending on the location and extent of your surgery, you may experience some pain and discomfort but the pain can usually be controlled well with medications. After you go home, contact your doctor if you exhibit signs of infection, such as: Redness, tenderness or swelling. Wound drainage.

How long should I use a walker after spinal fusion?

You will need an assistance device such as a walker or cane for the first week; however, you should strive to limit the use of this device after the first two to three weeks when you are on stable ground. By the end of the first month, you should be able to walk one mile without your assistance device.

Can you sit in a recliner after spinal fusion?

It is okay to sit while eating and for half an hour at a time. Recliners are better than soft-backed chairs. Do not lift more than 10 pounds for the first 4 weeks after surgery. It is okay to climb stairs.

Can I lay on my side after spinal fusion surgery?

Sleep Comfortably It is generally OK after back surgery to sleep in whatever position is most comfortable. Some prefer to sleep on one side or the other with a pillow between their knees and/or behind them to support the back.

How long do spinal fusions last?

Any time you have surgery, you should allow time for your body to heal. The same is true of a spinal fusion. The primary goal of your recovery is to get your vertebrae to fuse correctly, which can take three to six months to complete.

How long does the pain last after spinal fusion surgery?

The worst pain is generally over by 4 weeks after surgery. Pain is likely to continue to decrease gradually, but some patients continue to have pain 3 to 6 months after surgery.

Will I need a walker after spinal fusion?

Walking and Moving After Spinal Fusion Surgery Even getting out of bed requires a special technique—known as log-rolling—to avoid twisting the spine. In some cases, the physical therapist may advise the patient to use a walker for stability.

Is Spinal fusion major surgery?

What is Spinal Fusion Surgery? Spinal fusion is a major surgery and medical procedure used to treat back injuries. The surgery includes using rods and screws, and bone grafts to stabilize the spine. This surgery is usually a last resort after other treatments have been tried and failed.

What is the success rate of spinal fusion surgery?

Depending on the condition the surgery is treating, spinal fusion has a 70 to 90% success rate.