It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....

Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

Welcome to the board. You probably already know what I am going to suggest...but it is worth repeating in case your surgeon or the nurse didn't tell you. The first surgeon I had told me " if it hurts, don't do it" after a fusion at L4-5. That was the extent of his instructions...and this was my first surgery of any type, ever. Of course the problem of this advice is that you don't know what you are doing is " too much" until after you have done the activity or movement.

According to my surgeon (the one after the guy mentioned above) the biggest problem he has with microdiscectomy patients is their eagerness to jump back into all the old activities that they haven't been able to do since the onset of pain or injury. Often the patient gets almost immediate relief when the tissue is moved off the nerve...and within days they are eager to act like they never had a problem or surgery.

Resist that temptation! If you can be patient and give yourself time to recover until you have really can hopefully avoid developing a chronic pain situation.

You might want to buy a "grabber." If unfamiliar, look online for an extension reacher grabber. It is an extended stick with a "clamp claw" type of thing that is used to pick up stuff you drop. Also good for grabbing laundry, things on bottom or top shelf, etc. Use it all the time. Do not think "I'll just bend over this one time."

Most important, you need to take short walks frequently. Walking is the best way to stretch out the nerves of the lumbar spine...better than any stretches which can be too much! You do this often because you want to keep scar tissue from attaching to a nerve as it forms and fills in during the first twelve weeks post surgery. Try to walk every hour or two. It doesn't need to be far...just around your house, up a hall and back, etc. If you wake up in the night to take mess or use the bathroom, walk up and down that hallway! I cannot overemphasize how important this is as scar tissue has ruined many a spine surgery.

Next: sitting. Limit sitting to 15/20 minutes at a time, for a few weeks. Then if sitting for work, get up at least every hour and walk a little bit...around your office or that hall! Sitting puts more than 30% more stress on the discs than any other position. You need to get up periodically to give the discs a break! If there is a place where you can stretch out flat on your back for a bit, that is even better.

Did you happen to see my instructions for an exercise that is a natural form of traction? I wouldn't do it yet although I doubt it would bother your surgery...maybe wait a week or so. Lie on your back on a hard surface like a carpeted floor. Be sure your body is in a straight line. Bend knees, feet flat on floor about hip's width apart. Place arms close to sides, palms facing up toward ceiling. Do a pelvic tilt or bridge to be sure pelvis is in neutral position (not tipped). Now you are in position! Relax and breathe deeply and slowly from the belly so you can see it moving up and down. Do this for about two minutes...or longer.

(I had intense sciatic pain for several years before I finally agreed to a fusion. I would do this "exercise" whenever I couldn't walk a step further...airports, dressing rooms in dept. stores., living room floors of friends and relatives, etc.! I still do it morning and night. It helps the discs to get out from the weight of gravity, helping them to unload. Also the position combined with belly breathing allows the parasympathetic nervous system to kind of "reset." One of the best things you can do for the lumbar spine! It also helps with structural alignment.)

Braces are seldom recommended by spine surgeons these days. You shouldn't need one.

Reclining is OK, in a recliner or on the bed or couch. Use lots of small pillows to support the natural curves of the spine.

One more thing regarding the disc. Many surgeons tell patients the disc will be healed in six weeks, giving the person the idea that the disc is "good as new" at that point. However, because the disc covering has no direct blood supply, healing may take three to four months to scar over. Prior to that time, the disc is more liable to reherniation.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:24 PM.

© 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!