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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

Greetings from the Heartland,
SHG, Your operation date is coming up soon, First I wish you the best of luck. I agree with Haley from the UK, I am recovering from 360 degree fusion for the second time in 1 year. I would recommend not using BMP to fuse, mine failed and thier is a about 25% failure rate. The second time around I used my own bone from my pelvic. I use to be active also, you will need to take it slow, if you try to do to much to soon you will risk fracture of the fusion, it is almost impossible to re-fuse a fracture and you could end up in a bad way. Be very careful. I had a pump installed in the operating room, so I punch the morphine as soon as I could get my hand working. My hospital had me up and walking a few steps the day after surgery. My doctor belief is get moving as soon as possible and you will heal faster. I was in a lot of pain for a while but finally after several days of trying made it about 75 feet. The pain sometimes I think from them removing some of my own pelvic bone was bad for about 3 weeks. Get your home prepared, have meals pre-cooked or have the take out menus handy. remove any loose rugs or carpets, I slipped once that was enough for me. I moved my bed from the upstairs to the first floor of my home so I would not have to do stairs for the first weeks. I did do a big no no I drove DO NOT DO THIS steering is not the problem it is braking. The pain from simple putting on the brakes in the first few weeks is enough to pray for a hammer in the head. You do not want to risk your life or the life of others around you. I live in the country so I was risking the lives of cows. The 3 week time period though I thought the same is not something you should do. Getting in and out of a car, walking a long distance, sitting for longer than 30min at a time is going to cause pain. My doctor always said 4-6 weeks to be able to see a movie. 15-18 weeks before thinking about returning to work. I work as a mechanic, and I have a farm so hard work and long hours are nothing new I never thought I could stay in my home for so many hours, If you want to heal you will need to. I am now 11 weeks out from my second operation, I can walk without a cane, I can do chores in the house, but outside work is not a option for me at this time but will be someday. You will find warm pools are your friend. If you really want to get back fast, after your stiches heal find a 85-95degree pool and walk back and forth in it for about 1 hour , practice squats . It is still summer so forget about socks, use slip on shoes or slippers. Good Luck

Hey Brooke,
had my second last exam today and i think i stuffed it up a beauty :( it was my favourite subject too. not much i can do now. The one they cancelled is on wednesday, few more days to prepare i suppose. and then thats it!
Im pressuming new years eve i wont be feeling much at all due to the alcohol i will be consuming, but i will pay for it afterwards. the way i see it is, its my last 14 nights of fun and drinking cos as you know i wont be drinking till im fully fused. i figure i may aswell go all out and then when i come home ill have no regrets! i usually dont dance much when im out, unless im absolutly blind! cos its not worth the pain im in for the next week. my mates are pretty good bout it by reminding me that it may not hurt now but it will later!!
the worst is when we go to pubs and stuff and everyones sitting, cos after my 10.5 hour shift on saturdays running around at work, my back is not really happy if i sit! so i just stand, can be embarrassing sometimes when everyone else is sitting.
so hows your pain levels going? are u still feeling improvement every day?
whats your daily schedule like these days? how long till your allowed to get into a car? and be driven somewhere?

i too have told my parents bout this great guy on the net who is sooo positive and went back to work rather quickly. and they think its fantastic that ive found people like you to talk to in order to keep my spirits up.
honestly, you will never, ever fully understand how your words and inspiration have changed my attitude heading into a life changing operation. i just wish i could see you face to face so you could see how sincere i am! i mite have to tag along with brooke when she goes to N.Y!!!

anyways the sun is shining and the weather is sweet, makes me wanna move my dancing feet!

speak soon guys love Tiah
[QUOTE=camelia]Hi David - I had to go back & check that you had fusion surgery - & you did!! even had bone taken from your iliac crest!! You just sound so well already & seem very relaxed about everything - good for you! 3 flights of stairs too - I'm concerned about the 1 flight we have in our loft
Where did you have the fusion & why didnt they use BMP?
Did you have an Interbody fusion or a posterolateral fusion?
How long was the actual surgery & did you give blood prior to the op?
Hope you have a chance to read & answer my questions
best wishes for your continuing good recovery
Hi Camelia
Don't worry about the stairs at your loft. They had me do plenty of practice before they let me loose and there was little pain even at that point in time.

I assume that I had a 'Posterior lumbar interbody fusion' by the sounds of it. The 'official' explanation on a letter that I have from the Health Region states that I had quote "L5-S1 spinal decompression and fusion with instrumentation with left iliac crest bone graft" unquote. My doctor simply told me that he went in through my back from an older surgery site and inserted two titanium rods with 8 screws and the bone from my hip. One of the nurses was surprised that I didn't have two surgery sites as she said a lot of doctors have a separate incision for the bone graft versus the fusion. However, my surgeon apparently prefers to use one long (8" I am told" incision and do everything from the one site.

As long as the actual length of surgery, I was wheeled in at 7:45 and wheeled out at 11:15. So I assume it was around 3 hours roughly.

I went in for pre-op a week before surgery but they did not take any blood ahead of time. Apparently, I did lose a lot of blood during surgery. The day after surgery, Thursday, they had me stand at the side of the bed for about 10 minutes without doing any walking, while they changed my sheets. The next day, Friday, the PT had me use a walker to get to the end of the wing. Then she got called away and she told me to go ahead and make it back on my own and that I shouldn't have any problems. WRONG! I got all the way back to the door of my room when the room started spinning and I could feel myself starting to collapse. My bed was about 8 feet away and I basically tossed the walker and made a last ditch effort to get to my bed, where I collapsed. A nurse saw me and yelled for help and they got me settled back in and then told me it was probably because of the large amount of blood that I had lost and my body was still weak. It could have been a lot worse if I had fallen on the floor, but I didn't. I assume the PT got a tongue lashing.

As far as the bone graft goes, everybody told me that it would be much more painful than the fusion site. However, I have not found that at all. I don't feel any pain whatsoever from the site where they took the bone graft.

I am doing so much better again today than I was yesterday. I am starting to feel it in my lower back from sitting here and so will have to close this soon, but I am recovering at a much much higher rate than I had anticipated. I am not trying to push it though and am just taking it slow and easy.

If you want answers to any other questions, shoot away.


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