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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

Hello and welcome to the board ~

When you have severe stenosis, regardless of your age, you really only have two choices: live with the pain and expect that it will get no better, and likely will get worse, or jump into the pool.

It sounds like you did your homework. You state 3 doctors gave you the same diagnosis. I assume that means you have consulted with 3 different spinal specialists. It sounds like your surgeon is a fellowship-trained spinal specialist. Finding a good surgeon is one of the keys to a successful outcome.

Regarding when you can return to work, most surgeons give you an optimistic time frame. You "can" return in 3 to 4 weeks, but will it really be in your best interest to do so? You want to give yourself enough time that you aren't compromising the new corrections. And in reality, you will not be mostly healed for at least a year.

The other important thing to remember is that no back surgery is going to restore you to the way you were prior to the start of your back problems. It is done for pain relief, but surgery will not "fix the problem" and restore you to the way you were in your teens or early twenties.

Most people have successful outcomes from this surgery. Your age will work in your favor regarding healing. Just make up your mind now that you will follow your doctor's orders to the letter and that you will be working hard to heal and to rehab. And that as you age, you will always need to be mindful that you are a back patient -- you must develop good body mechanics, keep your weight normal, exercise and and do your core exercises faithfully to keep your back healthy.

When I had my fusion in Jan. I was convinced that it was going to be the worst experence of my life. I had been reading stories on the board for 3 years and I was prepared for the very worst, and I was scared to death. I postponed surgery for 3 years, hoping to avoid it. As a result, I came out surprised that it wasn't as bad as I was anticipating!! And, yes, I am very glad I had the surgery.

Good luck to you. It sounds like you are as prepared as one can be. Did you read the "sticky" near the top of the page on getting your home prepared for surgery? The best advice I got was the tip on buying satin sheets for the bed you will be recovering in. Turning over is so difficult at the beginning and the satin sheets really help in this regard. The other really useful item is a raised toilet seat, and of course, the "grabber." No one can live without that unless you have full-time servants!!:rolleyes: You won't believe how many things you drop until you're not allowed to bend over.

Feel free to post with all your questions and concerns. There are tons of people on the board who have had a similar surgery and will be able to share their experiences.

xx M:wave:M

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