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Spinal Cord Disorders Message Board


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Dear all - just wondering:
When did you go back to work / regular exercise?
What happens if you over-do it?
When does the pins and needles go?
Also has anyone had any bad complications?
I am 4 weeks post-op ACDF 3/4, 4/5, 5/6 - also my scar is very protruded but not infected - any tips on flattening? - hope you are all well out there and god speed :)
[QUOTE=sonus;4787565]Dear all - just wondering:
When did you go back to work / regular exercise?
What happens if you over-do it?
When does the pins and needles go?
Also has anyone had any bad complications?
I am 4 weeks post-op ACDF 3/4, 4/5, 5/6 - also my scar is very protruded but not infected - any tips on flattening? - hope you are all well out there and god speed :)[/QUOTE]

I had ACDF surgery March 16th. I just returned to work 1/2 days and I'm feeling pretty good! My Neurosurgeon explained to me that complete recovery can take 6 - 12 months. I must say that the last 2 weeks has been really good! I've been rubbing Bio-oil on my neck 2x a day and it seems to reduce scaring. I wore an Aspen collar for the 3 months. Physio therapy has just started 2x a week.

Good luck on your recovery. Be patent! It was like someone turning a switch on me after 8 weeks! This really seemed to be a turning point for me.

Dave
I am unsure what happened to my last post. I put some time into it. It was my first after joining so maybe it will appear.


So why the eight weeks? At two weeks I was back working from home. I am an IT professional so I only sit at a desk. The first week was a three day week and it was not so comfortable. I would sit up for an hour, lay down and ice for an hour, rinse wash, repeat. The third week was a full work from home week. I only stopped once every 3 or so hours to sit down and ice. I am still tired, but really no discomfort other than stiffness.

At 4 weeks I started PT. The key here is the more you move, the better you will feel. If you don't move, you can form scar tissue and cause more issues than getting up and moving.

Within 3 days i was walking outside in a neck brace. At about 10 days post op i was out walking w/o the neck brace twice a day 1 mile each time. I upped it to 3 times 1 mile at a time. Each day I felt a bit better mentally and physically.

STRETCH! Get yourself a vibrating message and massage your upper back. Alternate ice and heat. I find heat at night before i go to sleep is the best. most importantly...... STRETCH. move your arms. do fist pumps. arm raises. look left, look right, look up, look down. you have to keep moving.

Also, I have the cervical stim from orthofix and let me tell ya, that think is pretty amazing. four weeks out and the xray already shows bone growth. plus, the stim makes me feel really good. the doctor says b/c the blood flow is increased to the area.

so just my two cents. they tell me at 3 months (12 weeks) i will be back riding my motorcycle. I am age 29 btw. two level fusion. c4-c6.
[QUOTE=kelownabc;4788768]Everyone heals at different rates, however I would be very cautious about returning to work so quickly. My NS reinforced the importance of not removing my collar for 3 months to ensure neck movement was minimized. Also driving puts you at significant risk for liability if your in an accident and more importantly the damage you could do to your neck if rear ended!! I also spend my days in front of a pc or on conference calls and my NS provided me the same response,"stay off work for three months if you can afford it. You don't want this surgery a second time!"

I'm happy I followed his directions as I'm feeling 90% recovered and moving towards 100 very quickly![/QUOTE]

I guess everyone is different. Like I said I had 7 opinions and every one was different as far as recovery. The NS I went w/ has done over 9000 procedures since 1982 and has had a 99% success rate. He tracks his patients yearly as well.

The people who screwed up his success rate were a plumber who went back to work 5 days after surgery and popped blood vessels and a biker who went back to cycling 5 days post op and again blew a blood vessel both resulting in a hematoma into the spinal column and temporary paralysis.

Also, I don't have bone grafts. I think that old school way of doing the surgery makes NS more cautious b/c those things can break. I got polypropylene cages filled w/ a mix of my own bone marrow and stem cells from a cadaver. Healing time is quicker and the polypropylene cages don't break. The real risk w/ them is being hit from behind and having the vertibra separate enough to cause the cages to go into my spinal cord. I also do not have rigid plates but rather movable. Puts less stress on the screws.
Wow thank you so much you were an inspiration to me! I am scheduled for ACDF 2 level c5-6 6-7 on August 9th I am older than you but also am in good health. My Main concern is the recovery time...I work at brokerage firm and am 1 of 2 employees! I sit at desk and do a lot of typing and answering of phones and am Really hoping to go back to work 2 weeks post-op. I have a driver so I am covered there. Buying and selling stocks while on Percocets, not so sure! I am also glad to here you were out walking...I agree that moving about is better for all healing. I have been reading these blogs for days and several people have said they went back sooner rather than later and did fine WHEW!!!!!!! In this economy I don't want to risk losing my job over this! NS says HAS to be done or may wake up sooner rather than later with paralysis in hands. wih Me luck!





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