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One week post op L4-L5 Fusion

Jan 21, 2017 4:25 PM

Hi everyone, just joined the group. Looking to discuss with others about any related issues.

Jan 21, 2017 6:04 PM

Hi and welcome to the family. Hope your fusion fixes the problem for you. I have all of my thoracic spine fused. Scoliosis repair. I have more metal in me than some cars, lol. Surf around some of the threads we have a great supportive group here.

Jan 21, 2017 6:38 PM

Hi! I'm fairly new to group also. I had L5/S1 lumbar fusion January 2013. The recovery was long and painful and never completely fixed the pain. I had C4-C6 anterior fusion (neck) in February 2013. That went really well and I recovered quickly. It actually cut migraines & headaches down tremendously. In November 2016 I had another lumbar fusion - to fix the 1st "failed" fusion, plus discs that went bad after the 1st fusion (common after a 1 level fusion). This time it was NOT the less invasive surgery (required 17 staples) and fused L2-S5 with new hardware (rods, screws, & plate). The recovery was much easier! Maybe because I knew what to expect this time - or maybe because it actually fixed the source of pain (hopefully). I'm still recovering & plan to return to my desk job this Monday after being on medical leave since the surgery. I'm still wearing a back brace & having to wear a bone growth stimulator 2 hours a day. It takes up to a year to *fully* recover, but I can already tell a difference in the pain. How are you doing 1 week post-op? Any questions I may can help with? I know I had a lot of questions & concerns during my first lumbar fusion & didn't have a forum like this to help!

Jan 21, 2017 7:49 PM

I have had laminectomies on T9 and T10 due to falling down the stairs and not being able to walk. I'm a lucky lady to be walking. I have L5 slipping backwards pinching the horse tail of nerves affecting my legs. They want to fuse L4, L5, & S1 with rods. They need to go through my stomach and back. I'm scared to death. I'm overweight and have a very weak core muscles and legs from the last 5 1/2 years since the fall down the stairs. Should I wait untill I lose weight and strengthen my legs and core muscles?

Jan 21, 2017 7:50 PM

I forgot to ask how long should the recovery be?

Jan 21, 2017 9:22 PM

Geeze! I'm very excited to find you all in this post. I have so many questions. You're a week out of surgery? How do you feel? Have you been able to shower on your own yet? Do you need help with your meals? I live alone and I have no idea how long I will need help from family.
Thanks! Suzy ☺

Jan 21, 2017 9:38 PM

I had laminoplasties done on C2 thru C6. But I also have a sharp scoliosis curve @ T1 - T4 that affects the extreme weakness in my arms and coordination of my hands. Would it be worth fusing the top 2 or 3 vertabrae Thoracic spine. My hands tingle holding my phone and sitting Indian style. The only problem I've had in my back before the fall down the stairs 5 years ago. The trouble I've had with pain in my upper back since I was 23. I fell down on my rear end in a broken elevator that freefell a couple floors. My upper back and my arms and shoulders greatly affected. My coordination is getting worse too. I just started therapy in a warm pool about 3 times a week for the past 3 weeks. So I don't know if I should consider surgery at all? Any thoughts?

Jan 21, 2017 9:49 PM

Thanks all for the posts that make me smile to hear some related comments. I have been so blessed. I got a hospital bed and have been sleeping downstairs, which means no shower but I did think...my clubhouse has the shower head that releases. So my Husband brought my portable potty and I sat on that and showered. It was heavenly. After the nurse not showing up that was supposed to give the sponge bath and no shower before going home. I took things in my own hands. I do have a nurse once a day only permitted to change the dressing.
I am stuck right now with not knowing how much to walk with the walker, sit with the brace on. I have my post op apt next Monday. I struggle with having people do things for me is probably my worst set back. I have my Mother here during the day while my Husband works. I also have a 6 year old son who is a great help. I feel so bad just sitting in bed and not helping but when I feel the painful consequence I soon realize to just chill.

Jan 24, 2017 10:34 AM

SuzyQQs - the longer you wait, the less likely the nerves will heal after surgery. The nerves can get permanent damage from being pinched long term. Have the fusion, you won't regret it. You will get immediate relief on the pain in your legs. The first couple of weeks post op is mainly recovering at the incision site. You'll be unable to bend, twist, lift for a few months & will prob get a bone growth stimulator to wear a couple hours a day because of multiple levels, but it helps. Don't let rods scare you. You don't feel them.

Jan 24, 2017 12:02 PM

I'm following. I currently have 3 mild to moderate herniated discs and one severely extruded disc. Injections helped for awhile but have recently worn off. Currently I am dealing with severe tail bone pain. My initial MRI didn't capture that part of the spine so unsure what is going on and I am soon to have an MRI of that region. My doctor has been opposed to fusion bc it would put more stress on my other vulnerable narrowing disc and cause them to herniate faster. Might have to consider having my extruded disc shaved. Anyone have that done?

Jan 24, 2017 3:05 PM

JB8, I have spinal issues from neck to tailbone, from DDD, OA, facet stenosis, bulges, etc. I had surgery on my neck discs twice in the 90's, and my third fusion surgery last August. I'm still recuperating as the bone fusion hasn't completely healed. Once it heals the are two more areas in the neck to deal with, before we address my thoracic or lumbar areas. Each surgery & recuperation time has been different. It was a full 4 -5 weeks before I could bathe and dress without assistance this last time. I've been careful to follow discharge instructions about lifting and such. This last surgery has reduced my headaches, both migraines and cervicogenic. I wish you a complete and full recovery! Hugs love and prayers! 🙂💕🙏🌸

Jan 24, 2017 4:08 PM

I have another question if you can help with any suggestions, my AID is coming to help with cleaning myself. My situation is I am unable to climb stairs. I am in a hospital bed downstairs and we only have a half bath. How do we make this work? I already have used the dry shampoo. Product suggestions, anythingbqould help bunches. Thanks 🛁🚿

Jan 25, 2017 4:10 PM

Baby wipes, using a large wash tub with soap & water with a wash cloth. It's tough getting through the first 2 weeks or so. When and if you think you can tolerate it, go have your hair washed and dried at a salon. I think getting around after cervical surgery is much easier than lumbar surgery.

Jan 26, 2017 4:25 PM

Today I had a wheelchair lent to me so I could go to my event at my school. And the pain I feel has all come back. I have been in tears twice today. Way too much too soon. I'm feeling stabbing and aching pains that are bring back flashbacks from the hospital. Prayers please, I feel like I never want to go out of my bed again. 😩

Jan 26, 2017 4:26 PM

*at my Sons school

Jan 26, 2017 4:29 PM

Oh no! Hugs love & prayers definitely! 🙂💕🙏🌸

Jan 27, 2017 9:52 AM

JB8, I am so sorry your pain has returned with a vengeance. Sending positive thoughts and healing {{{Hugs}}} your way. 🤗💕

Jan 29, 2017 8:36 AM

JB8, try ice on your pain for 20 mins on/off. You can also take Tylenol in between percocet doses & lidocaine rub or patches.

Jan 29, 2017 9:50 PM

Going for my follow up with my surgeon tomorrow, I am making a list of anything that I feel needs to discussed. Staying positive and optimistic and pushing on through anything and everything that comes my way. Including all these people than land in my path to keep me in check. I feel so blessed. 🙏

Jan 30, 2017 1:38 AM

Hello JB8 Im in the process of injections rather than the fusion. How do you feel after? Welcome to the group. Xxx

Jan 31, 2017 10:53 AM

Hello JB8...along with other issues i have permenant damage at L5-S1 because i put off surgery to long. Now it'd takes all i have just to do the simplest things because the pain is so exchrutiating. I wish i had answers for u on how to help but just know im here if you ever need to talk.

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