If you are scheduled to have back surgery or you are considering having it, you may be wondering what the recovery period is like after the operation. Your surgeon will provide you with detailed instructions tailored to your condition to help in your rehabilitation, but there are a few key factors involved.
Let’s talk about what you can expect to experience after having spine surgery, and where you can go if you would like a solution for your back pain.
Take Your Prescription Medication
Your surgeon will prescribe medication to help relieve post-op issues after your spine surgery. It is necessary to follow the doctor’s instructions in taking your medicines in order to achieve their maximum efficacy and to help make your recovery as painless and smooth as possible.
Your spine surgeon may prescribe one or more of the following types of medicine:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) – help reduce pain and inflammation, and aid in improving mobility
- Paracetamol – used for pain relief, especially for patients who cannot take NSAIDs due to bleeding risks or asthma
- Corticosteroids – effective in reducing pain and scarring
- Laxatives – aid in bowel movement and help prevent constipation
To avoid contraindications or adverse reactions, it’s vital to discuss your current medications and any allergies you have to certain drugs with your surgeon before the procedure.
Ambulation and Physical Therapy After Surgery
It is vitally important to start moving around after having back surgery. Studies show that patients who get up and move soon after a spine operation experience fewer complications and shorter hospital stays. The previous practice of lots of bed rest after a surgical procedure has unwanted effects, such as physical deconditioning and obstructed circulation.
You will most likely be recommended to have physical therapy during your rehabilitation program. Your surgeon can answer any questions you have about what to expect during rehab and post-op therapy.
Incision Site Care
Your post-op medical team will explain precisely how to clean your wound and how to change the bandages – or how often to come in for a professional change of your dressing. This will help to prevent infection and speed up healing.
Consult your surgeon about showering, and ensure beforehand that your bathroom is safe and clean. The doctor may tell you to:
- Keep the incision area and bandages dry
- Cover the surgical area with plastic wrap as necessary
- Have an assistant who can help you during at least the first few days after the surgery
If you notice any abnormalities in your wound, such as draining fluid, swelling, warmth, redness, or reopening, contact your surgeon immediately.
Spine Care in Westlake and Avon, OH
Following your back surgeon’s post-op instructions after having spine surgery is crucial to a full and speedy recovery. Here at Orthopaedic Associates, we will be there with you and for you before, during, and after your back surgery to make sure that you get back to the life you love.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (440) 892-1440 or by filling out our appointment request form online now. We look forward to helping you stand up straight and tall once again!