Cervical discectomy and fusion, lumbar discectomy, lumbar fusion, laminectomy, and kyphoplasty – are all examples of the most commonly performed spine surgeries to fix herniated discs, spinal stenosis, sciatica, pinched nerves, vertebral compression, and even scoliosis. All of these are major surgeries, therefore, there is a period of rehabilitation that patients need to undergo before making a complete recovery.
While every patient recovers differently, there are some things you can expect while in recovery.
One of the biggest benefits of spine surgery is pain relief. Depending on the type of procedure performed, many patients report a significant reduction in their back pain or neck pain shortly after their operation. While this relief isn’t immediate for everyone, most patients will start feeling better within a few days or weeks post-surgery.
Your doctor will prescribe pain medication for relief from symptoms associated with the procedure itself. If you are experiencing residual discomfort even after successful treatment, this should improve over time with physical therapy and rehabilitation.
Depending on the type of surgery performed and its complexity, you may experience mobility restrictions for a period of time (approximately 6 weeks) following your operation. There should be no twisting or bending of the body. Avoid strenuous activities like running or lifting heavy objects until you are given clearance from your doctor. The last thing you want is to push yourself too much and get injured.
Follow-Up Appointments and Tests
Do not miss any of your follow-up appointments with your doctor during the first few months after spine surgery. These are critical to ensuring your progress is being monitored and to assess how well you are responding to your post-surgical treatment plan, while also checking for any signs of complications.
Your treatment plan may include exercises designed to reduce pain and inflammation, strengthen the muscles that support your back, as well as minimize muscle spasms. Over time, your physical therapy exercises will include flexibility and range-of-motion exercises to restore normal movement patterns throughout the body. You may also be taught how to use assistive devices such as walkers or crutches, if needed, for additional support during activities like walking or standing up from a seated position.
Spine surgeries often require lifestyle changes, including diet modifications along with activity level adjustments. Protein is necessary for healing, so add lean meats, poultry, fish, and eggs to your diet. Avoid inflammation-causing foods such as fried food, junk food, and baked goods. You also need vitamin D and calcium for healing, which means taking time each day out in the sunlight and having low-fat dairy products.
Board-Certified Spine Surgeon in Westlake & Avon, OH
At Orthopaedic Associates, we have one of the most highly skilled spine surgeons in Northeast Ohio, Dr. Jeffrey Roberts. Dr. Roberts combines his skill and compassion to provide superior spine care to patients with all types of painful spine conditions.
If you are feeling anxious about the thought of undergoing spine surgery, allow Dr. Roberts and our caring team to address your concerns. Dr. Roberts takes his time to listen to his patients. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Roberts, call our office today at (440) 892-1440. We look forward to your call!