Go Back   NeuroTalk Support Groups > Health Conditions M - Z > Spinal Disorders & Back Pain

Spinal Disorders & Back Pain For discussion of all spinal cord injuries, spinal issues, back-related pain or problems.

Any Useful Tips

Reply
Thread Tools Display Modes
Unread 12-03-2012, 11:37 PM   #1
bmatz25
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Michigan
Posts: 22
My Mood:
Default Any Useful Tips

Hello all. Looking for any advice from anyone that has gone through what Im preparring to under go on Jan 11th, 2013. I will be getting a decompression lumbar laminectomy with Spinal Fusion L4-Sacrum. Will be having the screws put in with a rod . Is there any advice that will allow this procedure to go easier or be less painful? The doc is planning on using bone harvested from a bone bank so I wont have to under go that pain. Any ideas on speeding up recovery time. I have a 10 month old daughter and her bithday is roughly 3 weeks after the procedure. Im only 33 years old and normally recover well. What kind of shape can I hope to be in 3 weeks post op? Just looking for info. Any is helpful. Thanks.
bmatz25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-04-2012, 08:42 AM   #2
Spiney95
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 598
My Mood:
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmatz25 View Post
Hello all. Looking for any advice from anyone that has gone through what Im preparring to under go on Jan 11th, 2013. I will be getting a decompression lumbar laminectomy with Spinal Fusion L4-Sacrum. Will be having the screws put in with a rod . Is there any advice that will allow this procedure to go easier or be less painful? The doc is planning on using bone harvested from a bone bank so I wont have to under go that pain. Any ideas on speeding up recovery time. I have a 10 month old daughter and her bithday is roughly 3 weeks after the procedure. Im only 33 years old and normally recover well. What kind of shape can I hope to be in 3 weeks post op? Just looking for info. Any is helpful. Thanks.
Google spinal surgery post op instructions. Your surgeon will also give you instructions. You will be uncomfortable for quite a while as a laminectomy is pretty rugged. Glad to hear you are using donor bone. I am guessing you are concerned about your daughter's first birthday party. Plan it out in advance, before the surgery and designate the work. You won't be in any shape to throw this special party. Make the plans in advance, get commitments from others to perform various functions and then attend the party like a guest. You will still be dealing with pain and feel generally "wiped out" at three weeks post op.

In general, cook and freeze in advance. Hopefully some friends and neighbors will bring in food. Somebody elses's cooking will taste great. Line up help with housework. Don't go stripping and changing beds for heaven's sake. No mopping or vacuuming. No bending and lifting for quite a while so put and keep needed kitchen items on the counter so you don't bend. No bending and using a dishwasher. You will need help with showering initially. I always put a folding table next to my bed and kept baskets on it for meds, reading materials, hygiene materials and lotions. fresh sleepware, snacks etc. I alway tied my remotes and cell phone to the bedpost. They have a way of falling. When this happens, you just pull them up by the string rather than using a grabber. Get you hair cut and do any needed color just before the surgery. Best wishes.
Spiney95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-04-2012, 10:16 AM   #3
Leesa
Senior Member
 
Leesa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 1,424
My Mood:
Default

Spiney is right. I had a laminectomy/diskectomy without fusion, and I couldn't go back to work even PART TIME for 4 months, and it was 6 months before I could go back full time!!! I was an optician and on my feet all day.

Be sure you talk to your doctor about POST-OP MEDICATION because you're going to need it. I was in loads of pain afterwards. And it didn't last just a day or two, like the doctor said. It lasted weeks! But of course my surgery was a failure, so I shouldn't even mention it. LOL But you WILL need medication post-op. So ask your doc about it.

And Spiney IS right about the fact that you're going to have to be a "guest" at the birthday party. There isn't much you're going to be able to do at the party. You're just not going to be up to it. Your surgery is a nasty one, and it will wipe you out for quite awhile. Make SURE when you sleep, that you sleep with pillows under your knees. You probably already do, but make sure you do it after surgery. There are "wedges" you can buy for this purpose too. Spiney mentioned vacuuming & mopping -- my doc told me I was never to do that again -- ever!! He said that spinal patients should never do these chores as the back & forth motion is terrible for spinal patients! Also make sure you don't do any twisting.

I think Spiney covered just about everything. if you're in doubt if you're supposed to do something, DON'T DO IT. You don't want to jeopardize your fusion. Just be very careful, don't do things that could make you fall, and take good care of yourself -- and get proper rest! God bless & let us know how the surgery went, will you please? We'd like to know. Hugs, Lee
__________________
recovering alcoholic, sober since 7-29-93;severe depression; 2 open spinal surgeries; severe sciatica since 1986; epidurals; trigger points; myelograms; Rhizotomy; Racz procedure; spinal cord stimulator implant (and later removal); morphine pump trial (didn't work);now inoperable; lumpectomy; radiation; breast cancer survivor; heart attack; fibromyalgia; on disability.



Often the test of courage is not to die, but to live..
.................................................. ...............Orestes
Leesa is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-04-2012, 11:13 AM   #4
Spiney95
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 598
My Mood:
Default Another thougouht

Don't assume that because you are a young spiney that the rules don't apply to you. I don't mean to sound harsh but like Lee, I have been at this for decades and have had numerous open, invassive surgeries under my belt. I have made all of the mistakes when I was younger and found out that the rules DO apply to the young as well as the older.

Lee is correct about the post op meds. Surgeons are notorious about undermedicating the patients post op. I was your age when I had my first spinal surgery.............bi-level disc/lam in the cervical region. I was discharged with minimal meds for one week......to take care of me until I saw the surgeon for my first check up. When I told him I was experiencing considerable pain, he looked at me aghast and said, "what's wrong with you? I fixed you." Such stupidity and arrogance. This was back before the internet and good peer support and info. I cowered and accepted his decision that all I needed was a muscle relaxer and tylenol x-tra strength. It took me forever to recover as I got little rest for months due to untreated pain. If you have a pain doc, get in to see him asap after the surgery for a good check up and review of your medications. Hugz.
Spiney95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-04-2012, 11:13 AM   #5
bretd
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: muskegon, michigan
Posts: 130
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmatz25 View Post
Hello all. Looking for any advice from anyone that has gone through what Im preparring to under go on Jan 11th, 2013. I will be getting a decompression lumbar laminectomy with Spinal Fusion L4-Sacrum. Will be having the screws put in with a rod . Is there any advice that will allow this procedure to go easier ohave r be less painful? The doc is planning on using bone harvested from a bone bank so I wont have to under go that pain. Any ideas on speeding up recovery time. I have a 10 month old daughter and her bithday is roughly 3 weeks after the procedure. Im only 33 years old and normally recover well. What kind of shape can I hope to be in 3 weeks post op? Just looking for info. Any is helpful. Thanks.
Good luck with surgery, I went thru a triple spinal fusion. It maybe a very long recovery time, you are younger than I was so that may help. Stay in the hospital as long as you need to. I could have stayed one more day but I just wanted to go home, it was a bad idea. The ladys have alot of good ideas, have everything you need at your bed side, books, magizines. try and find someone who can help you out for the first week or two, make you somthing to eat, get you some water or whatever else you need. Take the pain meds just as they are perscribed, even if you think you don't need them, if you you wait to long to take them it will be to late. And call your doc asap if they don't seem to help. In the hospital they have a sheet under you to help role you over, make sure you do that in your bed so some one can role you over. I would really try to post pone the birthday party, I know its hard but I really don't think you will be ready for that. Get up and walk as much as you can or as much as the doc say's too. It will be hard and you may not want to, but it will pay off in the end. Don't rush things it takes along time to heal. I wish you only the best of luck. If you have a lap top keep us updated. Also get a laxative, trust me with all the pain meds you will need it.
bretd is offline   Reply With Quote
"Thanks for this!" says:
Spiney95 (12-04-2012)
Unread 12-04-2012, 01:38 PM   #6
Spiney95
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 598
My Mood:
Default Good Grief, Yes!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bretd View Post
Good luck with surgery, I went thru a triple spinal fusion. It maybe a very long recovery time, you are younger than I was so that may help. Stay in the hospital as long as you need to. I could have stayed one more day but I just wanted to go home, it was a bad idea. The ladys have alot of good ideas, have everything you need at your bed side, books, magizines. try and find someone who can help you out for the first week or two, make you somthing to eat, get you some water or whatever else you need. Take the pain meds just as they are perscribed, even if you think you don't need them, if you you wait to long to take them it will be to late. And call your doc asap if they don't seem to help. In the hospital they have a sheet under you to help role you over, make sure you do that in your bed so some one can role you over. I would really try to post pone the birthday party, I know its hard but I really don't think you will be ready for that. Get up and walk as much as you can or as much as the doc say's too. It will be hard and you may not want to, but it will pay off in the end. Don't rush things it takes along time to heal. I wish you only the best of luck. If you have a lap top keep us updated. Also get a laxative, trust me with all the pain meds you will need it.
Laxative and stool softner. Take a stool softner at night with a glass of hot herbal tea or water, whether you think you need it or not. You do. You must keep that stool not only moving but relatively soft so you don't strain on the pot. Straining will aggravate the back and increase the pain levels. You might be able to get by with just a stool softner but I am guessing that you will need to bump it with a laxative several time a week. That will become a lesser problem as you are able to decrease the pain meds and also do some walking. The walking helps to keep everything moving. While a high natural fiber diet is great, make certain that you are chasing it with lots of water or it may set up like cement blocks. This is going to be trial and error. What one person requires may send another hobbling to the pot every hour.

Another thought here. If you have good ins. the fact that you had a lammie may qualify you for some time in a physical rehab hospital. I know you will want to get home to that baby but if you can get some in patient rehab, it will very beneficial. The physical therapy will be set up to increase your strength and safe movement. The occupational therapy will work on giving you new skills for functioning within the home setting. They will also keep you comfortable. Tell your head floor nurse that you want to speak to a patient advocate about being evaluated for in patient rehab and in home services. Chances are the surgeon will never discuss those options.............after all, he fixed you.
Spiney95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-04-2012, 10:33 PM   #7
lal209
Junior Member
 
lal209's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 23
Default Good advice!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmatz25 View Post
Hello all. Looking for any advice from anyone that has gone through what Im preparring to under go on Jan 11th, 2013. I will be getting a decompression lumbar laminectomy with Spinal Fusion L4-Sacrum. Will be having the screws put in with a rod . Is there any advice that will allow this procedure to go easier or be less painful? The doc is planning on using bone harvested from a bone bank so I wont have to under go that pain. Any ideas on speeding up recovery time. I have a 10 month old daughter and her bithday is roughly 3 weeks after the procedure. Im only 33 years old and normally recover well. What kind of shape can I hope to be in 3 weeks post op? Just looking for info. Any is helpful. Thanks.
Everyone here has provided good advice -- I ditto all of it. If you read through many of the posts on the forum, you'll learn quickly that everyone is different regarding the amount of pain and associated problems post surgery and I can say from personal experience that after three spinal surgeries in a year, my experience was different after each of them. That said, everything the others have said is worth following regardless of your personal situation.

I'm 3 weeks today post laminectomies with fusion and instrumentation at L2-S1. This following the same at the T-3/4 and T-9/10 levels in Sept and ACDF of C4-7 last Nov. The percocept and soma I'm currently on are doing a good job with managing the pain this time and I've been able to be fairly active since the surgery and esp the last week or so. The problem is, I probably feel better than I actually am since I've started developing pain in my upper thigh and hip that I didn't have before. Not sure if it's because I've been doing too much or something else, but everyone always warns about this. So the moral is, even if you feel ok, don't be tempted to do too much. Esp with a young daughter that won't understand why you can't pick her up or bend over to hug her, etc. If you do have the birthday party, do as spiney and leesa said and be a guest only. It's really hard to have to depend on others to do things for you, but prepare yourself and them for that now. I can't tell you how many times I've had to ask someone to pick up something I've dropped or needed help with getting dressed, etc.

You may want to get a shower chair, a long brush to wash with and a hand-held shower head if you don't already have them. Also think through your clothing and what's easy to put on and won't irritate the incision as it heals. You may be given a brace to wear when you are out of bed. I had to change some of what I normally wear to be comfortable with mine.

Just some thoughts to consider. Good luck with everything! Hope it all goes well!
lal209 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-05-2012, 05:14 PM   #8
Leesa
Senior Member
 
Leesa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 1,424
My Mood:
Default

The hospital gave me a "grabber-reacher" but I doubt they do that anymore due to costs. It would behoove you to pick one up because you WILL be dropping things. Pick one up at a pharmacy or health supply store. It's a long handled thingy with a claw at the bottom that allows you to pick things up at a distance. You WILL need one -- it also allows you to get things off of shelves, as I've used mine a number of times!!! I still use it because reaching hurts!

Just something else I remembered.
__________________
recovering alcoholic, sober since 7-29-93;severe depression; 2 open spinal surgeries; severe sciatica since 1986; epidurals; trigger points; myelograms; Rhizotomy; Racz procedure; spinal cord stimulator implant (and later removal); morphine pump trial (didn't work);now inoperable; lumpectomy; radiation; breast cancer survivor; heart attack; fibromyalgia; on disability.



Often the test of courage is not to die, but to live..
.................................................. ...............Orestes
Leesa is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-05-2012, 05:34 PM   #9
bretd
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: muskegon, michigan
Posts: 130
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leesa View Post
The hospital gave me a "grabber-reacher" but I doubt they do that anymore due to costs. It would behoove you to pick one up because you WILL be dropping things. Pick one up at a pharmacy or health supply store. It's a long handled thingy with a claw at the bottom that allows you to pick things up at a distance. You WILL need one -- it also allows you to get things off of shelves, as I've used mine a number of times!!! I still use it because reaching hurts!

Just something else I remembered.
I forgot about that leesa, I still use them to this day. I bet I have been thru 6 of those things since 1-26-10. Great advice........
bretd is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-14-2012, 11:04 PM   #10
bmatz25
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Michigan
Posts: 22
My Mood:
Grin Helpful ideas are appreciated.

Thanks everyone for all the tips. Obviosly Im new to this and appreciate any tips from all of you that have experienced this firsthand. Its so hard to speak to someone, even someone close, about this. They just dont have ANY IDEA, which is a good thing.
I have been seeing a great pain mgmt doc for the past 3 years and that has given me some normalcy in my life. I have good communication with this doc and she encourages me to be upfront about my pain so this should be helpful after my procedure. I will post following my operation, even though it has been pushed back slightly. Another concern I have is living in cold weather and how this will affect the pain or stiffness (live on the Coastline of Lake Michigan, the western side of Michigan).
bmatz25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Tips for a Bad Day. SpaceCadet Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Concussion Syndrome 8 02-07-2012 04:04 PM
Tips and ideas Blessings2You The Stumble Inn 7 01-17-2012 04:13 PM
Traveling tips? Donna7 Thoracic Outlet Syndrome 5 12-13-2006 12:31 PM
Sleeping Tips anyone ?? Brian Peripheral Neuropathy 23 10-30-2006 01:43 AM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:20 AM.
Brought to you by the fine folks who publish mental health and psychology information at Psych Central Mental Health Forums

The material on this site is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment
provided by a qualified health care provider. Always consult your doctor before trying anything you read here.


Powered by vBulletin • Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.


All posts copyright their original authors Community Guidelines Terms of Use Privacy Policy
NeuroTalk Archives