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travel after spine fusion

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Lower Back Pain
I have had L4-L5 back complaint for 12 years but may be considering surgery. I would like any infomation on when I may be able to travel long distances after spinal fusion surgery. Come to think of it any info on spinal fusion surgery recovery AT ALL would be good. Hope to hear from lots of you soon.


  • and my NS said no driving until 2 weeks out...any travel as a passenger would require frequent breaks. I know that about 15 minutes wears me out now, though. I did not discuss flying as I knew that was irrelevant for me for now, but I do believe there's a minimum time period before being able to (I think). I dealt with problems for 9 years before having fusion done.

    my first post-op visit with him is 3 weeks out from original surgery date then PT starting at 6 weeks barring any unforseen problems. I imagine different doctors view recovery nuances differently as some don't even require a brace afterwards...mine require constant wearing unless lying in bed or showering...not wearing a brace afterwards, to me, is nuts
  • Because you really can't do a lot other than read, watch tv or talk on the phone.

    Like Scinmyheart, I was allowed to drive after two weeks which really amazed me because I could still hardly move yet. So I didn't drive until about a month. By then I felt more comfortable.

    No twisting (your hips and your shoulders should always be facing the same direction). You have to roll like a log to get in and out of bed.

    You can go up and down stairs after a couple days but only one step at a time, so don't get caught in a fire drill!

    Can't lift more than 10 pounds, like my cats. This is very hard to stick to if you're an independent person.

    No vacuuming. Yeah!!!!!

    No bending at your waist. This is also a hard one to stick to. You'll have to get a grabber, or two because whenever you need it, it will be in the other room. I keep one in the kitchen and one in the living room. I've also learned how to pick lite things up with my feet! Brushing your teeth means you spit into something and then dump that into the sink.

    Some people have a hard time putting on their socks and shoes because you have to use some tool thing. I'm very flexible, so I was able to sit and cross my one leg over the other (like sitting Indian style) to put my socks on.

    Shaving my legs is still a challenge. I'm still using a shower stool, so I cross the one leg over the other and I can shave the inside, front and back of the bottom half of my leg but the outside is still hard to shave. Same drill for putting moisturizer on my legs. I'm so exhausted by the time I'm done taking a shower that I still need to rest for 10 minutes before I blow dry my hair.

    It's much more time consuming for women than man. I try and schedule any appointments in the afternoon just because it takes forever to get ready and I just don't move well in the morning. I honestly don't know what I would do if I had to go to work because I just would not be able to do that. It's been 2 months since my L3-L4 fusion.

    Someone put together a list of all the things you will need to buy or have in place ready before you have your surgery. I forget right now where it is, but I'll find it and post that here for you.

    Do you live with someone? If so it will be much easier for you. (Very time consuming for your spouse/partner.) My hubby has been great about all of this. Matter of fact, I'm having to fight with him to let me to start doing things now.

    Prepare for your surgery by thinking through your routines. Make a plan for how you'll accomplish what you need to do.

    Best wishes,

  • I don't know how to post the direct link but if you look under the Forum FAQ in the Forum Navigation box on the left you'll see General Information list. Within that, there is a link "Pre and Post Surgical Must Haves.

  • Thank you for the great tips and info on how to move and do things after surgery.
    I am going to keep this for future reference, so many things to remember.
    Nana Shan
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