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lynnsyllynnsy Posts: 197
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Today is my one year anniversary from my 3 level fusion. One year ago I was in surgery for 5 hours, in the hospital for 5 days, then in a rehab center for 7 days, learning how to walk and climb stairs.

OMG, it's been a rough painful road. I've said it a hundred times, "I'd rather have given birth to 10 children NATURALLY, than the pain endured from my fusion".

Well, now that it is one year, I can honestly say, I am better. It's been a hard long rough road, and I know I've still got a ways to go. I still go to PT, I still take about 3 percocets, sometimes 4 per day, depending on the weather. I am still numb on the inside of my left knee, up my thigh, I am still numb over on my right hip-buttocks, tender to touch, (all came from my surgery), BUT I've learned to live with it. I refuse to get more surgery!

I've learned to accept that life is different. Sad as it may be, it's different. There are so many things I cannot do, and will never be able to do. My life has changed forever. But I don't let that stop me in enjoying my "new" life. I can ride my ATV, slowly, not "hot-doggin" like I use to, I still go camping, can't dance like I use to, (I really miss that, I love to dance) can't bend over to pick up anything with weight over 20lbs, still can't run yet, or jump. Went to Cozumel Mexico for Christmas, got to snorkel and swim in the Caribbean... I refuse to stop living.

The only time I really hurt is when there's a change in the barometer, or if I over do it with driving, cleaning my home, or standing cooking for too long, sometimes when I roll over to my right in bed, when I sit in the bathtub and shave my legs, (puts me on the couch for a day).

But other than that, I'd say I'm doing pretty darn good. My original excrutiating sciatica pain is gone. Am I glad I had it done, yes. I just really didn't realize how long it takes to heal. I'm still healing.

But just to give people hope, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Just realize that your life as you knew it will never be the same again. I was a very strong, outgoing, could do anything kind of woman, not any more, I'm always conscience of my titanium rods and screws, and do everything in my power to protect it.


  • Thank you for such a wonderfull encouraging post! I am almost at the 6 month point and cant for the life of me figure out why I did this to myself,lol. It can only get better, thank you for reminding me that.
  • Excellent news, Lynnsy! Yes, it sure takes longer than most of us ever imagined, but we do get there - there is light at the end of the tunnel!
    Keep positive!


    ...an old timer here and ex-moderator

  • I'm with you on rough road of recovery. I had my 1 yr anniv. on 2/5. I'm a pretty macho type guy but that did knock me down hard. I couldn't even walk out of the house until my third week. I never been thru anything like that before and don't want to repeat it again. I can say that I am 100% better now and would do it all over again if I hurt like I did for so long. I did get my life back which I'm very thankful for. This forum was a savior for me before and after surgery because there is always someone to talk to anytime of the day or night.

    Good Luck

  • Sounds like you're doing pretty darn good Keith. Did you have a three level fusion? I'm still not to the point of my "normal" life. Don't know if I'll ever be. But then again, I've been told that my 3 level fusion may take up to 2 years to heal all together. So I'll be focusing on this new year, and cross my fingers, pray and work hard to be able to say, "I'd do it all over again". The changes in the barometer really get me down. I suppose that will be forever.

    If you had a three level fusion, how old are you? I am 53 and a woman. I use to be a very outgoing woman. I'm a complete outdoors woman. We live in the mountains of Colorado, I'm an avid Elk hunter, I'm the kind of woman that use to get out there and help in chain sawing down trees to gather winter firewood, I plow our driveway with my ATV. In fact how I hurt my back in the first place was not only working it too hard all my life, but I lifted a trashcan that weighed around 125-lbs! There was no task I couldn't complete. But so much for those days.

    I will never be able to do the things I use to do, life is just different. It gets me depressed sometimes, but I'm learning to accept it.

    I also look at it now as, "well, I am getting older, I guess I shouldn't be doing those things anyway anymore". It's a bi*** getting older.
  • Every day I asked myself why I did this to myself..You're not the only one. I am glad to hear there is some light at the end of the tunnel.
  • Wonderful! Glad to hear you are doing so well - it is very encouraging!
    I am about 6.5 months post-fusion surgery. Am certainly progressing - but it is SLOW! Still have a bit of pain in left hip, butt, pelvis but I think it is getting better. This surgery certainly is hard on the total body! (I am 58 though some days my body feels about 80!)
    Thanks for posting your excellent progress!
  • I had a 2 level TLIF L4-S1. I'm now 46 and I understand about things being different. I love to hunt myself and I'm still doing that as much as I can. I have been remodeling the house lately and pulling up some old vinyl and that has caused some pains but I'm dealing with it. Progress is very slow but everyday is a little better as long as you do what your Dr. asks. Once he releases you then you can start testing the back. Laying on ice 4-5 times a day seemed to help me alot. Hope things are going well.

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