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three month postop 2 level lumbar fusion

lizzyboollizzyboo Posts: 24
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:36 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I recently had my three month postop appt. I guess the x-rays looked good, I am still not completely fused. He indicated that it takes up to a year before that will happen. I was told to take the next month to start weaning off my brace. I have begun experiencing some numbness and tingling in my feet recently. I am still not back to work. I have a sedentary job, and am worried about not only the commute into work but also the amount of sitting that needs to be done. My boss has been very patient, but he is getting desperate for me to come back, although in the same breath he says he doesn't want me to hurry either. I told him about my feet and that this just may be something that i will just have to get used to. My leg pain is much better than before surgery, my back pain is horrendous. I am still taking norco, oxycontin, valium and baclofen. I finally weaned off the neurontin. I start therapy next week. I was just wondering how everyone was doing three months postop, and how therapy went, also as to when people went back to work. I had L3-5 fused with plates rods and screws. They used BMP. They also removed some bone spurs from L5-S1. Any information would be helpful. I guess sometimes I just feel like a big wimp, because its not like i wasn't miserable and working before surgery, but now it is just nice that i can lay down when i want to, lay back in the recliner, etc. I guess is just so wished i could find a job where i could work from home and spend more time with my 2 1/2 year old. Another question, anyone have a two level fusion and then go through a pregnancy? My husband and I would love to have another baby one of these days. I am going to be 35 in a couple of weeks so the clock is ticking.

2008 bilateral lumbar laminectomy for herniated disc at L4-5, unfortunately doctor did surgery at L3-4
October - Jan 2009 - three sets of injections
March 2009, Trial of spinal cord stimulator
April 2009 herniated L3-4 disc
MRIs, Discogram,
June 2009 two level fusion for degenerative disc disease and bulging discs, hypertrophic facet joints, etc L3-5, bone spurs removed at L5-S1
2000-2008 too many injections to count, plus therapy, tens unit, medications, etc. Still currently taking OxyContin, Norco, Valium, Baclofen and Cymbalta.


  • Hi Lizzy, it is good news that you already began fusing. At three months that is the best most of us can hope for. My three-level fusion was almost complete at five months, but the OS said that I'll continue fusing for a year.

    I am retired, so for me going back to work was not an issue, but in your case one thing that is of concern are the different medications you are still taking. I am not familiar with some of them but the oxycontin and valium not only can effect your thinking and alertness but would probably keep you from driving to work. If possible, don't rush it, and see if you can start back part time.

    Good luck in your continuing recovery,

  • I had a two level PLIF in Dec. L4-S-1. I just had my hardware removed because of pain. I am 4 weeks out from that and still have pain. I was fused enough at 9 months to take it out, but I dont know yet what my outcome will be. Sorry I cant help you. I think that the Dr wouldnt want you sitting for more than 15 minutes or so yet for a few months. It is wise to ask him/her. Sorry I couldnt be of more help to you.Good Luck.
  • I had my level 2 in 2002 and returned to work rather quickly. I was back to work in 3 weeks. I did work up my hours. 4 hours for 2 weeks then 6 hours then 8 hours. I was only 31 and very active as well. I am not sure why my recovery went so well. My hardware was never removed either, I guess I am very lucky when it comes to that. The company I worked for took it very seriously and had my desk setup correctly with ergonomic keyboards, phones and an awesome leap chair. Please do not rush it and maybe starting back as I did and increasing your hours a little at a time may help. I couldn't get up and walk as need but I would and still do stretch and stand at my desk several times an hour.
    I can't advise on the children issue because I couldn't have children due to my cancer but I remember my NS stating' before he remembered, that child birth might be difficult but not impossible.

    Good luck to you.
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