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Post Op Discomforts

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:37 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
First off thankyou to everyone who helped with the idea of walking tons. I have been walking as much as possible, and I actually feel better. But since I have run into a few issues.
The first is eating. I'm not really hungry anymore. I was the day after the surgery and my first day home, but my hunger has left me. I went to eat some noodles today and about 4 bites in I thought for sure I was gonna hurl. They have me on these pain killers, which I only take when I'm about to go to sleep or just waking up. I normally take them with a glass of juice to keep from feeling sick. But I hadn't taken the pills before I ate. I woke up at 5am, took 1.5 then went back to sleep. Woke up at 9, then ate around 1pm, and I was done.
The second is ( I know this is a little gross but I feel better asking here then my doctor right now) bowel movements. I havn't had the urge to even try to go, and normally I'm a in and out kinda of woman. Doesn't take me longer then 3 minutes from when I feel like I have to go. I thought about taking something but I remembered I get horrible stomach cramps, and I don't know how they would go with the pain killers to begin with.
I'm wondering if it's all related to the pain meds, or if it's just a part of the normal process from the surgery. Thankyou all for helping, and I feel better having got that question out of the way. I'm thinking I'm 25 and falling apart!


  • Hello! I am 3 weeks today post op from a PLIF procedure. I too, had some major issues with the BM's. I think it has to do with our guts being in "limbo" from being under general anesthesia and the pain pills. Basically, I was told to use stool softeners-such as Docusate or generic brands. If this does not work, take a laxative as you may be feeling more sick due to not being able to go to the loo! :0) In terms of your appetite...I was sick for almost a week and-a-half after my procedure. I think mainly from those darn pain pills. I hope you are getting plenty of help with your little ones...I don't have any yet, but I am the second oldest of fourteen children...I know how they can be a challenge!

    Take care of yourself!!


  • A few things that worked for me:

    Soft and tasty items like fruit smoothies - yum. I could sip a bit at a time and just savor the taste.

    But, that was about 2 weeks post op. The first 10 days I was clear liquids only. You are still early days.

    As for BM's - My nurse had me take a swig of prune juice (a whole small can) along with a dose of Milk of Magnesia. Watch out - within 2 hours it'll hit. This was not until day 9. Before that I was not doing anything on my own, even still had the catheter until day 7 or 8 ish.

    If you have someone who can do some running, have them look for a Senna tea (I found it in the dieter's tea section of the herb store). It works overnight. Not as potent as the Prune juice coctail, but still pretty powerful stuff.

    Good luck

  • Hi Ladies,

    Please check out this thread under Pain medication in the forum. It has many posts about dealing with constipation from pain medications. You are not alone! It's quite common with all the spineys on this site. :D


    Also, if the pain pills are making you nauseous and killing your appetite, please call your doctors office and speak with a nurse. I'm sure they can call you in antinausea meds or recommend something over the counter. You might want to try something easy on your stomach like mashed potatoes.

    Good luck with your recovery,

    Take care,

  • I had 3-level ACDF with plating on 9/23 and have experienced the constipation beyond belief. They gave me the prune juice and Milk of Magnesia and it didn't do a thing. Ended up doing suppositories...the only thing that worked. It is better now that I am walking and getting around more.
    Also, the pain meds made me sick to my stomach, but I had to take them...the pain was excruciating. Fortunately, after a week or so I didn't have to take them. Wish you well with your recovery.
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