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when to return to work

mike 29mmike 29 Posts: 35
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:40 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I am a 30 yr. old plumber. I had a plif on oct.28 09. I have pain in my lower back still and the cold weather locks my back in to place. I work outside 90% of the time. So my question is when do you go back to work after this surgery.


  • I went back after my PLIF at 11 weeks post op. My job is not that physical and my office is in my home (lucky right) but I drive a lot and have trade shows to work in. I was still sore and I got tired by about 3 pm daily.

    I was afraid that my employer would give my job to some one else. The good thing about working was I forced my mind to not think about my spine and I think my long term recovery was sped up.

    My NS is not big on baby'in things along. I did not have a brace from my surgery but I did use my brace from before my surgery on the long days- it helped a lot. I would put it on after I started getting tired.

    I took a lot of breaks if I was on my feet. Laying down for 5 minutes was excellent.

  • My surgeon tells people to count on anywhere from three to six months off, depending on how strenuous is there job. Your fusion will not be solid for a good year, so you will need to be cautious even after you return to work.
  • I was back to work at 5 1/2 months post fusion. It was not easy, but it really was a good thing for me. It helped me get going again.
  • Going back to work depends on how you feel, if you are able to do your job (lifing, twisting, bending) and most importantly when your Doctor gives you the clearance.
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