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10 day follow up post ACDF..what to expect?

TatiyanaTTatiyana Posts: 194
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:42 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Well, its time for my follow up tomorrow folllowing my ACDF and I am starting to get anxious. Can anyone tell me what to expect?

I do have stiches along with tape & possibly glue so I assume they will remove the stiches tomorrow? Wondering if I should soak off the steri strips rather than have them painfully pull them off tomorrow...any thoughts?

also wondering how long before most of you were released to return to work. My job requires lifting 35-55 pounds on a regular basis plus driving long distances.

TIA :)



  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    I expect they will take an x-ray and remove any remaining tape/coverings from the neck incision. Can you visibly see stitches? Mine were internal and there was just one small one poking out that had to be cut as it didn't dissolve with the the internal ones that dissolve.

    Ask the doctor when you can start using scar products. The BEST thing I ever did was get 45 spf lip balm from Banana Boat and applied it to the scar often when outdoors. The less sun it gets the more it will fade. I also used bio-oil. I could not use Mederma as it's made from natural botanical ingredients which must be closely related to the things in nature that cause my hay fever. Thus for whatever you want to apply to the scar, first test it on another area of the neck nearby and give it a few hours to see if you have any adverse reaction.

    As for going back to work, given what you have to lift, I would estimate at least 3 months from the date of surgery. Are you on any kind of paid disability (STD, WC, etc) from work? Disability insurance companies and WC companies look at the type of surgery and the requirements of your job and use standard disability guidelines (I used to do disability claims). For my desk job with occasional driving (local) I had to remain out 6 weeks each time I had neck surgery.

    Hope this helps, let me know how it goes.

    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
  • yes I am on STD now and they said they are moving me to Long Term on March 22...made me wonder how long I would be off since alot of what I am reading says 4-6 weeks for recovery..of course recovery & working are 2 different things!

    I wondered about the stiches...everything seems inside except 2 loops tied off on each end. I hope this scar heals well..its bigger than I expected it to be.
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