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having a hard time eating

jayhawkjjayhawk Posts: 1,032
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:42 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hey friends! I am one week post 360 L4-5 fusion ~WOOHOO, I had a lot of medical complications~pneumonia, plurasey, 3 blood transfusions. my blood work showed; anemia,low calcium, magnesium,(that's all I can remember). This was all post op so I really want to do all I can to get my healthy again. I eat very healthy~low fat/sugar, whole grains, no meat, organic produce, etc.

My problem is, I have NO appetite. In the hospital, I stayed on the bland/liquid diet for several days (my choice) chicken broth, jello (yuck) pudding, but ate very little, I tried so hard, by the end I enjoyed scrambled egg whites, a bit of pasta,

Now that I am home, I get hungry and I really do want to eat, but I just can't eat very much. Like a fourth of a severing.

Has this happened to anyone one else? I know I need to eat and eat well, I really am trying so hard, but I'm struggling! Open to any ideas! Thanks "spineys" ya'll are the best!


  • Glad to see you up and kicking! I had a lot of trouble in the hospital, rather like your. I totally lost my appetite in the hospital. Even once I started to get hungry, nothing tasted right. I really think this was an after effect of so much medicine. I left the hosp. on day 8, and once I got home, it was still I bet nearly a week before anything tasted normal.

    It sounds as though you have had quite a trip! Getting better though? Hey, after a while, you'll be hungry as a horse. It happened to me.. Glad you're better girl.

  • Yes, I agree with Aaron's analysis of events. You not only went through a BIG surgery but much trauma afterward too. How about drinking smoothies that are packed with nutrition or have someone buy some of those canned nutrition boosters like Ensure? Otherwise, just try to take a bit of something nutritious every hour or so...

    While you were away, you missed my recent denouement. At the last minute, I was told my insurance provider would not cover my surgery...so all geared up, and no place to go. I am actually envious of you, even with all your new predicaments!

    Anyway, I think you'll find that your appetite will gradually return. In the meantime, just force yourself to eat a little something every hour or two just to keep up your energy to heal.

    You've been through the hardest part...things should get a bit easier each day.

    Take good care,
  • Even with my microdiscectomy (especially the 1st one), I just wan't hungry. My family would bring me food and I kept telling them "less" that's too much. Even looking at it didn't settle.

    Eat smaller meals more frequently. Did they recommend a multi-vitamin for you? I think it might be a good idea but I'm not a doctor. I only say it b/c I had low calcium and magnesium too and when they tried to give me some I think the magnesium dropped my BP more so they ended up giving me an IV. Of course to get released, you had to eat.

    Egg whites are good, whole wheat pasta even plain or with a little butter (or EOO), I'd say yogurt but it took me time to stomach that. I actually found saltines, social tea cookies (they aren't very sweet), pasta, and eggs were about the only thing I even could think about for a week.

    Even if it's small amounts...eat little bits at a time.
  • Hi jay...

    With my last major surgery, I couldn't eat much of anything for at least a week--food just tasted awful. I think it was a side effect of anesthesia or other meds I was given. Obviously, food doesn't taste bad to you but you do understand, I'm sure, that when you go a few days without eating your stomach shrinks down and you can't eat as much food as normally. As long as you don't have something else causing your lack of appetite, just keep trying bits of nutritious food and drinks and you'll be back to eating normally before long. You may even find this unintentional "diet" to help you out during your long recovery when you're not as active and may tend to gain weight. ;)

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
  • I'm with Gwennie. You can drink one bottle of Ensure or other type product like this and get the nutrients you need for one meal. I've gotten in the "I don't want to eat" mode lately, so I got myself some Ensure to help me out. I even drink one with my cereal in the morning sometimes as a supplement.

    Take care.
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