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Question about limitations after surgery?

ohmybackoohmyback Posts: 39
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:51 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
My TLIF is scheduled for this coming Thursday, and I met with my doctor one last time to ask a few more questions. This one surprised me quite a bit. I asked when I could pick up my daughter who weighs 27lbs...and he told me as soon as it doesn't hurt anymore. As I understand it, most doctors place strict limits on how much you can lift. What do you all think? I think it's very odd.


  • Your going to have to go with your surgeons advice. If you trust him/her to do the surgery, then trust their guidelines following surgery. I am assuming he has a idea of how long you will be in pain. Although I am further out from surgery than you, had a appointment this week with my surgeon and he said do whatever you can, if hurts stop and go lay down. I left wondering what does that really mean. But I am trusting he knows with the hardware I can't hurt anything and if it hurts than that would be out of my limits, so to speak. Good luck with surgery.
  • i am due a ALIF fusion sometime this year but i have been told that post operation i must not life bend or twist for months i would advise that you do the same .a fusion is an invasive procedure and it will take time for your body to mend ..look after it you dont want to be back in theater again a few weeks after your operation good luck
    1997 laminectomy
    2007 repeat laminectomy and discectomy L4/L5
    2011 ALIF {L4/L5/S1}
    2012 ? bowel problems .still under investigation
    2014 bladder operation may 19th 2014
  • I wouldn't think of lifting my kids until several months after surgery and only after I was specifically cleared to lift their particular weight.

    My case was a little different since I was a workers comp issue. I refused to go above what my doctor recommended so that I wouldn't jeopardize my status.

    That being said, in a weird kind of way, my body told me when it was okay to lift my kids. If it just doesn't feel right, don't do it.

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • Im 3 months out from alif surg and they still wont let me lift beyond 5 lbs...but thats just my surgeon i can do no blt!....at 27 months they pretty much can follow you and can get up on chair i know thta sounds silly but when i had my nephew who is 25 months old i would grab chair and he would climb on it to get lovings and help do whatever he wanted i wish you all the best!
  • I'm 16 months out ALIF and I still don't lift heavy weights - I'll only carry a third of a bucket of water for the plants (ie water from the air conditioner) or half a basket of washing to the line, nor do I carry heavy loads of groceries. I exercise regularly to strengthen my back, including light dumbbell exercises and walking. Fusion can put a strain on the adjacent segments, and I want to make sure that I do everything I can to protect my back.

    Once you're fused, it's a matter of working out what you can carry or how much you can twist or bend. Your back will soon let you know. Same thing goes for sitting and standing - you will get to know your limitations. My understanding is that it takes 12 - 15 months for the fusion to become strong, and I could feel more strength at around the 12 months mark. In the meantime, during the fusing process, just be very careful. It's your one time to get your back well again.

    When your doctor said you could lift your daughter when it doesn't hurt any more, that could be months because the healing process is a long one. I was 6 months before I started to feel "normal" again. You're much younger than me, so perhaps you will heal more quickly.

    Hope your surgery goes well this week and when you're able to, do let us know how you're going.


    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
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