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No PT after ACDF surgery

emma1eemma1 Posts: 13
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:55 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I am 7 weeks post ACDF two-level autograft fusion.

I feel fabulous and have been walking and hiking and just started a Zumba class this week. My surgeon has never mentioned PT. Isn't that a big strange? Maybe I don't need it, but sometimes I worry that I might be overdoing.

Do most people go to PT after surgery/


  • Sounds as though your doing wonderful following the surgery, so more than likely your surgeon won't order the Pt. Some need PT depending on the degree of the issues, and spasms and what not post surgery. But looks like your past all that, so pat yourself on the shoulder, and soon this will be a distant memory for you. Keep up the good work.
  • At my 6 week my surgeon told me I could do anything except rugby and hockey (lol). I take that to mean be reasonable, but do what you want within reason. I wish I was up to Zumba.
    4 level ACDF C4-C7 5-2-11, laminectomy & discectomy L4-L5 1/26/12, ALIF L4-5, L5-S1 12/10/12.
  • My NS didn't prescribe me PT for either of my fusions initially. On my second one, "issues" came up, and he had me try PT. PT put me in such a world of hurt, so he stopped it...different animal though. Otherwise, no PT was given from post surgery except for my issues above.

    It sounds like you're doing very well. Good for you!! Good news is always great to hear! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I am 6 weeks post one level acdf. No pt for me yet. My neck feels much better but I am having a lot of mid and lower back spasms.
    ACDF C4-5 June 23rd, 2011

    Another surgery in the near future. I am 26 years old.

    Current Meds- Norco 7.5/325, Cymbalta 60mg, Gabapentin, Adderall 20mg
  • Wow, four levels! No wonder you don't want to go to Zumba class. My major worry now is whether bones are fusing. I don't have my first x-ray for another three weeks.
  • Hi Emma,

    I am two weeks post-op for a two-level ACDF and feeling great. I also have had 4 previous fusion surgeries for lumbar and cervical. He has never mentioned PT once to me.

    Good luck! :-)

  • 3+ months out of a C5 to C7 ACDF and no PT for me. Doc never even uttered a word about it. So far so good.

    Now with the back surgery it was a different story :)

    Best of luck with your recovery.

    View my history for all the gory details.
  • Emma, good for you! I think that if you are over doing things, your body would let you know! My neuro said no pt, and that I could drive after sutures come out in a week. I am going back tomorrow to chat with him some more to better understand my situation. I asked about pain meds after and his nurse said people have such good outcomes, that they don't need/call for refills. Sounds to good to be true, but you give me hope. Keep up the great recovery.
  • Have you had x-rays showing if you are fusing or not? I haven't had any yet. Just waiting........

    Are you still in pain?
  • What are you doing for the back spasms?

    I don't have spasms, but my neck muscles are sore. I'm not sure what PT would do for me but the doctor certainly hasn't mentioned it. I'm not suggesting it because I have spent waaaay too much time at PT. Two years ago I had knee surgery, then last year I had a burst L1 fracture, so lots of PT for that. And then of course PT for neck pain.

    So, I think I'll hold off. The only thing bothering me is neck muscles and I think I can live with that.
  • Glad to hear no PT for you. How are you feeling at three months? How active are you. What can or can you not do?
  • emma1 said:
    Glad to hear no PT for you. How are you feeling at three months? How active are you. What can or can you not do?

    Since my ACDF on April 27, 2011, I feel GREAT!!! The only thing I really miss is the surprise of loosing complete feeling and control of my arm at the most inopportune moment (sarcasm filter alert) :)

    Concerning my ACDF, I am more active than before surgery (all things considered). The hardest part for me is getting used to my reduced head movement. But my neck lets me know when I push it to far.

    Driving in the big city, or during rush hour does take its toll and causes a pain in the neck. But so far, that is the only bad thing I have experienced since surgery.

    Hope your recovery is going well.

    View my history for all the gory details.
  • No one calls for med refills!? That is crazy. My doctor is good too.... but we did just have a major spinal surgery!

    I saw my doc on Monday and while I thought he was going to send me to PT, he is sending me to a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Doctor. I couldn't get in with this doctor until mid Sept. So who knows.

    My doc took me off muscle relaxants, saying it might be causing more harm than good. So for right now I am using heat pads and massage, as well as hydrocodone 7.5 some nights.
    ACDF C4-5 June 23rd, 2011

    Another surgery in the near future. I am 26 years old.

    Current Meds- Norco 7.5/325, Cymbalta 60mg, Gabapentin, Adderall 20mg
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