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Post back surgery sensations

Besides possible nerve or regular pain what does the back feel like post surgery
In my case (L5 burst fracture repair with rods and screws) I have a constant feeling that something is pressing on my back. Also when I attempt to walk the muscles around the surgical area feel like they are pulling in all different directions causing me to not be able to walk normally. It feels like I'm constantly feeling the hardware. Right after surgery I was in horrible pain but a couple weeks later that was replaced with the uncomfortable feelings described above. Do these feelings eventually subside? I can't imagine having to live like this forever.


  • Hello!

    Welcome to the forums! Question: How long ago did you have your surgery? I'm guessing 4-6 weeks ago? It's going to take time for your body to adjust.....the ligaments, muscles and so on. I'm no doctor and just a fellow spine patient, but my surgeon wanted me to walk as much as I can tolerate--not going overboard. Basically, in my experiences it did take a little time but as the days went by, I felt a bit better each day.

    Hope you feel better! :-)

  • I had my surgery Feb 25th, so it's been over 2 months. I simultaneously had a severely dislocated knee so it was actually two surgeries. I spent about one month in the hospital and one week in skilled nursing before coming home. I still only have about 90 degrees of ROM in my knee. I can weight bear but my back feels very tight and pulling with each step.
    How does your back feel these days? Sorry to see you've had some set backs.
    Thank you Anne
  • See all that hardware in me? You get use to your new back. That's the best answer I can give you, you get use to it... and once you do, it will no longer bother you and you'll go about your life. Now I do need to make the disclaimer, I didn't have a burst fracture, so I don't know how that would be. Try to take it easy, let your body heal, and let your mind settle. I promise you will continue to see improvements. Best of luck to you. Keep us posted. And do listen to your body... if you think something isn't right, call and get an x-ray.
    33yo mom of two. My surgical history...preadolescence scoliosis, kyphosis, and a hot mess.... 5 spine surgeries and lots of items added I wasn't born with (titanium, peek, surgical steel). Guess cremation is out. TSA loves me.
  • All Metal said that perfectly......you are getting used to a lot of new changes between your back and your knee.

    And yes........definitely be kind to your body. :-)

  • I'm going to pipe up with what others have said....it takes time to get used to it. I had a fractured spinous process on my L5 along with several other issues in that joint and had my L5/S1 TLIF on January 16th. I eventually got used to it, although it's now my gauge as to whether or not I've pushed too hard. When I overdo it, I still get the feeling that my muscles want to reject the hardware.

    Since you mentioned your knees, I've found that (for me) my knee issues are cropping back up because of how the surgery recovery has changed how I walk/limp. It's part of my physical therapy rehab process right now and it's not much fun. Walk as much as you can tolerate :-)
    1/16/2013 Minimally invasive TLIF with rods, screws, and cage on L5/S1 joint to treat grade 2 spondylolysthesis, pars defect, degenerative disc disease. Dealt with chronic pain & nerve issues since at least 2007.
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