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3days post op for TLIF L5-S1

Hi everyone. I have a update. I had surgery on the 25th of March and I am in tremendous pain.They put me on oxycodone and flexeral. I am taking them as directed but its not touching my pain. I haven't slept since I have been home except for 30mins to an hour at a time. It hurts my hips to lay on my sides and it hurrs the insicion when I lay on my back. Is there any relief? Any suggestions to help? Please I need some relief.I have pains shooting down my legs to my knees and it hurts to cough. Thank the lord I haven't sneezed yet. The only relief I get is standing, but I can't stand for long cause that starts hurting to and I have tremendous pressure in my back where the insicion is. My back also swells around the insicion. It has gone down some then it will flair right back up. Is any or all of this normal? Thanks for any feedback!
Kimberly taylor


  • RubyTuesdayRRubyTuesday Posts: 195
    edited 03/28/2014 - 11:49 AM
    How many milligrams oxycodone are you taking? Maybe you should s your doctor if you con increase the dosage.

    As for sneezing, here's a tip: when you feel it coming on press that area between your nostrils and upper lip, under the RIGHT nostril. Don't ask me how it works, but it does.

    Sorry I can't be more help. I can tell you from my own experience that it won't be this bad forever. You're in the very early stages, so you have a lot of healing to do. I hope you get some relief soon.
    Synovial cyst removal in 2008. L4-L5 facet joint.
    Lumbar fusion at L4-L5 in December 2013. TLIF posterior entry
  • They have me on 10s ane I think they ar giving me a headache. Thanks for the advice. I think its getting a hare better everyday except for sleeping.
    Kimberly taylor
  • Get in touch with your surgeon or the hospital ASAP. Going days without sleep is not conducive to healing. You need to let them know what's going on, otherwise they'll just assume everything is okay. You may need to be readmitted, especially if you are having trouble taking care of yourself.
  • EscapeFLEEscapeFL Posts: 14
    edited 03/29/2014 - 4:38 AM
    I had my TLIF 3 weeks ago and had Robaxin (along with oxycodone). I thought the Robaxin was much better than the flexeral I had with previous surgeries. I slept every night, except the first night in hospital. The oxycodone also gave me a headache. I wouldn't take it before bed, just 2 tylenol pm, a melatonin and robaxin. Also, my back incisions would swell up when I was laying down (worst in the a.m) and would get better when I was standing or walking. Even a short lay down would cause an increase in swelling. It's completely gone now. Hope you get some rest.
  • LC84LLC84 Posts: 599
    edited 03/31/2014 - 5:18 PM
    I agee about contacting your surgeon. Make sure to mention the swelling, especially if it's getting any worse. I developed swelling about 3 weeks P/O ( different procedure) but they got me in the next day to make sure it wasn't an infection.
    Progressive DDD
    Chronic S1 Radiculopathy
    Discectomy L5-S1 2002
    Discectomy, Laminotomy/Foraminotomy L3-S1 January 2014
    Bilateral SI Joint Fusion and 2 level spinal Fusion October 2014
  • Sleeping much better these days. I did ask about the swelling and its my muscles from where they got moved around during the surgery. Everything is alot better now besides my insicion itching like crazy. I get up and walk everyday around the house. I am able to clean up the kitchen and do the laundry with the help of my grabber thing and my kids. I can't express how happy I am thst this is goin so well! Does anyone know about how long it takes for the insision to heal? Thanks for everybody's help!!
    Kimberly taylor
  • I'm glad to hear you're doing well. My swelling was muscle also. My incision stopped itching and felt pretty well healed around the 3 week mark.
    Progressive DDD
    Chronic S1 Radiculopathy
    Discectomy L5-S1 2002
    Discectomy, Laminotomy/Foraminotomy L3-S1 January 2014
    Bilateral SI Joint Fusion and 2 level spinal Fusion October 2014
  • You shouldn't be doing laundry and cleaning up in the kitchen at 1 week post-op.
    Synovial cyst removal in 2008. L4-L5 facet joint.
    Lumbar fusion at L4-L5 in December 2013. TLIF posterior entry
  • I agree with RubyTuesday, take advantage of this time to rest and heal you will end up going backwards. Also, I'm at 5 weeks and I still have 3 scabs hanging on for dear life....lol
  • MaximummyMMaximummy Posts: 77
    edited 05/02/2014 - 11:50 AM
    Hi, glad you are doing better. ... Scabs : I used pure vitamin E oil after a shower to soften the skin. It is very healing for scars and should soften the scabs ... As for laundry etched .... No bending, lifting or twisting. I know to my cost how even small movements add up over a day and then when pain and soreness set in and you can't wait for the painkillers, you get down and angry with yourself, I was in real denial about how long and sometimes very difficult recovery would be. I am ten weeks post op today for my two level lumbar fusion, also TLIF and until I gave up the mental fight against it by trying to do too much it was more demoralising than now. I am now driving again and have reduced my meds right down. I still cannot walk too far without getting very tired but I am beginning to live a little again by going out a bit, sharing he cooking with my husband, got my hair cut etc. take it slow and you will aid your recovery. Good luck and keep the updates going.
  • Hi, I'm almost at 6 weeks, when did driving improve for you, cuz it still hurts me. It hurts my incision, it hurts to put on the brakes and any sideways bumps kill me. My pain otherwise is ok. I'm still worried about going back to teaching. I honestly don't think I'm ready. I have a Smartboard that I teach on and I know I will be reaching bending and twisting. Plus I get tired pretty easy. I have enough sick days to take the rest of the year off (june6).im seriously considering asking him about it.
  • I am sorry you are still feeling so rough ...at six weeks I knew I could not drive ... Have power steering, automatic, very comfortable old Jaguar .. A lovely car. The problem was more like "where am I going where I won't get exhausted?" And that is why it took me nine weeks and still small local trips. Friends took me out but I found getting in and out of the car difficult.
    As for going back to work ... I obviously don't know your financial situation or how many hours you work. In the UK teachers belong to a Union and I wonder if you do, that it is worth talking to them about modifying your hours and standing,sitting etc. truthfully though, my son teaches and he is always exhausted and he is a strong, fit 30 year old with a strong back. I am only just starting to make meals in the evenings and by the end of the day I cannot wait to shed my corset and lie on the sofa ... Not go back to work, ask to take the maximum time off. I was told three months or so.
    Recovery is proving long and every day is still a bit different and now that I am getting more mobile, I do more and feel tired at the end of the day. I am still getting quite a lot of nerve pain/sciatica which I pray will wear off as the newly decompressed nerves calm down. I still cannot walk far partly because I also have a very arthritic knee and need a knee replacement which I may have to do by the end of the year ... Great, eh? But what is the point in having gone through all this to have a bad knee which impedes all my mobility?
    Keep at it ... We don't notice the small improvements on a daily basis .... I try to look at it week by week. Good luck!
  • Aloha. Not sure the correct terminilogy I had fusion from the back side
    I am on 1/2 tab of 10mg of Oxycodone was on higher but my stomach could not handle it
    I have Extreme burning down both my legs to my feet (had this before surgery but nit as intense as it is now). So dr put me on Lyrica 75mg. 2xday. (This past thurs). I cannot take 2 x. Day. Makes me too messed up. Lack of balance. Just stoned. Plus my husband doesnt want me to take it when he is not here. I cannot fall now. Probably going to call dr on monday about lowering dosage. Not really sure its working still have horrible nerve pain
    Most days i am in bed I have walked outside for a walk about 1000 steps
    My dr protocol is no pt til about 8-10 weeks
    Feel lost with no direction lie i should be walking outside more. I do get up potty, make lunch my dinner but mostly flat on my back
    I know everyones healing and drs are different just wish i had more direction like walk every 3 hours X amount steps or for so long
    Lots of times feeling lost and lonely thru this process the extreme nerve pain does Not help this
    Maui is a beautiful place but not for people with chronic pain
    Fell 11ft 2007 numerous fractures broken arm, 4 head bleeds.
    Nerve blocks, tried stimulator, acupuncture, massage, numerous injections, nerve blocks. Ect. Vitamins
    2011 laminectomy, april 4. 2014 Fusion l5-S1. PLIF
  • Hi. Your op is still very recent. I was also very tired from the oxycodone at the start and would go to bed after lunch to actually sleep every day for a couple of hours after lunch and would be asleep by nine at night for about the first month or five weeks. I also spent a lot of time lying on the bed or sitting in a chair ... Say 20 minutes in the chair and then stand up, walk a couple of rooms etc as I could not sit much. I was and still am in a corset which I found uncomfortable while my flesh and muscles were so sore. If your stomach cannot take so much you either have to ask to try something different and also ask for a tablet to protect your stomach. You need the painkillers to kill the pain but to stop pain building up. Maybe you also need a muscle relaxant to take some pIn and tension in your muscles down .... Like Diazepam .. Small dose (2mg three times a day for me).

    I am now ten weeks post op two level fusion also lower lumbar spine and am still not walking anywhere near as much as I would like .... At a month it was enough just to shower and get dressed and up and down stairs and walking around the house was all I could manage. Try just in your street ... Say five houses and back, next day six houses and back and you could try this morning and afternoon ... Don't walk one longer walk, but more shorter walks.do you have a garden? If so, just try walking there and maybe a chair in the fresh air can mKe you feel better.

    Sounds like you should certainly talk to your doctor about managing your medication .. I kept a pain diary and wrote down what I took, what time I took it Nd how bad the pain was and where the pain was .... So like this:

    Sunday may 3rd, 9am, 10mg OxyCodone + 75mg Lyrica, bad leg pain 9/10. ... Do you see? Then I could show the doctor and we adjusted the medication. The OxyCodone will help the post surgical pain but if the Lyrica isn't working for the nerve pain there are many others your doctor could try you on. I too still have nerve painand unfortunately this is part of the recovery and it can come and go, sometimes not too bad and other times as bad as before the surgery. It is very frustrating that the pain you get while the nerves are coming back to life after being squashed is the same pain as before the surgery .... But this is very common and if you read many of the posts here, you will find so ,many people saying the same thing about nerve pain .
    At a month I was also finding it very difficult and sometimes overwhelming ... Everything was exhausting and sometimes I got very down. I turned a corner at six weeks but it is still up and down and I do things and pay for them later.
    Do not despair ... There is help out there. If you get no help from your surgeon, try your family doctor like I did or ask to be referred to a pAin management specialist. This is VERY EARLY days and it is very difficult at this stage.

    You are NOT alone ... I have found real help and good advice and sympathy and understanding on this forum, so keep posting your progress ... People are very willing to help and I have found that only people who have been through fusion surgery really understand what you are going through ...... Good luck.
  • Thank you so much for your caring suggestions
    Today I woke up and had my leg nerve pain 5/10 took my Lyrica. I am leary about taking the oxy anD lyrica together. Figure i will talk to pharmacist about this. Emotions kicked in and became a pocket of tears. My ten minute nervous breakdown. About 9am seemed like I was more emotional stable.
    Went for a walk 8min. Felt good. I actually did 6 walks today. I was VERY happy with myself. I have started to ice my back which has made a world of difference
    Yes I have felt alone for the last 4 weeks but now that I am reading/responding to this forum it is and will help me alot
    My husband took pics of my scar. I have this beautiful tattoo of a honu (turtle) right where my surgery was. The surgeon did an awesome job you can barely see the incision. I am healing really great on the outside. This made me feel so much better
    I was out of my bedroom all day today that is so rewarding
    Yes my nerve pain is still there this evening but nothing like it has been
    I knew going into this I was in for a long haul. I guess i just hoped my pain would be different not the horrible criipling nerve pain
    My closing note: I had a good day and am looking forward to my first outing tomorrow with my marvelous husband. A little Whole Foods. I love their bacon. Chat later
    Fell 11ft 2007 numerous fractures broken arm, 4 head bleeds.
    Nerve blocks, tried stimulator, acupuncture, massage, numerous injections, nerve blocks. Ect. Vitamins
    2011 laminectomy, april 4. 2014 Fusion l5-S1. PLIF
  • MaximummyMMaximummy Posts: 77
    edited 05/05/2014 - 9:34 PM
    Hi, glad my post helped. Glad you got out of the bedroom and out of the house too .. Well done! If you do have. Couple of bad days after a good day, try not to get too down. I found up to about 8 weeks or so that whatever I did on a good day, I might pay for it with a bad day ... Again, this something normal and you just have to wIt it out until the next good day comes along.
    I have not taken Lyrica, I take another nerve painkiller called amitryptyline, but I was told to take it with the OxyContin which is the main painkiller you are on for your 'surgical' pain from where your back has taken a beating .... You are right to check it out, but my guess from reading what other people are taking when they post here, that they are meant to be taken together because the OxyContin (oxycodone) will not work for your nerve pain.
    I am glad you are able to walk more ... I keep trying but I have a really arthritic right knee which has bee worse since my surgery and it is stopping me from building up the walking ... And I have put weight back on which means I am a bit fed up with myself!
    Keep going!
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