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L-4/5 Fusion 4.14.14 1st week expectations?

Hello! Home after surgery on 4.14, fusion for degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis and disc herniation. Came home after 24 hours and have been resting. Have made it downstairs, have showered and am getting up and walking around about once an hour. Still pretty painful and sore, especially sitting and getting up and also adjusting in bed. It seems a little better each day but I wanted to see what others have experienced, am I on track, etc. Also anything to watch out for? I am experience some additional soreness and pain in the left leg. Ps, I'm a 47 yo female, have dealt with back pain for years. After a year of PT, shots and other diagnostic tests, scheduled the surgery. Thank you!!


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • mjd210mmjd210 Posts: 92
    edited 04/20/2014 - 1:48 AM
    I just had an ALIF L4-S1 on April 9th. I'm pretty soar as well. I just try to walk as much as possible. I feel like I am getting better each day. It may not be an enormous difference but little by little certain things are getting easier.

    Trying to find a comfortable position has been my biggest challenge. If anyone has any good ideas please shout them out!!
    alif l4-s1
  • Agreed, a little better each day but getting comfortable is a challenge!!
  • Sounds like you are doing well. I am 6 1/2 weeks from L4L5 fusion. I found that I would get better for a few days and then would plateau for a few days. The only residual pain I have now is a mild back ache on left side where they did most of the work. I was able to sit more at the 2 week mark. The first couple of days I did feel like a beached whale in bed! It would take forever to get repositioned only to realize that I wasn't comfortable and would have to start the process again.
  • my story ..{its my 3rd op] after the ALIF I woke in the most horrific pain known to man ..it took hours just to get the pain from a 10+ to a 10 ! I spent the next 2 days in pure hell then after about the 3rd day the pain came to settle at a 9.9 after being in hospital for a week I was allowed home .I was so ill for a full 6 weeks I was unable to move from my recliner just going to the toilet was an effort my wife has to help me shower as bending and twisting was not just not advised but I could hardly stand up and after the shower I was just washed out and need to get back on my recliner where I lay zombie for the next 6 weeks ..I still get tired quickly and there are many things that I can't do and my pain is still a constant 8/9 spiking to a 10 on some days .walking causes my legs and feet to swell and they are pain just bending [as to load the washer] that's all it takes to make my legs swell .it feels like someone is stood on my abdomen I can feel pressure above and below the scar [like a garden hose if you bend it whilst there is water going through it .my legs and face feel like they are going to burst .I did not have any problems before the ALIF just backache !! just one word of caution DONT over do things I know a few on here that have felt wonderful post op and have done far too much and they have had to have a redo of their original operation or even worse so be very careful you have just had major surgery
    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
  • mjd210mmjd210 Posts: 92
    edited 04/20/2014 - 11:58 PM
    Thanks for the tips Tony. I feel pretty good from surgery and I have to keep reminding myself not to do too much! Its so hard not to want to go outside and do stuff after being cooped up all winter and the weather has been perfect lately!! I guess walking and chilling out outside will have to do!
    (Now only if the pool was open and I had a cold beer)
    alif l4-s1
  • RubyTuesdayRRubyTuesday Posts: 195
    edited 04/21/2014 - 5:24 AM
    It sounds like you're doing very well. I had a TLIF L4-L5 fusion on 12/30/13 and am doing very well at this point (4 months out). My most difficult thing was also getting comfortable in bed too. Just trying to get up on my elbows to reposition myself was like an Olympic event, but it does get easier. Keep up the good work!
    Synovial cyst removal in 2008. L4-L5 facet joint.
    Lumbar fusion at L4-L5 in December 2013. TLIF posterior entry
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