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4 weeks post op fusion pain

Jewelsa618JJewelsa618 Posts: 2
edited 09/24/2015 - 12:38 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
How long on average can I expect to have pain? I still need my narcotic pain medicine every 4 hours. I never knew how painful this surgery would be. I am more active then I was 3 weeks ago but still need to lay down a lot. About 2 weeks father surgery noticed tender pain on left side. When I lay on my back I can feel the hardware on left side and the pain shoots down my whole left side, I am sure it's nerve pain. Anyone with experience with this surgery any input will really help me. Thanks in advance.

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  • Can be totally normal this early out. I wouldn't get too concerned until 3+ months out if it's still happening. If the pain seems to be outside of what your Dr. told you "normal" would be, I would check in with him\her.
  • hvillshhvills Suzhou, ChinaPosts: 722
    edited 09/28/2015 - 8:34 PM
    Dear Jewelsa618...

    Recovery from fusion surgery is months not weeks. I've been through 2 fusion surgeries. On the first I was virtually pain free from the time I woke up. I only had to tolerate the pain and discomfort from the surgery itself. Having said that it took almost 12 months before I felt 100% completely back to normal. The bone fusion process is very slow... particularly if you are older.

    On my second surgery it was a whole different story. When I woke up after surgery virtually ALL of the nerve pain I felt before the surgery was still there... boy was I upset and frustrated. However my doctor said be patient it will get better. In the end he was right but it took almost 4 months and a daily dose of Oxycodone before I was out of pain. The relief came quite suddenly... one day at almost exactly 4 months I woke up and all of the sciatic pain and misery was just gone... I was thrilled. My surgeon said that it sometimes takes that long for the spinal nerve swelling and related nerve irritation to go away.

    Hang-in there... fusion surgery recovery is a marathon... not a sprint.

    Harry - 63 year old male...
    PLIF L4-L5-S1 due to disc degeneration... May 23, 2013
    PLIF L5-S1 due to failed fusion and broken screw... Jan 19, 2015
    Microdiscectomy, decompression L3-L4 due to herniated disc... Jan 19, 2015
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