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Post surgery weight gain

Hello - my surgery was on 3/23/18. I had T4-L4 fusion for scoliosis and chronic pain. My post surgery weight went up 40 pounds! They weighed me today which is one week after the first weigh in and I have lost 15 pounds. Has anyone else had such an extreme gain? I feel that all the extra fluid is slowing me down. I am taking low dose Lasix. Also having some issues with low blood pressure so they probably need to take it slow. I'm currently in an inpatient rehabilitation facility but am going home Friday.  My surgeon is happy with the outcome and so far, I seem to be making good progress . Still taking 10mg. Of oxycodone every 4 hours. Not sure if this is usual for the intensity of the surgery or not. Do they usually change you to something else after several weeks? I was thrilled to come across this site - seems so helpful with support and information. 




  • hi lollypeg

    welcome to the group. I was on so much pain meds that I lost 20 lbs because I couldn't eat. so are you going home soon? once you are home you will ween off pain meds as you heal, for the first 3 months the pain can be high at times. I noticed my first big jump in progress at 3 moths post. that was a big noticeable jump forward. don't feel bad if after a few step forwards you have a set back, its normasl..as we say 3 steps forward one step back..thats the way of recovery...lol again welcome and keep us informed as to how your progressing, any questions, just ask. I was fussed from t9 to s2 with pelic fixation dec 14, 2016

  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 1,442

    hiya and welcome!  immediately after my surgery i gained 10 with the swelling from the surgery.....that vanished quickly (within a week) and my weight shot down 30 pounds....to the point that my kidneys started showing damage....alas, at a year post surgery i'm now 5 pounds up from my presurgery weight (because i'm not doing as much physically....sigh).  it's a rough surgery on the body, and it takes a long time to heal.  my doctors told me that even though there was swelling once i started moving it would help getting the liquid out, and i was up and trying to walk the day after my surgery.....it did get better.....

    the pain drugs are needed for sure, it depends on the doctor and what works for you as to what you'll be on.  we can't get oxy here anymore, so i was on tramadol before surgery, then morphine (didn't work), then hydromorphone (much better)....weaned off that in short order (a few weeks) after the surgery because my pain was so much less than before surgery.  then back to tramadol, and now it's just tylenol or ibuprofen most days that i need anything at all.  if you have good pain control stay ahead of the pain, if you don't, make sure you talk with your doctor about getting something that will help. 

    i wish you a speedy and good recovery!  be patient-that's a LONG fusion that you had, and it takes it's own sweet time to heal up.....i'm 15 months out now and back to relative normal, but it is a long slow haul.  be kind to yourself and accept that there will be GREAT days (don't push yourself!!!) and not so great days (sleep lots LOL).....you will get there.  Hopefully you can head home soon, and i sure hope that swelling goes down soon!!!!  Like xrobynx said, 3 months was a magic number for me too, huge improvements, and i was back to working 4 months after my surgery. 

    please pop back in and keep us posted!  we're happy to help any way we can, and folks here were invaluable for those days that i would get up and go "wow, is this NORMAL??!".  LOL.  i had my surgery 5 days after xrobynx....and it's uncanny how we are going through the same kinds of things at roughly the same time.  I am T10 to S2 with pelvic fixation....so quite a bit shorter than yours....i see you aren't fused L4-5-S1.  that should help with your mobility down the road.....once you are healed. for now, hang in there! one step at a time.

    Spine-Health Moderator
    Dec '16 T10-S2 fusion with pelvic fixation. Laminectomies L2, L3, L4, L5, facet removal, cages L4-5, L5-S1, severe scoliosis, arthritis and stenosis repair. 

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  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 1,442

    how are you doing lollypeg??

    Spine-Health Moderator
    Dec '16 T10-S2 fusion with pelvic fixation. Laminectomies L2, L3, L4, L5, facet removal, cages L4-5, L5-S1, severe scoliosis, arthritis and stenosis repair. 

  • Hi lollypeg

    Welcome to Spine-health

    I can see that two of our very valued and supportive members have linked in with you already.

    This site is a great find and you will find it great support through your recovery.  Not sure if you have found our Surgery Buddies groups as yet but if not, look under Forum Topics and click on a group and just add a comment to join in.

    As WLLady said, be kind to yourself as you have had a very extensive surgery there.  Sleep is very important for the healing as well as mobilising whenever able, so a good dose of both of those will help on the medication list :-).  Mobilise little and often and take time to find your baseline.  Once your body feels able to, you will know and will be able to increase slowly.  Everybody is different and I think we have all overdone it at times and had to pull back to the baseline and creep back up again.

    I have added two links below to help new members with information and these also contain the forum rules.  There is lots of material to research on Spine-health that will give you the power of knowledge.

    Welcome to Spine Health

    Take care and update us when you feel able.  Sometimes, just reading on here was all I could do in the early days of recovery.




    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015
    L4-S1 TLIF with decompression June 2017
  • I had my fusion of 12 vertebrae on April 10th of this year. I have gained around 15lbs and loss a lot of muscle tone. I don’t take oxycodone and have been off it since 5 days post op. 

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  • I'm doing quite well. Some bad days for sure, but the good days are coming more often. I'm still taking some oxy, but much less than before. Doing physical therapy and exercising once or twice daily. Using cane or walker most of the time. Trying not to use either much in the house per therapist. Still wearing the brace. Usually can't wait to go to bed at night so I can take it off . It becomes extremely uncomfortable in the evenings. Hope to be out of the brace in the next 2-4 weeks, but I don't see my doctor until 7/17. When do you quit feeling the hardware every time you move with the brace off? Thanks for your support .

  • hi Lollypeg

    hang In there..i did not have to ware my brace if I was sitting down, so when on the solfa I took it off.. because my pain was off the charts right after surgrey I was on so much meds I could not eat and dropped 20 lbs. folks got worried but no one thought to reduce my meds and I was so high I didn't know what was going on. I wished they would have taken me off some of it at rehab hosp and not sent me home like that, I was so high I forgot I took the meds and took then again..i also had no one to advacate for me so it was hard to reliz how messed up I was...lol but one day I went cold turkey, then in two days was in the er..said I should of tapered off not cold turkey,..lol but that's when I started to eat and gains weigh back..plus some..and lost all muscle tone also..now to lose weight is much harder. good luck keep doing pt, don't worry about the weight just yet..wait till you are fussed..for right now you need extra nurisment to heal.

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