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Spinal surgery #2

Hi everyone I'm Patty I had a 2nd spinal surgery stemming from my scoliosis surgery not healing all the way in L5-S1 as a child. My husband and  travel quit a bit. I had a note from my Dr. to show the airline but they didn't want to see it. We just flew back from Hawaii and going we flew American and Hawaiian then flying home we flew Delta. As much as I was blessed that Delta gave us an upgrade to comfort+ I was still EXTREMELY  uncomfortable nor could I get comfortable and that was with a lumbar pillow and neck pillow. We are flying to San Antonio in a month and I could sure use some advice on how to maybe see how to get upgraded to business class that does have larger seats on Southwest. I know they do it all the time but I would love some advice on how to get to board and sit in the more comfortable seats so Im not in tears when we get there like I was when we got to Hawaii and then when we got home from Hawaii. Any advice is appreciated. Be blessed!




  • Hi Patty, sorry for your discomfort.  I'm a little confused, are you asking how to get a 'free' upgrade due to your surgeries and scoliosis?  Can you just purchase a business class seat in the first place?  Not trying to be unsympathetic or anything but sometimes we just have to change the way we do things after life altering conditions alter our lives.  I have a 10 level fusion stemming from my scoliosis and when I fly I wear a TLSO brace.  It is rigid against my back so keeps my spine from trying to fill in the hollow present in airline seats.  Seems to work well.  Also get up and move a little if on a flight that is going to last several hours.  Hey, at least you are able to travel, some lose that ability after life changing events.  But seriously, check out TLSO braces.  More comfortable than they appear.

    10 level fusion T9 - S1 with pelvic fixation. Two titanium rods, 24 screws, 4 cages.

    Firm believer in PMA

  • At least it’s not an international flight. Just remind yourself a flight is a very short-term thing. It will be over before you know it.

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  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 1,494

    hi patty,  welcome to spine health

    all new members should take the system tutorial

    ah flying.....so uncomfortable!  i flew to germany and back at 15 or so months post surgery, and ended up spending my week there recovering and my first week back recovering from the flights.  i had no idea that a doctor's note could up status on a plane.....i did however find that amazingly i did not set off the metal detectors in the airport!  amazing to me anyways.....

    you can always call the airlines and ask....also, can you talk with your doctor about things that might make it easier?  one thing i will do next time is make sure that i have a wheelchair to get through the lineups.  because standing in a 2 hour line up after being on an 8 hour flight was torture for me.  the walking was good-and i would get up and walk in the airplane....that was necessary. 
    i hope you can find something that works!  oh, i spent one flight in first class before my surgery, on an international flight, and honestly, i didn't find the chairs much better at all....they are still airplane chairs....lol. 
    Veritas-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. 

  • Jerome001Jerome001 Cocoa Beach, FloridaPosts: 377

    I traveled for several years for work after fusion surgeries and wore a brace, etc. Never ever got an upgrade for the condition. Only free upgrades were after I flew enough to earn "status" as a frequent traveler. I'd be surprised if they gave anyone a free upgrade for back issues as that would probably open the flood gates. Good luck!

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