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Sleeping after ACDF Surgery

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:23 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hi Everyone,

I will be having ACDF on C5-C6 on October 6 and was wondering what the most comfortable way to sleep is. Should I sleep in a recliner or is it more comfortable sleeping on a wedge pillow? I have both and was wondering what most of you have done after surgery. Any advice on this topic would be greatly appreciated, as well as any other pointers anyone has to make recovery more comfortable. I just don't know what to expect and I am very nervous about the surgery. Thank you for reading this, I look forward to hearing your imput.



  • For me, I slept in a recliner for about the first two weeks. It was the most comfortable position for me at the time. After that, I used a wedge pillow and kind of turned it so my head fit long ways in the wedge. It sounds weird but it worked for me. Funny thing is, without the collar now, I still sleep that way. Will you be in a collar?

    I can understand about being nervous. I had my surgery on July 9th and this forum really helped me out. I was actually very calm the morning of my surgery and was in the hospital for 4 days. I've only ever been under for my wisdom teeth and a knee surgery, so I was a bit nauseous.

    Other than that, things went great. Still have a little numbness and tingling, especially after a long day at work but that's to be expected since it's only been about 11 weeks now.

    I'm sure other members will give their thoughts as well.


  • I will be in a collar, that in it self seems like sleeping will be difficult. That's why I asked the forum for tips. Thank you for your input :) , I will be putting your tips to use.

    Take care,
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  • I had a hard collare for three weeks after then nothing. no problem sleeping in my bed with pillow from day 2 when i got home. After not sleeping much for a month before from all the pain and have no pain after surgery sleeping we great.
    I guess it depends on person, i'd have trouble sleeping in recliner no matter what. I would not worry ACDF surgery is not that bad and not much pain assocated with surgery for most.
    ps, the collar you get used too, i sort of missed it after the 3 weeks.
    cannot drive with it thats what bothered me the most.
  • welcome and hi christi, for me i did not sleep more than 2 hours at a time for the first 2 months at home, don't know why but i would dose off in the car in church etc... my wife got a plywood board i had in storage and it was covered with indoor/outdoor carpet. she raised one end with about 3 big pillows and put a soft pillow on top of the board. that is how i slept on my back w/ a hard neck collar. still fuzzy about it over 1 yr later. i hope u are going to have help when u come home - its alot easier. have straws that will bend, soft foods like yogurt,ice cream,pudding jello, simple soups,cup o noodles, etc.... i had a difficult time swallowing and i could not lay flat because i would girggle. after i took the collar off i bought a temper pedx pillow because normal pillows put too much pressure on the back of my head. we have just purchased a new lane dual sofa recliner w/ pillowtop and it is soooooooo comfortable and soft. others will have more ideas and u will have to find out what will work for u. there are other posts with alot of this info also.
  • christi r u having a NS do the surgery? good luck and i will say a prayer 4 u. kc
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  • Christi,

    Hope everything goes well with you the day of surgery. I feel the same way as you. NERVOUS!! Thanks for the question, I was wondering the same thing. I've heard so many different stories. Not sure what to expect. I will be praying for you, the day of your surgery. Let me know things go.

  • Hi KC,

    Yes, a Neurosurgeon is doing my surgery. Fortunately, he is well respected and supposed to be an excellent surgeon. Thank you for your comments and for the prayer.

    Take care,
    Christi :)
  • Hi Beth,

    Thank you for the comment! Sounds like we are in the same boat.....Nervous and not sure what to expect :SS ! I will also say a prayer for you that your surgery goes well. I will post an update as soon as I am able. Good luck with your surgery.

    God bless,
  • Hi Christi,
    I read your post with interest as I also have C5-6 problems and therefore have the same concerns as you so am interested in the answers you recieved in this post.
    I wish you the very best for your op and a speedy recovery.
  • hey Christi,
    I tried to sleep in the recliner but could not sleep. So for me I found my answer was to take a lot of pillows and make a big U and put my body in the middle. Success!!!
    I am a side sleeper and because of surgery (for me) it took about a year to be comfy again on side.
    Good luck to both you and beth on your surgeries.
    keep us posted.
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