Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!


Quick Start Forum Video Tutorial

Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

The main site has all the formal medical articles and videos for you to research on.

Did you do this at PT?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,321
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:25 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Just curious with those of you with a 2 or 3 level fusion...did PT have you do cat stretches...the ones where you are on your all fours, arch your back up like a cat and then slump in down.....they did after my L5S1 but I haven't done PT with the L4L5, I have just been doing what I did last year for the first fusion except for this particular stretch~seems like it would pull on that L4 area?? Doc said no restrictions, but I'm still not sure....wondering what your PT's are doing.


  • I had a three-level fusion, and I did nothing like you describe during PT. As matter of fact, when my surgeon was discharging me (at five months) we talked about yoga, in general, and he said I should not do anything like a cat back. Otherwise I have very little restrictions (maybe no twisting, and bending properly).

  • thanks so much~that's what I was thinking. You've been discharged before one year? You have done fabulous!!
  • advertisement
  • Hi Carol, I was doing exercises on all 4 paws there I had to balance, raising on arm at a ime slowly and holding it there then 1 leg and the same. As I progressed I then had to lift one arm AND one leg on the opposing sides.
    All the time while doing this I had to use my pelvic and core muscles to keep my back straingt. If I went into a slump or an arch thr PT would tell me straight away to correct it.
    Mind you I curl up in bed, which arches the back but there is no pressure on the pelvis so that probably makes a difference.

    Blessings Sara O:)

  • I had to do that when I first started PT before they knew I had an issue with my disc. When I told them it was buggin the heck out of my back they ignored me. Can't imagine that it would feel very good after a surgery.
  • Yes Sara, the exercise you described is the one I am working my way up to. Currently I am tucking my tummy while lying on my back and doing marching, doing side lying leg lifts and ofcourse the stretches. Next on my list is the ball squats and then the one you described...that helped a ton last time with low back stability and control. I didn't think those cat arches would be wise. It use to feel good to stretch my back that way but I can't imagine it now. Is the knee slightly raised to the chest the way you all are nice and easily stretching the low back?
  • advertisement
  • the knee to chest gives a nice stretch but dont overdo it. You will be able to move more as you go.
    I am finding it really hard to believe that you are just doing these now. These are the exercises I was given pretty much from week 1 :jawdrop:
    Even the knee to chest I was doing a few days after surgery as it is supposed to help reduce scaring.
    Your Dr must be super conservative.
    I can only imagine it must be a lot harder for you if you have been wearing the brace as all those muscles have gone to :sick: and now need to be worked.

    Keep it going :*
    Sara O:)
  • So, you lay down in bed and bring one knee and at time up to your chest? Do you hold it for a count of 5 or something, and then bring the other one up. Do you start with both knees bent or both legs out flat?

    Another question, is it alright to lay on your side and get in the fetal position if you haven't fused yet?

    I haven't been to PT and my back really feels like it needs to be stretched out some...I really think I would feel better.
  • Hi Carol, a similar exercise, that would have benefit but I believe less potential for strain is just to do pelvic tilts and bridges while laying on your back with knees bent. Kinda like that cat landed on his back :))( ! I had L4-5 fusion in August and these were some of my first exercises. I hold them for five seconds each. I believe it is all a slow progression. I know I have no restrictions now either, but must use common sense. Good-luck, >:D< Sue
  • I am sorry you aren't having PT yet as it really makes a difference.

    When you do this exercise yes you are lying on your back and keep one leg bent at the knee while gently bringing the other uo to your chest.
    As I progressed the PT was having me bring both legs up together and holding but this took a while.
    As Cali-Sue said the inverted cat stretch :))( is probably more gentle, so lie on bed with both knees bent and slowly raise your bottom off the bed and hold it there for 5-10 seconds using your core muscles then still using your core muscles SLOWLY lower your bottom down again.
    You dont need to lift it far to feel it working.

    Sara O:)
  • Thanks! I think I remember doing these in PT before surgery, but my rememberer is broken!
Sign In or Register to comment.