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Physical Therapy after ACDF



  • Hey everyone, so sorry I don't really know the different protocols after surgery for fusion versus replacement. I had replacement surgery so PT was the goal for me. Sorry, D,if I may have confused some people; Again, I don't know the different protocols. #o
  • I started Pt 4 weeks post op ACDF. I thought my treatment was very aggressive and I paid dearly for it with severe pain hours after the PT. We had to pt PT on hold after 3 sessions because the spasms and pain were so bad.
    I hope to restart again in 2 weeks. I am not a wimp but the therapy pain was worse than the preop pain I had. I think I started too early.
    Good Luck,Bethy
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  • Four weeks does sound early grandmesamom, my NS didn't send me until almost 10 weeks after surgery.

  • Have to say that PT has been very good for me. After my second surgery, I started PT in June, and was going up until this week. They started rather easy, just some stretching and arm bike, then slowly worked me into weights. My fusion is stable, my OS said PT would be a good thing, and it has done wonders for me. After my first ACDF it was 6 weeks before PT, and after the second ACDF with the posterior laminectomy it was 12 weeks after the surgery. Good luck to all.

  • I have been doing PT for months now, I have the greatest PT, he is the only one who could give me answers as to why my upper back was in so much pain. In my situation, the path of the nerves affected in my neck to my arms were causing my muscles to spasm and tighten, so bad that they pulled some ribs out of place, so he not only got my ribs back (took 2 months) but is continueing with deep tissue massage, painful but relieving, and I am hoping by the time I have surgery it will improve, BUT he did tell me my posture was what he called turtle shell protective mode and gave me stretches to get my shoulders back, chest out, he said if I did not correct it, the surgery would not help.
    Hope this helps and I am always open to questions, just message me!
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  • I was started on PT at 4 weeks post op for acdf one level, but was yanked out of it after 4 sessions because they were being too aggressive and my pain was unbearable. My NS said she wished I had called her and told her how much pain I was in after the first PT visit, because PT is NOT supposed to hurt this early in recovery. She said the orders were to do massages for my extremely tight neck/upper back muscles, then GRADUALLY work up to stretches. She was VERY unhappy, to say the least, to hear of what was being done to me so early. She even called the PT office (it's part of the same hospital she works out of) and gave them hell for it. So, my advice is what she said to me: Listen to your body. If your neck can tolerate what's being done, then keep going. But, if it hurts, it's NOT right, and NOT helping you.
  • I've been going through the PT posts and man this is wild. I'm going to a 3 level ACDF and was given the order of "No bending or rotation of my neck nor forward or backward tilting for six weeks".

    I'm told not to lift for the first 3 weeks and just walk walk walk! I love to exercise so I hope I'm given the green light but sounds like some of you were entered into the races!

    At my post op they say I can discuss doing more strenuous activities.

    I've used PTs for years due to my sport activities and my back issues. Some are great and some need to go back to school in my opinion. I've been lucky because most of mine have been great but after reading these posts I'm going to be careful that's for sure. If they have me getting crazy I'm going to call my doctor!

    Thank you for sharing all that you've been doing. It really helps!
  • RangerRRanger on da rangePosts: 1,033
    PT was never ordered for me after my discectomy, corpectomy, 360 degree
    ACDF. Couldn't tell you if it would matter either way.
  • I have been going to PT for about the last month. Doing the bands, ultrasound, heat, and different excersises. Also doing traction again (fused at 5/6/6/7) for c4/5 that has gone bad. I cant really tell if its working or not but yesterday the traction was ruff and today really stiff.
  • Well after yesterdays PT, I had to quit. The traction was making me hurt alot worse. The therapist and myself decided that it wasent helping any after 12 post op visits. Some people it helps, but not me post op.
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