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It's Dapopo, lookin for some advice

dapopo315ddapopo315 Posts: 40
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:38 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
It's Dapopo back with more, just to clear thing up . . . my surgery was done in good ol USA. With everything that happened all I do is shake my head & laugh.

Getting into my room was another interesting event . . we once again had to grab my cathader bag off the floor b4 it was run over by the guy pushin my "Rolly Recliner" chair . . . my mom had to go find an IV stand that was on wheels so I could ROLL it in to use the rest room instead of CARRYING the stationary one they had for me to use . . . once in my bed MY FRIEND had to teach the on duty nurse the correct way to operate the bed controls (after she admitted that she'd never worked with them before) . 

My catheter was removed within 1 hour of me being there. So of course I just HAD to go to the restroom. I called the nurse for help. Silly me, she had no idea how to do the "LOG-ROLL" or how to get me out of bed. I "NICELY" asked her to leave my room, my parents & friend helped me the rest of the time I was there. When the nurse came to take my vitals she took my blood pressure from the arm that had my IV in my hand. That wound up blowing my IV rite out of the vein. 

I left the rehab place early Saturday morning because I couldn't take any more of the "outstanding nurses" working with me.  :)

The Dr sent me home with some meds: 
     Oxycontin 20mg take twice daily
     Flexeril     10mg take 3 times a day
     Percocet.   10mg/325mg 1-2 every 4 hours

Now that I'm home I've been hurting quite a bit. I can't seem to get comfortable unless I'm lying down on my 4inch memory foam mattress. I've been taking short walks around the house & sometimes sit in my recliner but it's hard to get comfortable.

 Today is day 12 from my Open L4-5 TLIF w/instramentation. I'm still hurting ALOT!  When I left the rehabilatation didn't give me any information about how long it should be before I start feeling better in any way. I know the surgery I had was a MAJOR SURGERY, I'm just kinda wonder in what other people have encountered. How long should I stay on the pain meds? The only limitations the Dr gave me was not to lift more than 10-15lbs until the 5th month. He also has me walking as much as possible. No bending, twisting, squating ect.

Since I've been home I've been hurting & it seems to be kinda different each day. All along my back pain has been on the left down by L4-5, the last couple days it's been hurting on the right side. Feels like something is poking me, it's hard to explain.

I know everone recovers differently but maybe it would put my mind at ease a little if I heard about how some others are doing.

Thank You My Fellow Spineys!!!              


  • How could you possibly think you would feel better so soon after the awesome treatment you received? Glad you can laugh. OMG! I know I shouldn't say this, but your experience sounds like a slapstick comedy although I know it wasn't funny at the time. I had fabulous care and my pain was pretty high for the first few weeks. Can't imagine how yours is after all you went through. I think you get some sort of prize.

    It took several weeks for me to feel like I was making significant progress after fusion. You probably won't notice the little improvements everyday because you'll still feel pretty funky (that's a medical term you know) for a while longer. It took me about a month to really be able to sleep in my bed semi-comfortably and to start feeling human again. I had lots of weird changes in pain location for the first 2.5 months but the intensity decreased pretty steadily. At almost 3.5 months I'm pretty good and deal with back pain from the surgery when I spend too much time sitting or standing. I have cut way back on meds and basically only take them when I overdo it. (I was only given vicodin to begin with.) Everyone is different with their meds and their pain levels so only you will really be able to determine that. My doctor said to use them when I need them but to taper off as time goes by. Some mornings I am stiffer and sorer (is that a word?) than others but I feel so much better and you will too. I started PT at 8 weeks and walk religiously. Keep your chin up, this too shall pass, but don't pass on the walking and resting and eating right. Don't forget to listen to your body and your doctor's orders. Hang in there.
  • Hi Dapopo,

    What an experience! You did the right thing leaving rehab earlier IMO. My TLIF was minimally invasive, so less trauma than your open procedure, I found at about 2 weeks out was when I started to feel better. Most of the pain I had at that point was incision soreness/tenderness. I'd try ice (10-15 mins on) or moist heat type heating pad - whatever works better for you - sometimes I needed ice, sometimes heat. Keep moving at whatever pace you're comfortable with, don't overdo, take rests as often as you need to. Recovery and pain is something that varies greatly from person to person. Don't worry about the pain med use, the better your pain is controlled, the less stress on your body and the better the recovery. Keep your positive attitude, it's critical to recovery as well.

    Take good care, keep us posted on how you're doing
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