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Daily activities: When did you begin.....After ACDF update

cgmccgm Posts: 290
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:48 AM in Recovering from Surgery
When did you start doing normal everyday activities after surgery. Light housework up to Cleaning toilets/showers that requires bending at the waist? Also, when did you begin to start turning your head to get range of motion going? I go back tomorrow for my first postop appt and im sure i'll be given new instructions. But I was just curious to what other folks were instructed to do or not do at one month. TIA!!!


  • Of course, you need to talk to your doctor about all this as he's the only one that can give you the definitive timeframe for any activities.

    For me, after my 3-lvl ACDF, I was turning my head just a little after one month (I was in a hard collar for one month, then soft collar for three) and wasn't cleared for any normal duties, including turning my head fully, until three months out. Even then, lifting still had to be restricted as that's very difficult on your spine, whether cervical or lumbar.

    I'm thinking that it's possible that even when your restrictions are lifted completely, you still might find it difficult to do heavy scrubbing, vacuuming and heavy housework like that. It takes a while for the muscles to get their strength back and you're fusion will continue working until it's done, even up to a year later.

    You're still pretty early out from cervical surgery, so don't push it and risk making things worse. So do follow your doctor's restrictions.

    Take care and let us know what your doc says at your post-op visit.

  • Well I did vacume today....just a couple areas. I just can't stand it. Thanks Cathie, I am glad my Husband will be with me at the postop appt. I don't think he quite "gets it" that I'm not supposed to do housework. Housework, that he's not had to worry about. I'm guilty of some half/assed no no's.

    Thanks for your response.
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  • Back from my one month followup appt with NS. Good news is that he does see bone growth as far as fusion. Was happy with where I am in this department. He's released me to do normal daily activities. Cleaning, bending. Said that the hardware will keep everything in tact. I know me and I'll still be cautious.

    Bad news: My left arm weakness was concerning to him. Said he's never had a patient have the arm weakness worse after surgery (scratching his head)that i'm experiencing. Weakness without numbness in extremities . He told me to please keep my chin up, that it may take a long time to get my strength back but he felt in time I would (but "there is a chance that you might not get full range of motion back with my left arm.") So, I'm going to start using my little 2 lb weight and start working the muscles. He wont start my physical therapy for this until 3 months post op, but wants me to make strides at home doing weights and stretching the muscles.

    I went and had a massage today, just my upper back for 30 minutes. She worked my muscles good on my left side. Clearly they are drawn up, atrophy. Hurt so good and I'll probably try to do this at least once a week.

    Vertigo: Stumped the NS as well. Said I need to go to an Ear Nose and Throat if it doesn't get better in the next couple weeks.
  • He is not sending you to physical therapy for the arm weakness?
  • I told the NS that I would begin lifting light weights and working my arm (i've been stretching it and using it as much as possible) in order to hopefully get strength back in my arm. He said that if there is no improvement in one month he will start me on PT.He didnt want me to start any PT with my neck until 3 months...and that is only should I need it. They don't normally prescribe pt for Cervical neck surgery...so i've been told.

    Anyhoo... I'm pretty savvy in the rehab department..but will definitely go to pt if I am not seeing improvement on my own.

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