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Help - Good Posture after ACDF Surgery

painfree at lastppainfree at last Posts: 239
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:51 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hello all - I had a 2 level ACDF surgery (C5-C7) with hardware and donor bone on December 6th. I go for my 3 month follow-up xray and appt with NS on March 11th - hoping for signs of fusion and to get released to return to work. I went to PT for 8 weeks (3x per week) which was very helpful in just regaining strength but also in gaining tips for future care of my neck. I was advised by my fabulous PT guy that good posture is the most important aspect going forward! He said that poor posture puts pressure on the cervical disks and now after ACDF surgery there is increased pressure on the above and below disks so good posture is so much more important going forward. I can easily put note reminders on my computer but what I find so hard is when you are up and about standing and doing things I am not conscious of my posture until after I do something and have pain and realize maybe my posture was not so great. Does anyone out there have any magic insight on how to be conscious of good posture .. it should be easy especially after going thru this surgery but I have found it is not. Whether playing or doing things with my kids, getting dinner ready or out in a social environment standing and talking to people or at work - I find it is difficult to keep posture in the forefront of your mind so I thought I would put a post out there to talk about it and see if anyone else has any great tips on how to keep it conscious all the time... Thanks!


  • Hi Mary. I am in the same predicament in that I need to work on posture. I am a full-time student and spend hours in front of the computer and read textbooks with my head tilted down. Ever since I found out about my disc problem, I bought a book stand to avoid bending my head down to read. The theory behind PT is to strengthen the muscles in your upper back and the head will supposedly fall into the right position (I'm not convinced this is enough). When I used to work on the computer, I had a head forward position that I've also tried to correct. My chiropractor showed me what the proper position for the head should be and I will tell you that no one has the proper head position or else everyone will have a double chin! A friend of mine told me about the Alexander Technique: exercises to prevent misuse of the spine. I'm only 3 weeks post-op, so I plan on using these exercises when I've been cleared for PT.
    2011 ACDF C5-6 for Spondylosis with Myleopathy
    2012 L4-5 herniated disc and hernated disc at C4/5 2013 Taking Amitriptyline for headaches
  • I'll have to look into the Alexander Technique - never heard of it! Take Care! I agree - no one has to proper posture!
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  • Cervical, Lumbar, whatever. Posture is important for everyone. Sitting in front of a computer all day easily leads to bad posture. You just get lazy and start slumping.

    The biggest keys I have learned is core strength. Do exercises to build your core and use that strength. It should be muscle strength holding you up, not your bones and discs.

    There are so many techniques out there it gets confusing as to which is best. Your PT should at least have helped with this. If you want to try something specific you might want to throw it by your surgeon. Some will comment and others just pass it off on the PT to answer.

    I found an exercise routine that mixes plyometrics, yoga, pilates into something very useful. Makes no difference what back, neck, hip, leg issues you have. You can use it to work around all of it and help with your posture.
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