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meloxicam vs. lumbar fusion

I had a L4/L5 fusion 5 weeks ago, and was told I could start my daily use of meloxicam 30 days post op. I've since been hearing that meloxicam can hinder the fusion of the vertebrae. Has anybody heard this, or know of a clinical study that proves this is an issue? I am feeling very good now, and I'm 95% pain free. Still having a few issues, but hopefully, time will take care of those. I'm just concerned about the fusion healing properly so I can get back to work.



  • i think i was told no NSAIDs for 2 months post lumbar fusion, but when push came to shove, doc had me wait another month. for the cervical, i think i only had to wait 2 months. even after a laminectomy, i think it was 6 weeks without NSAIDs.
    Microdisectomy / hemi-laminectomy 6/2010 and revision 10/2010
    Cervical fusion C4-5 and C5-6 9/2011
    Lumbar Fusion L5-S1 6/2012
  • I was told no NSAIDS for at least 6 months, and then my fusion still failed, the first and second time. Before taking it, I would contact my surgeon and ask him. Some doctors allow them, others not, so you really need to contact their office and ask the surgeon, not the office desk staff....
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  • Sandi... I will assume when the fusion failed, you had to have it re-done? Did you know it had failed? Could you feel it, or was it discovered in testing? I've really tried to be careful, and I'm feeling pretty good. In the past couple days, my walking has gotten much easier. Feeling good, but always have that fear of a problem.
  • Yes, I suspected it hadn't fused, and of course, the xrays and CT scan post surgery, showed a failed fusion, and I had a revision surgery ( more of a salvage op for many reasons, including two screws that had backed out of the vertebre), and more problems from the first surgery, but the revision was done the following year, some 17 months from my first surgery.
    I'm glad that you are feeling better and the pain is down some, Did you speak to your doctor regarding the meloxicam?
  • MarkWVMMarkWV Posts: 18
    edited 08/24/2013 - 2:07 AM
    Thanks Sandi, No, I haven't talked to my doctor yet. I have an appointment to see him on Thursday (6 weeks post op), for my first follow up. I started taking the Meloxicam after 30 days,, and then read an article on it, so I made the decision to stop taking it. I'm taking Tylenol every 4-6 hours instead. This past week I have shown more progress than I had expected, and am now virtually pain free. I had been having trouble walking more than 15 minutes at a time, and yesterday was able to walk a few times at 35 minutes, and once at almost an hour on concrete with only a slight discomfort. The fusion is my biggest fear at the moment. I work construction, and my work isn't light duty. I hope to be back to work building houses in a couple months. I hope my plans aren't out of reach. My surgeon led me to believe that in 3 months or so, I would be doing almost everything I had been doing prior to surgery. I built my house 5 weeks post op of my C6/C7 fusion with no problems. Patience is not one of my better traits.
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  • I am really happy to read that the pain has taken a step way down!! That is awesome news. The hardest part post op, is the increased pain , and then the worry about whether this new level of pain is going to stick around. It usually doesn't, but the fear is there. Great job on being able to walk for a much longer period of time and the lessening of pain while doing so. Just be careful not to overdo, and push too hard.
    We all get impatient, even though we know ahead of time that there is a significant time frame where we will be unable to do the things that we once did, and then the reality of how slowly time can pass hits, and we want it all fixed yesterday.
    It's okay to push a bit, but do be careful and stick to the post op care that the surgeon gave you,,,,,,,soon you will be back to doing all of the things that you love.
  • I had a fusion in April; my neurosurgeon and pain doctor recommended no NSAIDs for 12 weeks. I've been using Meloxicam again for the past month and it sure works better than Tylenol!
    Lumbar laminectomy L-4/L-5, 2006
    XLIF with posterior pedicle screws L-4/L-5, 4-23-2013
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