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Golf after fusion????

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:19 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Just curious...anyone golf after having Lumbar fusion??? I am having fusion L5/S1 in August. I haven't been able to golf for the past 2yrs now. My mom lives on a golf course and I took the golf cart out and was just riding around. They are putting in several new holes, anyway..I wondered if I'll ever be able to golf again??

Any post fusion golfers out there??


  • My brother had multi level fusion 6 yrs ago and he was able to return to his after two years. He was 54 at the time. His only complaint was that it took alot to really have a complete swing.
    Good Luck. :)
  • Veronica,

    Yes you can play golf after fusion. I had a 2 level fusion L4-S1 in August 2007. I was back out on the driving range this past January. I have since played 2 rounds of golf. The first round was about 2 months ago and I had no adverse effects. The second round was the day before my hardware removal 3 weeks ago. I had a difficult time on the last 5 holes cause my legs were really tired. All in all, my results were much better than prior to my surgery last year. My game would completely fall apart on the back 9 cause I was just didn't have the stamina. I expect to be playing again in another couple of weeks once the muscles in my back have had a chance to heal.

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  • I played for several years after my first fusion, How ever I do not remember exactly how long after surgery I teed it up...

    so I'll say this surgery in Aug fully recovered by April-May so by this next summer as long as you do not have any other issues you will be able to play again.

    Just consult your doc....

  • I'm 5 months post fusion L4-S1 and called my Dr. today to see if I could start hitting some at the range and they informed me that I needed to wait at least 12 months post op. They said they would look at my xrays next month at my 6 month check up and go from there. Still no major twisting at this point so I can only do as they tell me.

  • Thanks for the info!! My doc did say I would be able to return once fused...just wondered if this was truly a possible reality...I can't imagine swinging a club at all right now. Its just one of the things that makes me anxious to get this surgery over with and on the mend so I can get back to the things I like doing!!
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  • ;) Hi all,
    I had two surgeries in 3 years, fusion at S-1 to L3 (3-24-05) and a discectomy at L4 on (10-4-07)because I had to learn the hard way. Don't give up hope. Although no one knows the daily pain and agrivation we endure they also don't undertand our need to compete. I have done everything to keep my life as normal as possible. For sure there are things I will never do again. At 48 I also have hopefuly a long way to go. I have read, asked, experimented and tried to re- learn the impossible game of golf. I play on a local par 3 course as much as six times a month to keep myself and my mind on an even wave length. You must understand that at times it hurts, but the old adage of "NO PAIN NO GAIN" kicks in. I was always competative by nature and golf was not one of my top priorities in sport. Now it has become an adiction. To score in the mid 90's on 18 is a tremendous experience. To be out with the guys is an unreal feeling. To compete in this game, which is crazy hard with out a bad back, is refreshing and satisfying. One thing to always remember is the fact that we have limitations, never do what you can't. But also never feel sorry for yourself. Listen, on bad days I chip to the putting green or putt till I can't anymore. To be able to play 18 is something I never trhought I would be able to do, ever!!! Although I will always be one to two shots behind the rest on some holes, I keep up and if its becomes a really bad hole, I just pick up my ball and move on. You see it could have been alot worse. Although I am in pain every day, I could have lost, feeling, nerves, muscle and maybe had to walk with a cane, ha maybe even worse. I know I put myself in danger with this game I can't give up, but I also know I lose alot more mentally if I do. SWING EASY - ENJOY LIFE.
  • The answer is Yes 5 months doc said go play, lost 100 yards on drive, but it is ok cause i get to hit the ball extra times, i still am pretty stiff not a pretty swing, make sure you strech out good first. A Bad Day of Golf is Better Than A Good Day of Work.
  • I am so glad Im not a golfer at this point but hey if its a sport you enjoy I hope you enjoy yourself...careful for those flying balls lol

    Christina :)
  • well done rocky,

    below is a link to an article re golf after lumbar fusion

  • I've had three fusions as the problems keep moving up one level beginning at age 52. I'm now fused L3-S1 (I also have seven lumbar vertebrae) and while I'm having some L3/4 issues, no surgery is planned. I played golf three months after my first surgery and PT and repeated the pattern after the two subsequent surgeries. No failures, just a bit less flexibility each time resulting in a little loss of distance after the second fusion. My handicap before the first surgery was 12; after the second surgery, I was able to lower it to 7 with playing 3,4, or 5 times per week, but the third has been coupled with less time to play and my game has suffered. The most critical element to a positive outcome after any orthopedic surgery (I also have bi-lateral TKR) is physical therapy. I have found that the therapist has to be unyielding in ensuring that one proceeds slowly but with somewhat exhausting exercises, stretches, and deep massaging. Working on one's own between sessions is a must because after the doctor has done his/her job and after the therapist instructs and leads one through a program, everything depends on the dedication of the patient. Period. One golf hint: shorten the swing, especially the backswing. The ball can go as far and there is less wear and tear on the spine
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