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Workouts after surgery? What can I do?

I'm 32 yrs old I just had a L4-L5 ALIF Fusion with a spacer and bone graph put in.  I'm advised to wear a back brace for 3 months. I am a very active person who use to workout 7 days a week, but I'm advised to only walk for 3 months and that is the only form of exercises until PT starts in 3 months.  Does anyone have suggestions from experience on what some light exercises I can do or what I can do??  I am going to go crazy not being able to do anything and my muscle turning to flab! But I certainly want to make sure I heal correctly so of course I'm not going to do anything crazy, just wanted to know suggestions of sitting exercises etc. of how you  all may have gotten through recovery and the time line of eventually lifting weights again, thanks in advance!


  • Pbiglane
    With all due respect..do what the doctor advises.
    Muscle memory is a wonderfull thing..as is putting pain behind you instead of hurting yourself inadvertantly with a worse condition.

    That said, their are excersize physiologists

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  • hvillshhvills Suzhou, ChinaPosts: 996
    edited 10/30/2016 - 5:54 AM

    Follow your doctors instructions...!! Walking is the best and only physical exercise you can/should do for the first 3 months... make it a 2 or 3 times a day activity for whatever your body will tolerate. Fusion is a BIG surgery and it takes time for your body to heal... be patient... you have the whole rest of your life ahead of you after these few months of down time. You DON'T want to mess up what your surgeon did...
    Harry - 65 year old male...
    PLIF L4-L5-S1 due to disc degeneration... May 23, 2013
    PLIF L5-S1 due to failed fusion and broken screw... Jan 19, 2015
    Microdiscectomy, decompression L3-L4 due to herniated disc... Jan 19, 2015
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  • Bruce EitmanBruce Eitman Akron, OH, USAPosts: 1,510

    I'm not going to tell you what to do because you already know and are prepared to ignore it anyway. Just a few questions.

    Which is more important, recovery or exercise?
    Any thoughts on what caused your disc problems?


    Read my story at Bruce - My Story
    ACDF C4-C5-C6-C7, and getting better every day
    It has been a process of healing, learning, exercising, and resting - and figuring out when to do which.

  • Bruce of course recovery is most important.  My Dr said I could do light dumb bells sitting down so I am nervous to do this but was looking for those types of forms of light sitting down exercises.

    The cause was degenerative disc disease which I do not know too much about, however the disc was herniating out a lot over the past 2 yrs.  no numbness was down my leg till after surgery.  It only hurt when I was sitting or laying on my back, which I drive an hour a day and work at a desk so it was constant pain

  • pbiglane15,

    Talk to your surgeon about physical therapy.
    I know there are different opinions, my doctor started me on a PT after 3 weeks post surgery.
    It helped me a lot to keep me on track with my recovery process and at the same time I was able to increase my activity level beyond just walking.
    I'm 16 weeks post op, still long way to full recovery, but I can do a lot now, of course all with my PT advice.
    Be patient and you will be able to do much more down the road than you think.
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