What to Expect When Recovering From Spinal Surgery

4 Mar, 2022

Spine surgery is a treatment option typically recommended by doctors as a last resort after the patient has undergone all the less invasive options. Since spinal surgery poses a certain amount of risk and a significant amount of recovery time, it is usually only undertaken when nonoperative interventions cannot alleviate symptoms, or symptoms are severely affecting the patient’s quality of life. If you’re considering spinal surgery, you may be curious about the amount of time necessary following the surgery to get back to your normal life and what the recovery process involves. Read on to learn more about what you can expect when recovering from spine surgery. 

Spine Surgery Recovery Time

The recovery period for spine surgery varies depending on the individual case. Recovery time factors include the surgical approach employed, the severity of the condition, the type of surgery performed, the patient’s overall health, and other factors. For example, if you had a laminectomy, the recovery time could take anywhere between a few months and a few weeks. If you had spinal fusion performed along with the laminectomy, then you may have an even longer recovery ahead of you. Your orthopedic surgeon will speak with you regarding your recovery time and what it may be like during your consultation. 

What Recovering From Spinal Surgery Is Like

Just like with any other kind of major surgical procedure, you should expect a certain amount of pain following spine surgery. Your care team will give you analgesics and instructions to help manage your pain while you recover. You may also be given a brace by your care team to support your spine and keep it aligned, and also to lower your risk for injuring your spine while it heals. You will probably be encouraged to move around and walk (as long as it is within recommended guidelines) after the anesthesia wears off. There are certain movements and positions you will need to avoid, such as twisting movements, lifting, excessive bending, or sitting for extended periods until your doctor tells you it is safe. You may need to use an assisted device like a walker for a period. 

Before leaving the hospital, your care team will provide you with a detailed set of post-operative instructions to follow in order to minimize your risk for complications. You may require assistance driving home and with household chores, preparing meals, and other everyday tasks during the first couple days/weeks. You will probably be asked to go back for a follow-up appointment to check your incision and recovery progress, and they will likely recommend physical therapy to help rehabilitate a safe and successful recovery. 

Contact Us Today

Recovery after spinal surgery can be a long and involved process, but recovery time heavily varies and depends on the specific case. The Spine and Scoliosis Center is a top spinal clinic with locations in Orlando, Clermont, Davenport, and Winter Haven, FL. Call The Spine and Scoliosis Center to learn more and to schedule an appointment with a top spinal surgeon today!

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