What to expect after back surgery

How long does pain last after back surgery?

After surgery, pain is no longer achy and arthritic but stems from wound healing, swelling and inflammation. You will experience some pain outside of the hospital. For most back surgeries, it will take 1-1.5 months to resume “normal” mobility and function. During this time, pain should be tolerable and controlled.

How long until you can walk after back surgery?

Walking is the best activity you can do for the first 6 weeks after surgery. You should start out slowly and work up to walking 30 minutes at least twice a day.

What should I do after back surgery?

Surgeons typically recommend keeping the skin around your incision clean and dry for at least 4 days after surgery. Avoid tub baths until the incision has healed and you are cleared by your surgeon. Pain in the area of the incision is expected immediately after surgery and should subside as healing progresses.

Is it normal to have leg pain after a back surgery?

Although spine surgery has become much more reliable in the last 20 years or so, some patients will still have leg pain after a lumbar decompression surgery for spinal stenosis or a disc herniation. Sometimes this is a temporary condition as the nerve root or roots take time to heal. This can take days to weeks.

Why does my back still hurt after surgery?

The formation of scar tissue near the nerve root (also called epidural fibrosis) is a common occurrence after back surgery—so common, in fact, it is so common that it often occurs for patients with successful surgical outcomes as well as for patients with continued or recurrent leg pain and back pain.

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How long does it take to recover from l4 l5 back surgery?

It will take about 4 to 6 weeks for you to reach your expected level of mobility and function (this will depend on the severity of your condition and symptoms before the operation). When you wake up after lumbar decompression surgery, your back may feel sore and you’ll probably be attached to 1 or more tubes.

Can I climb stairs after back surgery?

Patients are typically allowed to walk up and down stairs after spinal surgery, but this is usually done slowly and under supervision the first few times to make sure that the patient is safe. Older patients may have more difficulty with stairs after larger surgeries.

Is a recliner good after back surgery?

Recliners can help ease pressure on your lower back, and sitting on something cushioned, such as an inflatable donut pillow or hemorrhoid pillow, can make sitting more tolerable. If you’re having extensive surgery, you may want to consider renting an adjustable bed for the postoperative recovery period.

How can I speed up healing after surgery?

Diet – eating well for recovery.

  1. Reduce salt. …
  2. No Gatorade. …
  3. Increase protein. …
  4. Decrease Sugar. …
  5. Eat small amounts many times throughout the day. …
  6. Wine works as a diuretic, so consuming a glass of wine 2-3 weeks post-operatively may be helpful for post-surgical swelling. …
  7. Consume a quality probiotic. …
  8. Walk.

Do you lose weight after back surgery?

Do not attempt to lose weight following surgery.

The days, weeks and months after surgery are not only a time for your spine to heal—it’s a time when your entire body goes through the recovery process. The progression is generally slow, but a high-quality diet can help ensure a smoother and speedier healing process.

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How should I sleep after back surgery?

It is generally OK after back surgery to sleep in whatever position is most comfortable. Some prefer to sleep on one side or the other with a pillow between their knees and/or behind them to support the back. Here is another position that takes stress off the low back: Lay face up on the bed.

What exercise is best after back surgery?

Walking Exercise Program

Walking is one of the best exercises you can do after a lumbar laminectomy or discectomy surgery. 1 Why? Because walking helps to improve blood flow throughout your body. This helps to bring in oxygen and nutrients to your spinal muscles and tissues as they heal.

How long does it take for nerves to heal after back surgery?

Conclusion: In lumbar radiculopathy patients after surgical decompression, pain recovers fastest, in the first 6 weeks postoperatively, followed by paresthesia recovery that plateaus at 3 months postoperatively. Numbness recovers at a slower pace but continues until 1 year.

What helps leg pain after back surgery?

In the early postoperative period (3 to 12 months), medications such as Neurontin may help limit back pain or leg pain, and exercises can help free up the nerve. Beyond this time period, pain management techniques may help the patient cope with the back pain or leg pain.

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