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domkam
02-16-2010, 01:43 AM
Hi all,
I'm one week out from my surgery. i was just wondering...How careful do I have to be in regards to the rods. I realize I shouldn't be doing "heavy lifting" or any activity too aggessive. How long before I can be normal with activity ie: lifting, bending, driving etc...I'm concerned that too much activity may inhibit my fusion or cause damage to the rods?
Thanks

JenniferG
02-16-2010, 02:57 AM
It varies a lot between patients, from my reading, as to what you can do and when. The general rule is no bending, lifting, or twisting.

Have you read David Wolpert's "Scoliosis Surgery" book? It is incredibly informative and should be required reading for all scoli patients, in my opinion. It answers all these questions and as they say, "knowledge is power!"

I know it's close to your surgery date, but if you could get a copy from your library and read it, I think it might help.

My doctor was very laid back about instructions to me, in fact he didn't give me any instructions whatsoever, apart from "walk, walk, walk!"

I'm sure others will come along soon and tell you what their surgeon's advice was.

Pooka1
02-16-2010, 06:47 AM
Per our surgeon, for kids at least, 95% of them require no physical restrictions (beyond those they impose on themselves due to pain) in the post surgical period and they will still fuse successfully. That is because the instrumentation is so good. That said, he does restrict activity for 8 months because he doesn't know ahead of time who the 5% will be who need to be restricted.

From JenniferG's answer, it seems like not restricting activity is also the case with at least some adults.

I agree with JenniferG that walking is key to getting back in the game seeing my two kids go through this.

Snoopy
02-16-2010, 06:53 AM
Like Jennifer said, evey patient's restrictions are different. My daughter was 13 y.o. at the time of her surgery and a lot of her restrictions were in place for a full year whereas a lot of teens have all their restrictions lifted long before that. I think the reason for Jamie was restricted for so long was due to the fact she doesn't have any screws in her back (that's my guess).

Almost everyone, regardless of age, is restricted on lifting, bending and twisting for up to the first few months post-op. Trust your body and it will tell you if you're doing too much. And ask your surgeon at your first post-op visit what you can/cannot do. Be very specific with your questions especially if there's something you are worried about.

Good luck.

Mary Lou

rainbow2010
02-16-2010, 07:52 AM
You cannot drive as long as you are on any pain medicine (if you are stopped, it is a DUI). My daughter started back dancing after 3 months. I started bowling after 4 months while still in a body cast. Do not consider your "restrictions" as restrictions, consider it as part of a new life style. There are good reasons for them. Your spine will not bend or absorb shock like a non-fused spine. This places a lot of wear and tear on the discs above and below your fusion. I found out the hard way. I tried to do everything I did before surgery and now 30 years later I am paying for it. Bumps and jolts and heavy lifting are the worst. Avoid amusment park rides also. All that being said, there are a lot of things you can do in moderation. Swimming is the best thing to strengthen your back postop. You can start doing things when your doctor says you can. He knows how you are healing and when you will be ready.

txmarinemom
02-16-2010, 04:12 PM
#1 - Kids and adults are restricted somewhat differently. Specifically, it seems like surgeons keep tighter restrictions on kids/teens as a group.

#2 - Adults (within their own group) can have a LARGE variance in restrictions - and timetable for lifting of same. It varies by surgeon, by procedure, and by each individual patient.

I wasn't all that restricted after my posterior only fusion (T4-L1) ... as you can tell by my post at 7-8 weeks out from surgery (http://scoliosis.org/forum/showthread.php?p=58097).

It was funny to go back and pull this: Some restriction I thought were lifted at 4 months were actually lifted at < 2 months.

At any rate, listen to your surgeon ... :)

Regards,
Pam

LindaRacine
02-16-2010, 09:58 PM
Hi all,
I'm one week out from my surgery. i was just wondering...How careful do I have to be in regards to the rods. I realize I shouldn't be doing "heavy lifting" or any activity too aggessive. How long before I can be normal with activity ie: lifting, bending, driving etc...I'm concerned that too much activity may inhibit my fusion or cause damage to the rods?
Thanks
As careful as your surgeon's office tells you to be! :)