View Full Version : What's this talk of BRACES after surgery??

04-28-2010, 08:15 PM
Everyone needs to wear them?

What are they like and for how long?

What's it like to put them on? Does one need help? What can you wear over (or under) them? Are they hot? ETC...

:confused: :confused: :confused:

Thank you for any help.

04-28-2010, 09:06 PM
Not everyone has to wear braces. In fact my doctor doesn't normally have his patients wear braces at all. I requested one simply because I am a single mom of two rambunctious boys, and I'm also very independent and typically tend to overdo things. So I thought wearing a brace would prevent me from twisting too much etc. So a lot of doctors don't typically put you in a brace these days.

What are they like? It's kind of like a turtle shell :) Mine has three velcro straps on each side, on one side I keep them closed, and just open and close the other side to take the brace on and off. At first it felt kind of awkward, now it feels very easy. It feels like it helps to hold me up, whereas when I'm not wearing it I find it seems harder to hold my back up for some reason, maybe because my back muscles are still building back up from being torn at surgery. I wear a t-shirt underneath it, and yes it can get hot especially when you live in Florida - however I'm always cold maybe due to my meds, and I love the heat (which is why I live in Florida), so being hot is not a problem for me :). Hope that helped.

04-28-2010, 09:42 PM
Hope that helped

It sure did! Thanks so much!!

(Can't believe you're posting so much today. Hope that's a good sign...)

Take care,


04-29-2010, 05:10 AM
Amanda -- My doctor has told me I won't have a brace after surgery. Have no idea what determines who does and who doesn't.


04-29-2010, 03:26 PM
I didn't have a brace post-op.

04-29-2010, 03:32 PM
I didnt have one either. I asked the same question...to me, it almost seems with such a long fusion, one would be nessary....but, from what I have been told since, is that the 2 rods and screws installed, is like a permadent brace...keeping your spine/torso from twisting and turning. Perhaps different levels of fusion, surgeons opinions, etc, is what makes or breaks that deal?!


04-29-2010, 04:37 PM
no brace for me!

04-29-2010, 04:52 PM
I wore a brace with my first surgery and now with this one too. This brace I am wearing now fastens in the back with 3 velcro straps so I need help putting it on. I wear it 24/7 and Doc said I would have it for 4-6 months post-op. I had a complicated revision and he thought it would be better if I wore a brace. Not all patients wear a brace , and I think it depends on the surgeon, age of the patient, and type of surgery. I wear soft tops underneath mine. It does tend to hold heat in but I too seem to be cold all the time so I like the heat. My only complaint is that I wish the straps weren't in the back so I could be more independent.

04-29-2010, 05:20 PM
I did not have one either. My surgery was posterior only.

04-29-2010, 05:34 PM
No brace for me and I was anterior/posterior.

04-29-2010, 07:48 PM
None for me and mine was all posterior. Janet

04-29-2010, 08:07 PM
I had one. They are used as a safety measure.

Falls are not allowed, especially in the first few weeks.

On the subject of braces, I used to ski in a Copes brace 20 years ago, and the perspiration would make me freeze. It was cold while skiing, and hot in the summer. It fit like a glove and was very tight.

He might have gone to jail, but the man is a very experianced orthoist and made a great brace, for what its worth. I will give him that.

04-29-2010, 11:12 PM
I wore one for 6 months.

04-30-2010, 01:46 AM
Thank you all so much!
Mysteriously variable - just like the metal for the hardware and weight loss (and probably anything else I will think to ask)

Can you all also please tell me if they can be put on (easily or relatively so) by an adult living alone? Also did the surgeons who used them on you, use them on ALL their patients or was it a pt. determined decision (age, condition, length of fusion etc.)

Wondering how many docs have evolving methodologies of things like bracing, choice of metal, incisions sites or whether they always tailor it to the patient.

04-30-2010, 04:16 PM
My brace was custom made after my surgery. If you are living alone, you might mention that to your surgeon before hand and also to the brace guy so they can make it so that it fastens on the side so you can put it on yourself. Mine fastens in the back and is impossible for me to fasten without help. These are good questions to ask during office visit to your doc. Good Luck!

05-01-2010, 04:52 AM
:eek: :eek: :eek:

05-01-2010, 08:16 PM
Mine is like the one Lynette described. Each side has 3 velcro straps. You keep the one side closed all the time so you only have to do one side. Physical therapist showed me how to put it on standing against a wall so I could easily do it by myself. I am starting to wean off of mine although I don't think I'll be officially "released" from it until fusion is confirmed. I'm sure mine was recommended as extra support since not all of my hardware was completed. It almost seems like I'm having more stiffness since I'm not wearing it as much. Yes, it's hot and somewhat cumbersome, but I really didn't mind it all that much.