View Full Version : physical therapy

12-06-2004, 10:17 PM
nicole started physical therapy today she is almost 5 weeks post op. I was a wreck the whole time worrying that they would do something that would injure her. At one point the therapist had her on her stomach and i was freaking out, i didn't think she was allowed to go on her stomach. I did put a call into the dr after and they said it was okay. But i was really nervous the whole time. Has anyone else had physical therapy this early??

12-07-2004, 02:11 AM
Hi Jennifer

I have a question, does the physical therapy people, talk to Nicole's surgeon, to make sure that they are on the same "page", just curious.

Its Ok to worry, your a mum and its mum's job to worry.

Remember, you're (both you and your daughter) are allowed to ask questions/ question why about the exercises/stretching that they are getting her to do. Such as why their being done, what the aim is to stretch and is it ok.

And remind Nicole if that any exercises/ stretches hurt, or she's not comfortable with doing it, that she needs to speak up and say so.

But in the same breath, try not to ask lots of questions (might seem like I've just contradicted myself but I hope I make sense) to the stage were its making the therapy session not quite flow right. I always love to ask why my physiotherapist is getting me to do certain things (well I am curious) and sometimes I can see he's getting too frustrated at my question asking.

I don't really know whats the "right" time to start physical therapy, whether you can start "to early" or whether it makes no diffrence when it is started.

My surgeon was very "anti physiotherapy" we don't think because its bad or harmful. But he's had a lot of bad experiences with the wheelchair kids (which we think has kind of formulated his opinion on it) he works with and is very wary of physical therapy (physiotherapy) and doesn't perscribe/suggest it

However my parents (and I do love them dearly for this) went behind his back and asked around for a physio who'd had scoli experience at about 3 months post op. At first it was gentle stretching (trying to rebuild the muscles etc) and working on my walking but progressively increased to more stuff .

I think its the best thing (and investment :-) that my parents ever did for me and I can't imagine how'd I'd be moving today/what my flexibility would be like without it.

I don't really know whether youre allowed onto your stomach. I think a lot of people simply don't find it particularly comfortable after fusion surgery, and you'd just have to watch that they got her up correctly and carfefully (ie not bent her back)

Best wishes


12-07-2004, 09:45 AM
hi alison
thanks for replying and your input on the physical therapy. They did say they were going to put a call into my dr and i think i will feel better when they do that. I am just so nervous that anything she does might be wrong and something will happen. I feel like she is an egg and could crack. I can't imagine how i'll be when she goes back to school.

thanks again

12-07-2004, 11:38 AM
Hi Jennifer,

I KNOW how hard it is to allow your child to start being active. You want to protect them even more, because they have JUST HAD major surgery. However, I do know that for the most part, her body is very stable. The fusion is already beginning to be solid. With the rods holding the fusion material in place, she will be fine. My ortho told us (in Braydon's case) that "short of dropping him from a 3-story building" he would be fine. The body is amazingly sturdy.

I agree with Alison - if she begins therapy and starts hurting, then she should stop and talk to the therapist about it. Are you seeing a PT who is well-trained in helping post-op scoliosis patients? I hope so. Is Nicole still avoiding showers? I hope not - must be kinda itchy and yucky by now. Good luck with the therapy - I'm sure everything will be just fine. Keep us posted.

12-07-2004, 12:52 PM
hi carmell
thanks for writing. I do feel so much better after your post. With everyone saying you can't bend, you can't twist, you can't do this, etc.. or you will ruin the fusion it is scary. I know i have to relax more.
The dr. gave me a list of physical therapists that have worked on spinal fusion patients so that is why i chose them. Nicole is continuing to do well. Her shoulders still look a bit hunched to me i hope that goes away in time. Showering is going well also, although she still has not let the water hit directly on her back.

Karen Ocker
12-07-2004, 02:32 PM
I also had PT 5 weeks post op. My therapist contacted Dr. Boachie for clarifications and asking about possible additional exercises. His nurse practitioner had a good suggestion: if it doesn't feel right don't do it.

12-07-2004, 02:57 PM
thanks karen. I also called boachies office and she confirmed that nicole would need antibiotics 1 hr before going to the dentist for approx. 2-3 years

my daughter "nikki" is the one your replied to about trampolines on spine kids. Thanks for the advice to her on that.

12-07-2004, 03:21 PM
I saw that post about the trampolines, and I said, "oh my gosh, that poor mom!!!" Yikes!!!

Sounds like she's ready to roll, your Nicole; I love it!!


12-07-2004, 04:35 PM
Jennifer - I didn't realize it was your Nikki! I hope she wasn't offended by my comments. I know how hard it is to keep Braydon from wanting to jump on trampolines. And, it doesn't help that my 14yr old keeps begging for one. Makes saying "NO" that much harder. I hope she's doing well, I really do! Keep up the good work!

12-07-2004, 08:13 PM
that's so funny that you read that post and felt bad for the mom. I feel bad for me too LOL

no of course nicole wasn't offended! Thanks for telling her that it's not a good idea, better coming from someone else than me.

12-08-2004, 12:36 AM
Hi you guys,
Been aways with other issues. But I wanted to say that my PT has been giving my surgeon weekly reports on my care. He his always ask the dr. before starting any diffucult therapies. I have charted my ups and downs and boy does it go up and down..!!!I do feel sore after theapy..but I have managed very well.. I now walk 2 miles on the tred mill in 30 min. I lift 3 to 7 pounds arm weights and lift 7 lbs leg weights.. I notice that I stiffen up very quickly. When he puts me on my stomach to massage me , its hard getting up....In the beginning he was massaging my scar to help prevent scar tissue...It also help blood flow to the tissues...The shoulders and bladles were important...Tell him to have her lie on her back and gently stretch the shoulders down, that helped me stand straight and it worked...good luck..it takes time...

12-08-2004, 11:20 PM
thanks connie
did you get my private message?? Just checking to see if you got it about the shoulders.