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Marina63
12-02-2011, 09:17 AM
Hello Everyone!

I just wanted to share my positive recovery. I am about a week shy of being five months post-op. My recovery was plodding along, everything going well but I reached a turning point once I started physical therapy about six weeks ago. My surgeon told me I didn't need PT but after reading and listening to tons of advice and experiences, I was completely confused about what I should and shouldn't be doing. At my 3 month follow up appt, I asked my doctor to give me an order for PT. Based on the recommendation of a friend, I found an amazing PT place here in Atlanta that focuses on spines. My therapist has not only given me great guidance in returning to my previous workout routines and fitness levels, I have also gained a lot of mobilitiy. I am also more confident in what I can do. I was holding myself back and didn't realize I could do so much more.

Of course the key thing to remember is that everyone's situation is different and everyone heals and recovers at a different pace. This forum is wonderful but I must admit I am glad I didn't read it before my surgery. I would have been scared to death and probably would have cancelled my surgery. I did not experience the horredous pain and discomfort others did. I believe it is critical to post these issues on this forum in order to get some feedback from others in terms of what is normal and what isn't. I have found it invaluable, post surgery.

My point in posting this is that there are indeed many of us with relatively unexciting recoveries and I think it's important to post those as well. The natural tendency is to not post if everything is going well.

I'm here to say, everything is going well : )

walkingmom
12-02-2011, 09:42 AM
That is great to hear how much you have benefited from PT. At my 7 mos post-op visit, I was given the green light to start some light weight machines to help strengthen my back muscles. So with my PT instructions and copy of my xray in hand, I am looking forward to getting started with my fitness trainer at the gym next week. Hope you continue well with your recovery!
Donna

golfnut
12-02-2011, 06:06 PM
Congratulations on your progress! I also think it's important that the smooth recoveries are posted.

lray
12-02-2011, 06:13 PM
Great news Marina. It's nice to read positive outcomes from this surgery, especially so soon!

progress
12-03-2011, 02:32 AM
Great you sound active now. Can I ask what stretches you are doing?
And was any of your own bone used for the grafting?
I get quite sore when I've been active, but it seems just soft tissue pain. Do you get sore when you've been bending? I think I have upped my activity levels because my energy is back but my muscels aren't quite ready for it'.
Kelly

Marina63
12-03-2011, 05:49 AM
Hi Kelly!
I don't have any negative effects from exercising. I walk four miles 3 days a week at a 14.5 minute mile, I spin three times a week for 30-45 minutes, I use the stair climber at the gym (thing that looks like a mini escalator) for 30-45 minutes three times a week and lift weights 3 times a week. At about three months post op I tried bending a few times and paid dearly for it later. My back ached and I had a lot of tingling and burning all along my spine/fusion. But now, nothing. I bend, lift (with good form) and I feel fine. Can't so much twisting yet and I'm not sure how much I will be able to in the future. The only pain I've had recently is from driving 17 hours in three days. By the third day, my back was clearly telling me it had enough : )

For stretching I do pelvic tilts, child's pose (never thought I could do that!!), modified cat stretch (on all fours...used to round my back but now just lift the spine to the ceiling, hold and release...another one I didn't think I could do). Then just some leg stretches for runners. I don't run but the stretches are great. I can also do a plank which is great for building the core. Core muscle strength is key now.

If you haven't done so already, I cannot stress how much going to physical therapy has helped me. It's best to have a professional assess your situation and show you how to do exercises and stretches properly.

My surgeon used that new synthetic bone stuff. I don't know what it's called. Not my bone.

Good luck!

ripley
12-03-2011, 02:09 PM
Thank you for your encouraging post! I just saw my surgeon and scheduled the surgery yesterday. I've been reading through posts and started to doubt my decision and became scared. It was very comforting to read of your experience. Everyone is different I guess. Glad you are doing so well!