View Full Version : Low back pain when sleeping?

03-13-2005, 08:50 PM
I'm 5 weeks post-op and have started experiencing low back pain while sleeping. The pain goes across my entire low back area. Did anyone else experience this? I try to lay on my side from time to time, but can only do so for about 20 mins and then the muscles surrounding my thorocotomy site flare up and I have to turn onto my back again....

03-13-2005, 09:07 PM
Hi Heidi...

You should put a pillow under your knees when you sleep on your back.

Do you have pain when you try sleeping on both sides? I couldn't sleep on my left side for awhile, but I was pretty comfortable on my right side (with a pillow between my knees).


03-13-2005, 11:12 PM

I also had the lower back pain (still get it every now and then). I used the pillow under my legs. I would position the pillow so that it was just under the bend in my knee with my thighs resting on the rest of it. I couldn't lay on my right side for months. I was able to lay on my left side for just a few minutes at a time. I had also found that if I got up and walked a few laps around the downstairs part of the house it would also help.

03-14-2005, 11:21 AM
Hi Heidi. I was told my the physical therapists at rehab to use pillows. To this day I am still using a pillow under my knees when I sleep on my back and then I put it between my knees when I sleep on my side. It takes the pressure off the lower back and is more comfortable.

03-14-2005, 11:28 AM
Hi all...I am using a pillow under my knees when on my back and between them when on my side. I can only sleep on my left side for now because laying on my right (thorocotomy site) is even more painful than laying on my left side. Maybe I need to use a bigger pillow???? I'll give that a try tonight and see what happens.

03-14-2005, 12:51 PM
Hi Heidi...

Is your bed ultra firm?


03-14-2005, 03:38 PM
I don't think it's ultrafirm, but it is a bit firm. Could that be the problem?

03-14-2005, 04:59 PM
Hi! I haven't had fusion but have a lot of lowback pain which often continues/gets worse when lying down. I think Linda has posted elsewhere about soft beds being better than very firm - I'm sure she'll clarify when she comes on here next (or you could search bed threads I think there was one not too long ago).

I just wanted to mention, Heidi, you can need a LOT of height under your knees before feeling a difference - I really mean a lot, when I was in physio and they used to raise my legs, my thighs were almost a right angle to the bed/floor. Usually now I use at least two if not three or four pillows to feel a benefit.

Hope it gets better soon! Laura

03-14-2005, 05:19 PM
Hi Heidi...

If you have a firm bed, I would definitely recommend that you try a foam mattress topper. A good one will allow your back to be in a more ergonomic position. Memory foam toppers are great unless you have a tendency to be too hot. (They retain heat.) If you want to try a non-memory foam topper, I found that the egg crate design wasn't as comfortable as the others. You can see all types of toppers on the QVC website (http://www.qvc.com) and on the Bed Bath and Beyond website (http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com).


03-16-2005, 07:00 PM
I am waiting to have surgery but my doctor told me about the select comfort. A combination air and swedish foam bed. Because it does not have any springs there are no pressure points and the select number part allows you to select the firmness that achieves the least pain. I went from needing pain meds all day long to needing only allieve once a day and I sleep. They are expensive but with a doctor's perscription you can take it off your taxes. Good luck. I also bought the special memory foam pillows. They were 90.00 each and don't look like much but it is incredible the results because they hold your spine in place. I rattled on sorry, this bed has been a life saver for me so far. Also, there is a web site with incredible products on relaxtheback.com. I am ordering some articles for my post op needs.

03-18-2005, 12:10 PM
I tried Laura's technique of more pillows and that seemed to do the trick. Apparently, I wasn't getting enough height under my knees and thighs before. Thanks to all of you for your replies!

Jacque's Mom
03-18-2005, 12:29 PM
I purchased the "Tempurpedic" mattress and it was money well spent! This bed relieves all my lower back/hip pain. With my other mattress, it would be so bad, that just turning was so painful. As any one with pain knows, not having the correct sleep just adds to the discomfort level. I have the bed almost two years and look forward to going to sleep. I purchased mine at "Bruce the Bed King", who had the cheapest price. Hope this helps.