View Full Version : PT in rehab

04-02-2007, 06:29 AM
I know a lot of middle-aged/older peopole with A/P fusions go to rehab after surgery. I know it's recommended. My question is: what kind of physical therapy do you get in rehab? It seems that most surgeons don't let patients have actual physical therapy til 3 or more months after surgery, but aren't you getting it in rehab? Or are you just in rehab to get your meds stable and learn to get in and out of bed, etc.?

Boachie's scheduling nurse hesitated when I mentioned rehab to her. She said I'm on the "young" side (I'll be 52 next month!! ) for rehab and would have to demonstrate a real need for it after my surgery.


04-02-2007, 09:07 AM
I went to rehab following my surgery. In the beginning most of the excercises were while I was lying down and wearing the brace. They did have me climb stairs as well. I did only what I was comfortable with. I also had occupational therapy and learned how to dress and undress and get in and out of a car, load laundry, put things away in a kitchen, etc. I also asked questions, like how would I reach something from a lower kitchen cabinet, and learned the proper ways to move around. They also taught me how to get up from the floor. I found it to be very helpful because when I got home, I was comfortable being alone during the day and knew how to get around the house.
I did not start real physical therapy until about two-three months after the surgery. And I always had my brace on while doing the exercises.

04-02-2007, 09:50 AM
Hi Chris,
I was in rehab for 10 days after surgery. My surgery was probably more extensive/complicated than yours will be but a big part of my "exercises" was simply walking- I did not expect that but I had to start with a walker- then a cane-then by the time I got out I did not need any aid. They had me do simple exercises while laying down and also showed me the proper way to get out of a chair, etc. Do you know yet which rehab you will go to?

04-02-2007, 10:00 AM
Cathie, I'm hoping to go to an excellent rehab near my home (Bryn Mawr Rehab) so my family can visit me. I don't want to stay in NYC longer than I absolutely have to....but I want to be in halfway decent shape before I go home.

Karen Ocker
04-02-2007, 04:59 PM
I had to get used to being taller!!! Also, once the curves were reduced my center of gravity seemed to change. Rehab will help you protect your back while you heal; this will keep you more comfortable

04-02-2007, 08:14 PM

I haven't gone to rehab. Alot also depends on how well you are moving around in the hospital. Once I was able to start walking my family gently nudged me into walking like every hour for a little bit. At first I had the walker and one of the PT guys had this big strong strap wrapped around me helping me to stay upright. After that for a few times, I only needed the walker. I ended up using the walker for almost 4 months. After my 2nd surgery I got up and starting walking whenever I could. For this next surgery Dr. LaGrone said maybe some time in rehab. I have been talking with some of his other patients and they were telling me if you do to good in the hospital you won't go to rehab. They were telling me not to walk to much until I'm in rehab. I don't think I want to go to rehab. I would rather get out of the hospital and spend a few days in the Residence Inn Hotel before we come home. After my A/P surgery all I was allowed to do the first 6 months was walk. At 6 months I started going to PT and I'm still there today on and off.

Karen Ocker
04-03-2007, 10:01 AM
I was surprised Theresa, about needing a walker for 4 months. In rehab I was gradually weaned from walker to cane. I only used the walker maybe 2 weeks at home to go out, then at night to go to the bathroom at home-or to go to church 1x, then a cane for 1 weeks. That is the beauty of professional rehab.
They were also much better at pain relief than the hospital until I went to my own pain doc. The doctors are right there; there is no dealing with the primary care doc who hasn't a clue about post revision issues, no running to the pharmacy to get pain meds-that comes later. I had developed a small clot in one leg-in hospital and needed coumadin for a few weeks so in rehab my blood was tested every day.

I found, although my dear husband was dedicated to help me, he did not have the knowledge that professional have. I spent 2 weeks in rehab and was more confident coming home.

04-03-2007, 12:12 PM
I'm really confused on rehab. I asked Dr. Boachie about it, but my husband and I heard two different things. I got the impression that I would automatically be sent to rehab, but I couldn't remember when. Is it after two weeks in the hospital? Also, I didn't get a clear answer on whether I could go to a rehab facility locally near my home. Plus, how do they transport you? :confused:

04-03-2007, 12:23 PM
I was only 30 when I had my surgery and although I didn't go to rehab, I did have a PT and an OT each visit me at home twice a week for 4-6 weeks for issues that I had with my shoulder, neck, hips and lower back. I also had a walker and basically had to learn how to walk all over again.

Your doctor will determine what you need when you come out of surgery and he sees what type of progress you are making at the hospital.

04-03-2007, 04:59 PM
I was in the hospital for 10 days then rehab for 10 days. I went to a rehab right next to HSS but I think you can go anywhere -if transportation is involved I think they take you in a "nonemergency" ambulance so you are comfortable. (You would not want to have to sit up in a car at that point).

04-03-2007, 08:09 PM

Using the walker for nearly 4 months I think had a lot to do with the leaning forward problem. Remember that issue started right after I had that first surgery. I came out of that surgery with Kyphoscoliosis of the thoracular spine. (it was worded something like that) I also had a lot of muscle atrophy in the back. I started using a cane around 3 months on and off with the walker and then used it all the time until my next surgery which was in June the following year.