View Full Version : Sway Back

02-11-2008, 03:29 AM
Hi all,

Just wondering if anyone else has this after surgery. I am now about 4 months post-op and I am one of the few that has gained weight after surgery :( . And I now have a swayed back and it really pushes my tummy forward. My back and hips feel really hard to the touch. Could that be that I am still swollen? I am not too happy with the way my body looks now. But, besides that... I am greatful for not having the pain that I had before surgery anymore :D. Can anyone comfort me on the way my new body looks in which I am not very pleased with.

Thanks to you all :)

02-11-2008, 08:19 AM
Hey Debbie--from one "gainer" to another, I know how you are feeling about the weight and your body... It's a bummer, but we'll get through this. I'm at 9 months post-op and I've been doing my WW diet for a month now, lost 3 lbs. the first week and then only 1 lb. since then. It is so discouraging. I keep waiting for that treadmill I ordered to arrive! They were on back-order because of all the New Year's resolutions or something. Grrrr! :mad:

Question-- are you sure you have a sway back? Or is it just the gentle curve of normal lordosis? Our backs are supposed to sway in and then go out some near our bottoms... if it doesn't, you have what I think is called abnormal lordosis or flatback. I'm assuming that since you are fused to the sacrum, this may be the case--that maybe you curve more than you used to, on purpose. Has anything in your side profile changed recently/since your surgery? You may just be having a hard time getting used to that new look. And if your back goes in more, just above the hips, then your stomach has to go out more... :eek: As far as being "hard" goes-- my back is very hard to the touch where my spine/rods, etc. are... even though I have plenty of padding elsewhere! :rolleyes:

When I get discouraged (fairly often, it seems!) about my weight/body image, I try to buoy up myself by saying "you can do it--but it's just going to take awhile..." Give yourself a chance to recover a little more, eat a healthy diet now with plenty of fruit and veggies and milk products, and cut out most junk (you probably shouldn't (?) really "diet" yet) and that way when a little more time goes by you can easily shift into an actual diet if you want to and not deprive your healing body of the nutrients it needs. My scoli nurse gave me the go ahead to diet if it was a healthy one like WW-- and a slow loss of about 1 lb. a week. It's being stubborn and much slower than that after the initial loss, so I guess I'm good to go. At this rate, I'm hoping I'll be about where I want to be, weight-wise, when I return to work/school in August. Hopefully I'll keep up the hard work that long. But it gets old fairly fast of not having ANY treats to speak of. OK, I do figure into my points a low fat ice cream bar in the evening... ;) Eating about 20 pts. worth of food a day keeps me feeling fairly hungry most of the time. Oh well! At least I know I'm doing what I can, and I just have to be patient and hope eventually the weight will come off. AND MAYBE THIS TIME I'LL KEEP IT OFF!!!!! :o

(I was SO HOPING (all fingers and toes crossed) I would be like all those people that lose weight from the surgery.... but no, I had to gain weight in the hospital even with my ileus, and then gain more (this time my fault, entirely) over the holidays. Do you have a perpetual battle with weight? Or is this something new for you??? Mine is an historic battle, spanning decades, with hundreds of pounds slain but reinforcements always appear again...) Will I ever "get it" that I can not ever go off my diet? This time I finally just bought a couple of WW cookbooks and figure I'll make hubby (who never has a weight problem) eat "healthily" for the rest of his life too... :D I am in battle mode and determined to slay the enemy yet once again! :p

All kidding aside, I wish you well on your journey to being happy about your body. As far as the "swayback" goes: when is your next post-op check-up? If you think something has changed, and you're not scheduled to go there for awhile, go ahead and contact them and ask about it. You probably haven't even gained that much weight-- but if you have, it can come off, with some work, at some point in time. Give yourself a little break for now as you recover. There are so many other challenges to deal with! Just try not to gain any more in the meantime. Your #1 priority has to be HEALING-- other things will fall into place when you need them to. Take care--and best wishes!

02-11-2008, 05:21 PM
I'm not sure on that question. I know that when i'm driving my middle back does not touch the back of the seat. My shoulder blades touch and so does the back of my head. Is this normal? I would like to see if anyone has a side profile picture after surgery that they can post here.
As far as my weight gain...I am now eating healthier. I was just eating too much junk food. My nephew was staying here to help me out after surgery and he loves junk food and that is what he would buy at the store. He never gains a pound :p . So now, he has just moved out and no more junk food in the house....hip hip hoorah!!! When I shop I only buy good stuff...i.e sugar free, fat free, less carbs etc. especially when I need to lose weight. About 20 lbs. and I'll be happy ;) We can do it!!!

02-11-2008, 06:44 PM
I had a flat back before the surgery. They were able to restore some of the natural curve but I wouldn't say that I have a sway back. I still think its a bit on the flat side. These were taken today.

02-11-2008, 06:57 PM
Debbie- Hi. I do feel that my hips & above are still very hard & I am a yr 1/2 out so I guess that's how it will stay! I think we all tend to over analyze our bodies after this surgery at least I do! I have started to gain weight now although I'm still fairly thin, but my stomachalso sticks out, more on the left side(incision). My concern is my left hip is out a bit more than the right and I sometimes think it is getting worse. Other times it looks ok.
My original curve was 95(lower) & was fused at 60 so I obviously still have a good size curve! Having such a large curve still, even though fused, makes me over analyze it.....You probably look better than you think!
Ly :)

02-11-2008, 08:01 PM
Hi Debbie,
I am a year post op and at first I thought my tummy stuck out too much-I think I was just used to the deformity and the rib hump, and then when it went away and I actually had a waist and a rear end, it looked odd to me. Part of the tummy was swelling- it lasted a very long time for me. Now I love my new figure! The middle of my back does not touch the back of a chair either. But this is actually more normal than before, and I had NO rear end before, now I do and I kind of like it! I think you will come to like your new look-

02-12-2008, 09:38 AM
Geish, you look fabulous. One would never know you had such a major surgery. You leave me hopeful.


02-12-2008, 09:51 AM
Geish, you look fabulous. One would never know you had such a major surgery. You leave me hopeful.


Thank you. The before pictures would blow you away. I was twisted and bent over, more than I even knew. It really wasn't until the night before surgery that I had any idea how bad I looked. I had my daughter take pictures at the hotel and when I looked at the pictures I asked her"why didn't you tell me I looked that bad in my bathing suit?" she didn't know what to say. Her reply was "I didn't want you to feel bad".

You will look and feel so much better when this is all over for you too. I am still amazed every time I look in a mirror. I am far from perfect, but I sure do look a whole lot better than I did before the surgery. And I feel better too. Pain is a rare thing now.

02-12-2008, 10:35 AM
Yes, Geish, you look SUPER! :cool: Way to go! Debbie--will we ever make it? Regardless, we can give it a good try. No--wait-- you're right, we CAN do it! I don't think I can ever look that good, (I'm a realist) --and I doubt if I'll EVER be able to post a pic in a swimsuit-- unless everyone promises to wear blindfolds. Naaah. That wouldn't work, would it?!!! If I ever get to the point of looking anywhere near that nice, maybe I would at least be tempted to a post a pic, swimsuit or otherwise.

Debbie--it sounds like you have built a good foundation for healthy eating. No more junk! Just healthy foods! I think you just need to get used to your new curves--besides Geish's wonderful pics, take a look at x-rays or diagrams of lateral views of the spine, and realize that there's not much fat (regardless of weight problems) that cover it till you get down to your "tush." Backs curve. Yours probably looks very natural.

Chris--even though I don't look like that (and haven't for decades), I do feel tons better from the surgery. I'm still working on strength, but I don't have the same pains or anything. Just some aching when I overdo. I echo what Geish said about you feeling and looking better after the surgery. You'll do great!

I go back to see Dr. H in about 3 weeks... I don't know about you other posters, but I get a little apprehensive for appointments, thinking something could possibly be wrong--so it's always a relief to get them over with. Know what I mean?

Anyone hear from Pam lately? Or how trulyaries or kdawn did yesterday? Or from MrsWh? Or anyone else with recent surgeries that hasn't posted recently? It was good to hear Janet was home and doing ok.

02-12-2008, 11:30 AM
Geish...WOW! I can only hope to be so straight :D

02-12-2008, 12:35 PM
I sure do hope everyone here realizes we all have our own body issues. Thank you for the compliments,I do appreciate them. I posted in a bathing suit because I don't have any xrays and I was trying to help. Everything else would have hidden what I was trying to show. I have never been this thin in my life except when I was at the police academy and I worked much harder to get that thin while I was there.

I look at these pictures and I see a tummy pooch. I look in the mirror straight on and I still see a curve to the left. Not complaining mind you, I am so much better than I was before, I just see all of the things I always worried about. We are all harder on ourselves than anyone else would be. Each and every one of us is beautiful, inside and out. We as women need to quit beating ourselves up because we don't look like supermodels.

My favorite gift ever was from my daughters this past Christmas. It was a collage from Maui titled "The Goddess". This is the poem that came with it:
There is a Goddess in every woman. Mother, Daughter, Sister, Friend. Whatever age, race or religion, we are women first. Since the beginning, women around the world have been leaders, healers, nurturers, and warriors. Beautiful and Powerful, Honor who you are, Your special place in the world. Celebrate the Goddess in you.

I challenge each and every one of you to celebrate your inner Goddess! XO ALicia

02-12-2008, 12:53 PM
Thank you so much for sharing the poem. What amazing daughters you have!

I was thrilled to see your pics. You are right, we all have our own body issues to deal with but when you take into consideration where you've come from, no one can deny that you look MARVELOUS!

I go back to my scolio surgeon next Thursday, Feb. 21. I can't decide if I'm hoping he'll say I should go ahead now and have surgery or wait. I am so ready for the pain to stop because from week to week I can tell it's getting a little worse. But in the same instant I'm thinking how in the world will everything get done while I'm recovering?!?!?! I'm not worried about the pain. That's why God invented pain meds and I figure at least there's an end to that pain. It's the time issue that scares me. As I've said before, my oldest daughter will be a high school senior next year, my son will be a sophomore and my baby will be in the 6th grade. I DON'T WANT TO MISS OUT ON ANYTHING THEY DO! I know when I look at the big picture surgery will make it possible to do more with my kids in the future, but sometimes that future seems so far away. WOW, was that a picture of my thought process you guys didn't necessarily want to see? Sometimes it's pretty scary in Beckyland! Sorry for the ranting! I just need to go back to what I know is true-everything happens in the time it is intended to happen.

Thank you to all the brave souls on the forum for sharing your stories. They are truly amazing! My husband asked me last night if the forum had helped me or made me more anxious. I told him it's the best thing I could have found to ease my fears, gain sooooo much knowledge and find amazing support. I just kept goin on and on about how wonderful everyone is and he finally said "OK, I get it!" I appreciate everyone!

02-21-2008, 01:32 AM
Hey, just thought I'd add my two cents...
I put on weight after the surgery too! I was hoping that I'd lose the few kg's I'd put on with the stress eating beforehand, but NOOOO! Stink! I'd lost heaps of weight after my first surgery, so thought the same thing would happen. I was given lots of chocolatey treats, and happily munched through them!
I'm on the zone diet now, and it's been really good. I've lost 1.3kg (about 2 pounds) in the first week, so here's hoping!

02-21-2008, 12:46 PM
I did the same thing. I was eating like there was no tomorrow before surgery thinking that i was going to lose weight too, but NOOOO. I put on like 20lbs and I am trying so hard to lose it. Why can't it be as easy to lose as it is to gain...why why why.....ggrrrrrrr. I think that when I lose the weight that I will get used to the sway back and it may actually look normal. That is what I'm hoping for.