View Full Version : Starting back to work?

04-14-2010, 03:56 PM
Thought I would check, for those of you who have had total fusions, I have 32 screws with the 2 harrington rods, surgery was March 1st and I am seriously doing very well. It lets me know when I have overdone it, believe me. Yes, our backs can rule out lives postoperatively too! Haha! I'm thinking of going back to work next week maybe for just a few hours a day. The walls are closing in on me here at home and I will soon be out of leave at work..... Soooo, just curious if anyone else started back to work at 7 weeks? Thanks much.

PS: I have an administrative position where I sit at a computer all day long. And, I know work will go easy on me to start with as they are a great bunch of folks to work with.

04-14-2010, 06:31 PM
Hi Rita
I'm really pleased for you that you're doing so well!

In response to whether or not you could/should return to work....

I think I would first consult my surgeon for a check-up to make sure I was 'good to go' and to get his input on the matter. And I would probably use all my leave time for recovery, however, that's just me.

I'm sure others will weigh in - but whatever you decide, Best of Luck to you! :)

04-14-2010, 10:42 PM
Rita, It's wonderful that you're feeling well enough to go back to work so soon! I will have a little less that 3 months to recover from my June 8th surgery before I have to return to work in September, and I'm hoping I'll be up to it then! Of course, I'm a little older than you and that makes a difference. What does Dr. Lenke say about it?

04-15-2010, 01:59 PM
I am new at this and it is my first time writing - my degree is 75 and I am 62. I will be having my surgery at Emory in Atlanta - my surgery will be T2 - L1.

04-15-2010, 02:19 PM
Dr. Lenke says it is okay with him and it is totally up to me according to how I feel. But, absolutely no bending, stooping, reaching, etc. He listed the restrictions on my Release to Duty slip that they faxed to my work. And, according to my work, they're going to be pretty easy on me. I'll probably be answering the phone and computer work, which I've been doing some of that at home anyways. I know I'm going to be tired, so I told work we'd just have to see how it goes. I might wind up lasting 2 hours or maybe 4 we'll just have to see. But, I think it's going to be okay. It will be nice to get some sort of normalcy back in my life.

04-15-2010, 03:18 PM
Hi Rita,

Glad to hear you are doing so well. I am older than you and I think that makes some difference. Also, my workplace gave me the full 12 weeks required in the Family Leave Act for things like pregnancy or family illness. So I didn't start back to my desk job until after 12 weeks. I did a lot of walking every day during that time to help my back heal.

Then I started back at 4 hours a day for a while and slowly increased to full time as stamina allowed.

The problem I had, other than being tired, was sitting for long periods. I got very stiff. My doctor recommended moving every 30 minutes -- just getting out of my chair and moving around a little bit. That helped.

At first when I returned I would come home from work and go straight to bed to nap. Eventually my stamina returned and now I enjoy a pretty normal evening (after 9 months).

Best of luck to you. Sounds like you are doing great.


04-15-2010, 03:42 PM
Rita you sound like a strong personality. I know the boredom will drive a person crazy. Please just follow what ever the doctor sez. I would like to know was this a complete reconstruction. Please excuse me as I am new to the forum. If you read my post you will understand why I am asking. Sounds like a lot of hardware, but you sound like your doing great. Be proud odf yourself.:)

04-15-2010, 04:33 PM
Hi Rita, That's great that you're going to be able to go back to work, at least part-time. I know if I were in a desk job, I would be ready at this point. However, because of what I do (instr. music--hauling instr, going to 5 bldgs., moving stands, chairs, pianos, etc. on a daily basis), I won't go back until next fall which will be about 7 months after my surgery. Fortunately, I had plenty of sick days so am not losing out financially. Staff at my dr.'s said to just remember no matter how good you feel, your spine is still fragile, so stick to the rules. Good luck. It's another step toward returning to normal life!

04-15-2010, 09:16 PM
Hi Rita! Wow! Just the sound of that sounds great, doesn't it? You are already talking about going back to work!!! WOW!!! Listen to your body and if Lenke says it's okay, then see how much you can handle. Personally, I know the people I work with and they would push me for more, more, more all the time. I am even thinking about takig a short "me time" trip towards the end of my leave to reward myself for going through all this! Hey, they told me I have to go back for a followup on 6/16. Do you have to do that? I am wonderng if I can just have xrays taken here in cleveland and send to him instead of traveling back there in June.

04-15-2010, 11:46 PM

Thatís incredible. With a 95, at 7 weeks, it would set a record. I laid low for a long time....


Welcome to the forum. When is your surgery?


04-16-2010, 05:17 AM
My DR said I can go back to nursing in 8-12 weeks. I'm thinking more like 12. I am starting to worry that this won't be possible so soon though after reading many posts. May have to switch over to something less physically demanding like case management. I think it's great your ready to go back, very encouraging!:)

04-16-2010, 08:57 AM
Hi jsully,

I've been meaning to ask, what type of cardiac nursing do you do specifically?

I am a cath lab nurse, worked a long time in crtitical care before that.

Take care,

04-16-2010, 09:26 AM

I can't provide any experience since I have not had surgery, but you give me great hope if I do proceed....One of the things I worry about is going back to work, as I would need to.

My job has evolved from a 100% desk job to maybe 50-50 desk or being "on the floor" in retail. Being on the floor has been surprisingly fun but extremely challenging physically, for me. With the economy, that's the way it is- I will do what needs to be done, even though my company seems to have forgotten that I have this other Desk Job and it piles up. I have to sneak down there and sew.

But enough about me.:o

It's just so great to hear you considering going back to work so soon. Absolutely great news however it shakes out.

And SUSANP: I am worried that your post will get lost in the wash here. I am encouraging you to start a new thread (people are happy to help you with this if you are still navigating this forum and don't know how). Sounds like you will have many concerns and might need lots of support. Welcome to the forum!


04-16-2010, 10:44 AM
Hey Gayle,
I work in CPRU which is a cardiac procedure recovery unit. We prepare and recovery cath's, PTCA, EP's and devices mostly. I see you had surgery quite a while ago, are you able to slide pt to and from the strechers and wear lead? If so how long before you could?