View Full Version : Post-op question

11-17-2010, 07:54 PM
How long did it take you to go back to regular activities such as driving, working, exercising, school? In other words, to normal life?

11-17-2010, 08:15 PM
well for drive a car 6 weeks, work depins on the surgeon, school i went to back one month after, the orther one it lifted slowly.

11-17-2010, 08:26 PM
Drive - 10.5 weeks
Work (part-time desk job) - 13 weeks
Housework - so far I can load the top dishwasher rack, wash dishes by hand, and do the delicate laundry loads
Grocery - 13 weeks made my first solo trip...everything bagged so no bag weighed more than 10 lbs.

11-18-2010, 03:03 PM
I am almost 3 months post op and I feel like I'm back to normal, but since I still have lifting, bending and twisting restrictions, I just have to do things a little differently. I started driving after about 5 weeks but only very close to home for the first few weeks until I felt more comfortable. I could not load or unload the bottom rack of the dishwasher, either. I do now, but I do it squatting. I try to keep my back very straight and I get tired of using the grabber thing so I squat a lot. At first it was hard on my thighs and knees but you get used to it. I have a front load washer and dryer so I move a little stool in front of them and sit down to load and unload the washer and dryer. ( my husband carries the laundry basket for me) With groceries, they carry them out to the car and then I take the heavier things out of the bag one or 2 at a time until they are light or I just take the perishable stuff in over several trips and then let my husband bring the rest of it in when he gets home. I quit working about 7 years ago when my mother required a lor of care, but I started attending some volunteer meetings that I do after about 8 weeks. But that's not full time work.

11-18-2010, 03:07 PM
One more thing. My only exercise is walking and I'm now at 3 miles most days.(at least 5 or 6 days a week and usually 7). At my 8 week checkup I was allowed to start doing arm curls only with no more than 5# per arm. Dr B said he would put me on an exercise program at 6 months.

02-01-2011, 02:01 PM
Drive - 10.5 weeks
Work (part-time desk job) - 13 weeks
Housework - so far I can load the top dishwasher rack, wash dishes by hand, and do the delicate laundry loads
Grocery - 13 weeks made my first solo trip...everything bagged so no bag weighed more than 10 lbs.

Hi Kathy,

Did Dr Lenke give you any directions on how much walking to do? I would really like to get back to doing walking exercise tapes (Leslie Sansone) but I am not sure if it's too soon. I know they okayed walked but the tapes are faster and have a few more moves. Did he say most activity was okay as long as it doesn't cause pain? I was just curious if he gave you any instructions. I feel like the post-op care/instructions are really lacking.

02-02-2011, 11:52 AM
Hi LaurieAnne,
I was very conservative until my 3 month check up. I did walk and worked my way up to 2 miles at 3 months. At 6 months, I now walk 2.5 miles each day. I don't recall Dr. Lenke giving specific distance goals, but I was trying to keep up with LisaB and Dr. Bridwell's advice (I could never quite keep up with Lisa...smiles). In terms of walking speed, I think your body will let you know if the pace is too fast. You are quite young, so your strength may return more quickly than mine. My current pace is about 2.2 miles per hour and my goal is to get to 3.0 mph by spring.

At 6 months, I was approved for small hand held weights, but am not yet allowed to use weight machines. Also at 6 months, I was given prescriptions for physical therapy. I am excited to start aqua therapy this month!

You had an amazing correction. Send me a pm if you ever want to talk! Best Wishes!

02-02-2011, 12:18 PM
I've been told to expect not to be able to ride in a car or drive for about 4 months b/c of the risk of a car accident - now I'm wondering what this is about? Maybe because red lights in my town are considered advisory.... Seriously, I've never seen worse drivers than the ones here.

With a jarring 2 hour train commute to work, I'm assuming I will be out of the office for 4+ months at least - I don't want to get on the train and be shuffled all around while carrying 10 lbs of stuff until I've had an xray to check the fusion progress and am cleared by my surgeon for that ride (it's quite bumpy and often jerky enough that I've caught my laptop as it flew off my lap). And I'm not permitted to return to work until I've been to the office to be cleared by our onsite medical staff.

02-02-2011, 12:37 PM
I have a 1.5 hour commute to work on a bus, and I returned at 9 weeks post op. I am just careful with how much weight my bag is - I don't carry a laptop and my bag is fairly light weight. Just a week or so ago (now at 4 months post op) I started carrying a little more weight in my bag, like lunch.

I don't think you'll have to be out for 4 months but if you can get that much time off work, enjoy the extra healing time.

Jacque's Mom
02-02-2011, 07:11 PM
I am 8 weeks post op, and I am returning to work on 2/28 for a total of 12 weeks off. I commute to the city by bus about an hour each way. I am really feeling great, but am going to finish my 6 weeks of PT before I return.

02-04-2011, 04:00 PM
Laurie Ann,
I agree that post op instructions were minimal, at best. I had two different medications for muscle spasms, so I'm thinking, do I choose one or the other or both? I don't think I actually had any muscle spasms so I just left them alone. After fainting at 4 weeks post op, I reread a hand-out, but there wasn't much to it. Possibly, I was given more details verbally but I could probably only retain less than 50% of anything that I was told any way. I think a more detailed hand-out of do's and don't's would be helpful.

02-04-2011, 06:40 PM
I agree totally. Instructions were pretty generic. They should be coverd more in the preop appointment when we are more aware and can retain what we are told! It seems like it would be pretty easy for the Dr. to have specific scoliosis back surgery instructions...