View Full Version : Sleeping before Surgery

Houston Curves
02-24-2007, 07:43 AM
I cannot sleep because I am in so much pain. I only got about 1-2 hours of sleep last night and that is only a little worse than usual. I take ambien and even THAT doesn't help. I have tried everything I can think of including a pillow between my knees. Nothing seems to help. I've even been to chiropracters and not even that helps.

We are talking about getting a new bed. Any suggestions on mattresses? What about the temperpedic? I know it's expensive, but I would do just about anything to just get some sleep. I know they recommend not getting any new mattresses until after your surgery, but I have got to sleep. Any suggestions would be absolutely wonderful. Thanks.


02-24-2007, 11:22 AM
I remember when I had a mattress that was really firm -at some point my back could not take it any more and I had alot of pain at night. As soon as I got rid of it my pain went away! I got an "Englander". It is a pillow top and it is even more comfortable to me now after surgery than it was before. I wonder if your pain could be remedied just as easily-go to a mattress store and try them out!

Karen Ocker
02-24-2007, 12:37 PM
No mattress helped me pre-op. I even bought a sleep on air type. The temperpedic toppers are very hot and compress into hardness.

What helped was a small travel pillow under my right butt; this opened up the space between my vertebra which was squeezing the nerves. I also bought an "egg crate" bed topper from a surgical supply store. I found the old fashioned foam much better than any of the new temperpedic type foams because those tend to compress into an uncomfortable hardness. I think, in my scoliosis career, I bought every type of bed topper, pillow or roll known to mankind. A lot of it is trial and error.

One doctor gave me amitriptiline(elavil)-(antidepressant) to sleep. I did sleep but I woke up so stiff. I never used ambien or other benzodiaz (valium.xanax) these can make one more depressed, cause memory problems - not to mention addictive properties.

02-24-2007, 12:41 PM
Hi Ann,
We just bought a new mattress - I had revision surgery in November. We went to several mattress stores and tried them. WHen you go, they recommend that you lay on each mattress for 10-15 minutes. Personally, I tried the tempurpedic, and while it felt "neat", it was really hard for me to roll onto my side and get up - I didn't like that. I was getting a lot of pressure pain, so we opted for a pocket coil mattress rather than a steel frame. It has a really nice pillow top that has a memory foam layer. I don't experience anywhere near the same pressure point pain that I did on our other mattress. I tried sleeping on top of my quilt or pillows to soften the bed - that helped for awhile. Foam bed toppers have helped too. I know how frustrating it can be to not be able to sleep when you're tired!

02-24-2007, 05:05 PM

The only thing that I ever did was to take 800 mg of ibuprophen at bedtime and during the day. At first, it made me a little sleepy during the day but I worked up to it. You will have to stop taking it before surgery. I have a tempurapedic mattress topper on our bed and I love it. Our bed is a queen size, the topper was $100. at Sam's. I have had it on there for 3 years now. I don't get hot on it, but as you know this is ceiling fan and air condition capital here in Houston.

02-25-2007, 04:48 PM
Hi Ann,

Now would be a good time for you to find a comfortable mattress. If you find one that feels good pre-op it should be that much better later on. I bought one of my previous mattress' when I was 8 months pregnant. I figured if I could get comfy at that point it would be a fine mattress after I had the baby. I also bought one prior to my back surgery for the same reason. Both times it worked out great.

Be careful considering the tempurpedic mattress, you sink into it and it is hard to roll over. The mattress topper like Theresa got is a better choice if you are exploring that type. After surgery and for some time after it is really tough to roll over, you don't need to be trapped in a mattress!

My current mattress (to quote my 17 yr old son) is "foam covered concrete!"

02-25-2007, 08:18 PM
I recommend this body pillow and a memory foam mattress topper before you try a new and expensive bed. The pillow can support your back, front and wedge between your knees. I sleep great now.


Houston Curves
02-27-2007, 07:43 PM
Thank you every one that replied!!!! We found a mattress that we really like (hope we still do in 6 months)! We got the Posturepedic Posturetech Plus Pillow Top - expensive, but feels great.

We also broke the news about the impending surgery to our families. Mine were very negative as I have a sister with a failed surgery (she has a morphine pump surgically implanted and is on disability), but my husband's family were very supportive. It's nice that everyone knows now and that we will have some help with the girls, at least for a couple of weeks.

Thanks again!!