4 Things Patients Wish They Would Have Known Before Spine Surgery

Category: Spine Surgery | Author: Stefano Sinicropi


Life is full of situations where we would have been much better off if we just would have known as few things at an earlier point in our lives. And as much as we’d love to have the winning lottery numbers hours before the balls are drawn, we’re focusing on things that we believe you can know ahead of time if you’re willing to proactively look for answers. Specifically, we’re talking about things former patients wish they would have known, expected or planned for in the wake of their spinal operation. Listening to their answers can help you in the event you need spine surgery.

“Stay ahead of your pain”

Managing pain after spine surgery takes a delicate balance. Nobody wants to over-rely on pain medications, but at the same time you don’t want to be lying in pain waiting for your medication to kick in. Listen to the doctor about how to best manage pain, and listen to your body. You know your pain tolerance and how to tell if pain is improving or getting worse better than anyone else, so try to stay ahead of your pain without just taking pills every six hours.

“Don’t Overdo It”

People want to get back on with their lives, but if you overdo it in the first few days after surgery, you could jeopardize your surgical site or your stitches. Surgery is a traumatic and draining experience for your body, so expect to be tired and not as energized for 48 hours or so after surgery while the anesthesia wears off. Get your energy from a healthy diet, but really make sure you plan ahead so you aren’t trying to work or take care of household duties that can exhaust you right after spine surgery.

“Diet and water intake is important”

Although you may not be as mobile as you were before surgery, you’re still going to lose plenty of fluids while you’re recovering. Staying hydrated helps to push more healthy blood to the surgery site and aid in recovery. Healthy food choices also help our bodies get the vitamins and nutrients it needs to help injured structures heal, and it can help prevent weight gain and added stress on the surgical site. Consider making some healthy, easy to reheat meals and storing them in your freezer prior to your operation.

“These next few weeks are crucial”

When it comes to your long-term health, these next few weeks after surgery will be critical. This is when tissues restrengthen, functional mobility is restored and scar tissue onset is prevented. If you don’t put in the work now, your surgical site may never fully heal. Once scar tissue has developed or range of motion has been limited, it takes a lot of work to reverse this damage. Now is a critical stage of your recovery where these things can be prevented, so follow your doctor’s orders.

If you can keep these four things in mind and plan for them, we’re confident you’ll have a great experience with your spine surgery. For more tips, or to talk to Dr. Sinicropi about any concerns you might have, reach out to his clinic today.


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