When you need back surgery, there’s a lot to think about. Not only do you need to prepare before surgery, but you need to be ready for your recovery as well. The recovery may be the most important part of your procedure, as it can make or break your future.
At Kellogg Brain and Spine, located in both Wilsonville and Portland, Oregon, Dr. Jordi Kellogg and his team offer back surgery for a variety of conditions. Dr. Kellogg takes every precaution possible to ensure a safe surgery and successful recovery.
When you have back pain, relief is vital to living a normal life. But most back pain doesn’t require back surgery. In fact, many times, back pain relieves itself within several months.
Typically, back pain treatment is conservative in nature. Your treatment is based on your symptoms and how the pain is affecting your life. Dr. Kellogg recommends noninvasive therapies such as:
However, when conservative measures aren’t working, and your pain persists for weeks to months at a time, surgery may be necessary. It’s certainly an option when your pain is relieved conservatively. It’s also needed in certain conditions, such as:
There are different spine surgery procedures, which repair specific conditions. For example, a discectomy is used in some cases of herniated discs. A laminectomy, on-the-other-hand, is a procedure that creates increased room in your spinal canal to relieve pressure on your nerves from spinal stenosis.
The length of your recovery depends on the surgical procedure you had and how well you follow the post-surgical therapy regimen. It also is based on your overall health and how you adhere to recovery instructions.
For smaller outpatient back surgery that doesn’t involve implants, you could be back to your normal activities in as little as three months.
For larger, more complex procedures, it can take up to six months to even attempt your normal activities. In fact, it may be a year until you’re back to full strength and mobility.
The biggest factor in determining the length of your recovery lies in the days and weeks after your procedure. Being active in your recovery is the only way to ensure success of the procedure.
Dr. Kellogg and his team provide you with all the tools necessary for a successful recovery after surgery. This includes a number of tips for the weeks and months after the procedure, which include:
Pain control is important in the first few days after surgery. If Dr. Kellogg prescribed pain medication, make sure to take it when you need it. Don’t let pain fester and get worse. You can also use ice and heat to help relieve discomfort at the site.
If your pain isn’t controlled, or seems to be getting worse after surgery, don’t hesitate to contact Dr. Kellogg and his team.
Sleep is important for many things, including recovery after spine surgery. Make sure to ask Dr. Kellogg about the best position for sleeping following your specific procedure. It’s important to support your spine during sleep by putting a pillow under your knees. This helps support your lower spine.
Sitting too long can put excess pressure on your spine, which isn’t conducive to healing after surgery. You should get up and move around frequently to take that pressure off your spine. You also don’t want to allow your knees to be higher than your hips.
Physical therapy is the best way to aid your recovery after surgery. Your therapist works closely with you to slowly increase your strength and flexibility in your spine. Adhering to your physical therapy routine is one of the best ways to speed up your recovery.
Bracing may be necessary after surgery to stabilize and support your spine. Make sure to wear the back brace as instructed, to ensure proper healing of your spine.
A healthy diet goes further than just managing your weight post-op. A diet rich in protein, fruits, and vegetables helps you heal and keeps weight off while you’re healing and inactive.
If you need back surgery from an expert team, call one of our offices in Portland or Wilsonville, Oregon, to schedule a consultation. You can also request an appointment while you’re here on our website.