Post-Surgery 2 Weeks

I’m 23 years old and recently had a spinal fusion to correct my 50 degree and 43 degree curves in my spine. I am almost two weeks post-op and getting frustrated with how dependent I am on the people around me. I was a very busy person before this surgery and am struggling with the limitations of bending and lifting. I am slowly becoming more independent but what I struggle with the most is getting dressed and getting things off the floor. I have a grabber but it is never with me when these things seem to happen. Anybody have advice on how to pick things off the floor without bending or causing an injury? I’m terrified to make a move I’m going to regret! 

Another question I have is probably repetitive and one that people ask but never have an answer.. but when does it get better? I want to hear your stories on when things took a turn for a better so I have a little more to look forward to. Getting through the days is tough when all I can do is take short walks and lay around.. any advice on how to grow more independent and be able to move back home into my own apartment would be greatly appreciated! Thank you! 



  • challengercchallenger Posts: 1,179
    edited 07/18/2019 - 5:47 PM


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    I have 3 grabber tools in my house, that way one is always close, the main thing right now is patience.
  • Cassie, I feel your misery, especially not being in your own apartment. Good for you for reaching out. 2 weeks is right on schedule for having recovered just enough to be impatient. And congrats for undertaking a difficult surgery and recovery. It entitles you to indulge in  guilty pleasures of funny/silly movies, books, and sitcoms. Laughter heals. If you've ever had an interest in meditation, this may be a good time to practice. I think you answered your own question - you are slowly becoming more independent - after only 2 weeks. Yay! Bravo! Slow and steady wins the race. Short walks get longer every week. If your apartment has stairs, ask your therapist to work with you on mastering those. I, too, am fiercely independent and find it hard to accept help graciously. I try to reframe it as an opportunity for personal growth. And Chip has the answer - a grabber/reacher in every room. Amazon has a big selection. For convenience, my recup wardrobe consists of clothing that buttons, snaps, or wraps in the front, and baggy bottoms with drawstring waists. Not pretty, but easy! You're so young, you're bound to heal quickly - though it won't feel "quick" as you move through it. Trust that this post-op period will be a foggy memory as you look forward to a go-go 2020. Again, congrats on being a scoliosis warrior. Go, girl!!

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  • Chip, 

    My fusion took place from T2-L3 - I hope this helps! 

  • cassie

    That is a very long fusion, and being up and around is a feat in itself, I have struggled with the same things as far as patience goes, I am not a very patient person myself.

    As I said before we have several members that have long fusions, including one of our moderators, I am sure they will be along shortly to give you some better information than I can.


  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 844

    Hi Cassie!!!!

    welcome to the forum!  i'm T10 to S2 and pelvis :-) actually i'm Kathy, but that's the fusion i have.  Oh the socks....trying to put the socks on.  the WORST!  and dropping things on the floor after surgery i would just stand there and stare at them contemplating how to pick them up before the dog did....sigh.  I ended up with 3 grabber/reachers.  because i never had one with me.  so at least i could leave one in each room that i was living in (i had a bad time with stairs so lived in the livingroom, kitchen and bathroom on the first floor for quite a while after my surgery-at least 2 months).  that way i had a reacher in the room i was in, and i could putter over and get it.  got good enough to pick up a dime off the floor with it!  i also learned how to get my socks on with it.  but it was easier to just not wear socks.  or shoes.  i had slip on clogs or slippers.  it was EASILY 4 months before i felt confident enough to squat down and pick something off the floor.  i'm 2.5 years post surgery now, and routinely squat or even kneel on the floor if i need to pick something up.  it's also the easiest way to tie my shoes....but it took me 4 months.  and even at a year it was still a challenge putting that pesky left sock on. 

    recovering from these long fusions is not a fast sport.  it is slow....3 steps forward, 2 steps back.  there will be days where you feel like you have actually gone backwards!  but if you keep track of the little things you can do-like brushing your hair by yourself (that took me 4 weeks to be able to reach up with a hairbrush) or turning over in bed by yourself, or walking up stairs....lifting the coffee pot yourself....stuff like that.  i wrote everything that i did for the "first" time down, so i could keep track of my moving forward.  it is a long slow recovery.  i needed help for the first 3 weeks post surgery for everything, getting up off the toilet, having a shower.  i think i managed to walk to my barn at a month....then i gradually stopped using the walker and that was a landmark for me!  then the stairs....slow and steady.....

    and welcome again to the forum! 

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