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Two Month Update for Two Level TLIF

downinmyheartddowninmyheart Posts: 495
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Good evening, lovies!

I know it has been a while since I have posted, so I wanted to give everyone an update. First off I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to the Spine-Health forum creators for bringing us together, and to all of you wonderful people for offering support to the many in need. Without you my surgery and recovery would have been alot darker. You have enlightened me in many ways. My blessings to you all.

On to my recovery:

I think that I am doing pretty well. I am still at home, and will be until at least mid-February, possibly a bit longer. I will go to have a CT and post op check up with the NS at the end of Feb.

I am now able to walk 3-4 miles per day. I am able to do most household duties, with the exception of the things close to the ground. I use my grabber, I am like a ninja with that thing now! :) I have had to squat down to the floor about 4-5 times in the last few weeks and really would like to still avoid that.

I do tire after being on my feet for a while, and I do not realize how achy I am until I stop. Anything from 20 minutes on is grounds for an ice pack or heat wrap when I am done.

I have been able to take care of marital relations without too much difficulty. I do suggest asking your doctor for a brochure of positions, and try them out. Read the whole thing aloud with your partner.

There are still some activities and movements that cause me to click and pop. The nurse told me to avoid these movements if possible. It is the soft tissues around my instrumentation moving. So, I try to avoid that.

Most of my pain is in the lower back. I do have some hip pain. My low back pain seems to move from left to right.

I am having some tenderness and pain at the incision site as well. The bottom right incision is pretty lumpy and tender, and PT has been massaging that to try and smooth it out.

I am going to PT once a week at my request. I have started to do some very light weight training and some core strength exercises. My favorite part of the whole thing is the piriformis (muscle deep in buttocks) stretch and manipulation, and the ice or heat and e-stim. I need to find my e-stim machine...

I am still having quite a bit of strange nerve pain starting at the lower right incision in my back and going down the right buttock, outer thigh, and hip. I have increased my gabapentin dosage to 1200mgs and the pain is somewhat tolerable. Activity increases the pain. Clothes that move over the area when I walk irritate me quite a bit. Hopefully this will be gone within the year.

I still cannot get close to touching my toes. I still cannot effectively shave my own legs. I still cannot enjoy a soak in my bathtub. I am following the no BLT and do not lift more than 10 lbs when I am being a good girl.

I did stop taking my muscle relaxer last week, and so far have been doing fine with the exception of right after rigorous activity. Mainly the spasms have been staying high near the buttocks and do not travel down my legs anymore.

Mornings. No one told me about the mornings. My biggest and only real complaint about anything since the surgery is the pain I feel in the mornings. The ache of the ages has settled into my lower back and hips every morning. I dread moving at all. It takes sooooo much effort to get out of the bed. I say thank on the inhale breath and you on the exhale breath, This helps me get through the pain and start the day with gratitude although I don't feel like it immediately. Once I get up and moving the majority of the intense pain has fallen away, normally by the time I make it to the coffee pot.

Hope this gives you all some insight! I have missed you. :)

One Love,



  • I'm glad you're healing well. It's nice to hear from you. I hope you'll continue to progress normally from your operation. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • I wish I would have done better after my 2 level TLIF. At this stage I was still having a lot of pain and was taking steroids to get it under control. After 8 months, I can't walk or sit for long. I have the option of having an SCS or pump put in sometime in the future. I hope you continue to do excellent like you are, but remember not to overdo it. Your body takes a long while to recovery from this type of major surgery. Take care
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  • I am sorry to hear that you did not fare better for that surgery. Thank you so much for your well wishes. Thank you for reminding me to take it easy. :)

    One Love,

  • It is always wonderful to hear someone doing great after surgery and it reassures me. Keep up with the good work <:P
  • Glad to hear you;re doing so well. Susan
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  • Good for you! Must warn you, when you feel the best is when you overdo it!

    I am so happy that overall you are a spiney-ninja girl! It gives all of us hope and joy to know that one of us is doing well!

  • Yeah, when I am feeling ok and up and going it is fine. But, the moment I sit down. Crash!!!!!
  • Wonderful news! I am happy to hear that you are getting better :)
  • Stephanie, glad to hear you are progressing. This is definitely a long haul recovery as you are finding out. Once a spiney, always a spiney! Take it easy and keep up the good work. >:D< Cali-Sue
  • Thanks, Cali. I feel like I have come so far, and so little of a distance in the last couple of months. It has sure gone by quickly for me. Thanks for your support and love.

    One Love,

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