blues after surgery

Hi All!

I know I am posting a lot.  I am now a week post op.  Another forum member used the word, "roller coaster," to describe this recovery.  Some days I am optimistic and hopeful, others days seem so heavy.  Any others can share experience?  



  • mlavellemlavelle Teaneck NjPosts: 40
    Thanks Ron!!!
  • hvillshhvills Suzhou, ChinaPosts: 809


    We've all been there... a jillion things contribute to the roller coaster ride... the trauma to your body, the anestheisia, the pain meds, the change of daily routine, etc...   Just try to roll with it... and don't get too nervous or up-tight about what's happening.  Time is the only healer of it... and in time you will get your normal self back.  Go out and have a short walk... that will help clear your head.   Hang in there... good times are ahead.

  • advertisement
  • Mary,
    I can totally relate!  All of the things Harry said, plus the unpredictability of how you'll feel any given day, inability to work, etc.  It will get better, I promise!  Hang in there.  You will start seeing improvement, and hopefully that will improve your mood.
  • Mary

    I live in the UK so some things are different - but post op blues I think are the same! It's not unusual - you go from doing as much as you can before the op that is supposed to help with pain/ lack of use etc. Then post op you have more pain & the blues hit you - it's really common. I think many people don't want to talk about it as depression/The blues post operatively is because even though we are in the 21st Century there is still a bit of a stigma over the blues. 

    All I can say is it is completely normal to go up & down mood wise both pre op as well as post op! You have had a major invasion on your neural network - no wonder you are cycling up & down!

    I think I am starting to now - I head in for surgery on 19th June - Posterior Cervical Foraminotomy/Discectomy, & to be honest I am not looking forward to it!! I have had an anterior cervical discectomy, foraminotomy & fusion (yeah it was a lot in one go!) back in 2010 but I had my daughter who came home to look after me - this time it's me & the cats! I can't use my left arm for much of anything - crockery break rate has increased in the 12months it has taken to get to being a few days away from the op!

    All I can say is rest, treat yourself gently, don't be harsh on yourself - and look for 1 good thing in a day - in a few more weeks all of this hopefully will behind you - and just a bad dream.

    Best wishes across the pond!
  • mlavellemlavelle Teaneck NjPosts: 40
    Thank you so much for all the encouragement.  I think I forget how traumatizing this whole thing has been.  I am so very grateful to have such good medical care, etc.  That's one thing!!
  • advertisement
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 4,299
    edited 07/23/2019 - 1:08 PM
    hello judicat !
    Welcome to Veritas Health Forumplease click on link for helpful information!
  • smartens162smartens162 Manitoba, CanadaPosts: 361
    I have had several surgeries in my lifetime, only one was spine related.  But each and every time, depression would follow.  I honestly think that the trauma of the surgery, while we are 'under' while it is going on, has to register in the psyche and we have to process it like anything else.  I think it helps to be familiar with what your surgery all entails, before you go into it, as much as some people don't really want to know the gory details.   But add to that all the other stuff that's been already mentioned, and it would be hard not to be hit with some depression.  I agree with the advice to take a walk.  Whatever you are allowed to do post-surgery that will give you the feeling of doing something good for your body will go a long way to beating the blues!   
  • erinb40eerinb40 EnglandPosts: 20
    Gosh yes, I even feel guilty when I feel good!!!! 
  • MagistraMarlaMMagistraMarla San Antonio, TexasPosts: 78
    I had never experienced depression in my life until that first month after my first spine surgery.  My husband went back to work just a few days after I got home and I was afraid to try to walk by myself.  I felt trapped in the house and was almost constantly pacing.  It was the most horrible feeling that I have ever had.  I didn't feel that my head had cleared until the six week mark.
    For over a year, I found that my brain couldn't focus.  I've always been an avid reader, reading a six hundred page book in less than a week was normal for me.  As a teacher, I used to read two or three at a time when I was seeking good reference material for my class lectures.  After the surgery, it took me over six months to read one book.  I often forgot that I was reading a book, then picked it up again, and would have to re-read large sections because I had forgotten most of it.
    At the fourteen month mark, my focus suddenly returned and I began to enjoy reading again.
    Now I'm going to have a revision surgery in October.  I've told my husband that he absolutely must take FMLA this time and be there for me, or I'll refuse the surgery.  I also dread that lack of focus.  I'm trying to get some books read now.
  • mlavellemlavelle Teaneck NjPosts: 40
    Thank you all so much for responding.  I am now at the 2 month mark.  The depression started to lift around 6 weeks.  Before that I contemplated asking my doc for meds to cope with it.  I have more compassion now for those who suffer depression because of this experience.  I still can't focus enough to read a book.  Thank you so so much for all the support of this forum.
Sign In or Join Us to comment.