How to Prepare for Your Spine Surgery

January 17, 2019 | Back Pain, surgeons, Surgery

Spine surgery is understandably a scary time. As your surgery date approaches, it’s important to prepare yourself as much as possible for the day of the surgery and the recovery afterward. Being prepared will result in more confidence going in, no surprises on your surgery day, and a comfortable recovery period.

Preparing for spine surgery in New Jersey:

Stay active pre-surgery

Back pain is not fun, and you might want to rest for the days leading up to your spine surgery, but this is not what you should be doing at all! It’s important to stay active, within your own limits. After surgery, you may not have the option to get up and move around comfortably. Plus, keeping a healthy weight before surgery could result in a speedier recovery. It’s important to speak with your doctor about how to stay active, so they can suggest exercises tailored to your individual condition.

Educate yourself

A big part of being prepared is being educated. Read up on your procedure, find the latest medical research, and learn about previous patients’ experiences. This type of research is just as important as the research you did to find your spine surgery doctor. Knowing what to expect will leave you feeling more confident.

Lay off the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)

You should not be taking NSAIDs like ibuprofen or aspirin for the week leading up to your surgery. NSAIDs can thin your blood, which raises your risk of problems during surgery. It’s important to tell your doctor about any other medication you’re taking beforehand. When experiencing back pain before surgery, it may be difficult to not pop a painkiller, but there are other ways you can manage pain:

  • Cold and heat pads
  • Exercise
  • Yoga
  • Massages

Find family or friends to help you in recovery

Recovery from spine surgery is not going to be easy unless you have some help. Things as simple as cooking a meal or getting up to grab the remote may be extremely difficult and painful post-surgery. A few helpful family members can make all the difference for a smooth and speedy recovery.

Prepare your home

Start thinking about how you can make your recovery experience more comfortable.

  • A cane or walker may be necessary for you to get around your house
  • Place your frequently used items in a convenient location within reach so you don’t have to strain
  • Purchase a toilet seat riser if you anticipate difficulty getting on and off the toilet
  • Find comfy slip-on shoes to avoid bending down
  • For hard to reach items, use a grabber or reacher

Pre and post-surgery preparation is crucial for your peace-of-mind and for the speediest recovery. The New Jersey spine doctors at Coastal Spine are here to make sure your spine surgery experience is as smooth as possible. If you’d like a second opinion about your spine condition, Schedule an appointment to see us now!