Preparing Yourself for Surgery

If you’ve been suffering from back pain and choose our spine specialist in New Jersey for diagnosis and relief, you’ve come to the right place. In many cases we are able to help you recover through the use of conservative approaches like exercise, massage, medication, or some combination of all three.

In some cases, minimally invasive spine surgery may be required. This type of surgery represents a technological breakthrough as compared to traditional surgery, often allowing patients to walk out of the surgical facility on the same day as their procedure.

Though minimally invasive spine procedures involve much smaller incisions and faster recovery times, it is still a good idea to prepare yourself and your home I order to make sure that your transition into rehabilitation and recovery goes as smoothly as possible. Here are some suggestions that will make the days immediately after your surgery much easier for you.

  • In the days prior to your surgery, pay attention to the items that you use and reach for the most and put them close to where you plan to spend your recovery time.  That may be a comfortable chair that provides good support, or a nightstand next to your bed. If you will be mobile, it’s still a good idea to keep items at torso height so you don’t need to bend over to get pots and pans, books, etc.
  • Invest in a toilet riser. You don’t think about it from day to day, but when you sit down and lift yourself up from the toilet, you bend deeply and use several important muscles that support your spine. Not having to go as far down or push as far upwards will help avoid pain and stress.
  • If you’re a smoker, then stop. This is always good advice, but especially before and after undergoing surgery. Nicotine interferes with bone healing and increases the risk of infection.
  • Choose slip-on shoes instead of shoes that need to be tied or pulled on. Like using the toilet, you don’t realize the amount of bending, pulling and exertion involved in putting your shoes on and taking them off until you are recovering from back surgery.
  • Prepare some meals ahead of time. Your body needs good nutrition to help in its healing, but you may be too tired or unable to stand long enough to cook for yourself. Unless somebody else is helping you, prep and freeze a few meals that will be easy to defrost and heat up for the first several days or weeks until you’re feeling normal again.
  • Purchase a grabber. You will find this inexpensive tool will come in very handy when it comes time to pick something up off of the floor or to reach for something that is too high. The pinchers at the end of this long stick act just like your fingers, and will save you a lot of extra work.
  • Tell your surgeon about any medicines or supplements you are currently taking. They may ask you to discontinue them for the days prior to and immediately after the surgery if they might interfere with your procedure or healing. If that is the case, make sure that you follow your doctor’s orders and then resume taking them as soon as they say that it is safe to do so.

Knowing that you’ve taken steps to prepare for surgery will help take away a lot of your fear and anxiety. For more information or to set up an appointment to see our lumbar spine specialist, contact us today.

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