Some issues need to be taken into consideration for a trouble-free recovery period after herniated disc and spine surgeries performed as a result of back and spine disorders.
Here are the important issues to consider after herniated disc and spine surgeries:
After being discharged from the hospital after the surgery, we recommend bed rest for the first 1 week to allow the superficial (visible through the skin) wound to heal. During this period, you can get up 5-6 times a day for your basic needs (eating, toilet, etc.) and sit on a chair and eat your meal.
You do not need to use a corset unless your doctor recommends it. Under normal circumstances, we do not recommend corsets as they will cause laziness and weaken the waist and back muscles. However, if necessary, your doctor will indicate how and for how long you will use the type of corset that is suitable for you. When necessary, wear your corset only while sitting or standing, do not wear it while in bed.
It is sufficient to apply the dressing to the wound every other day for the first week, unless your doctor states otherwise. It is enough to pour 10% povidone (Betadine, Baticon, etc.) on a sterile sponge or cotton, apply it to the stitched area without pressing it, cover it with a sterile sponge and cover the ventilated surface with a plaster or ready-made self-adhesive sterile wound pads that you can find in pharmacies. It is important that no water gets into the wound or it becomes infected with germs. If you sweat in the summer, we recommend that you change your dressing more frequently. If there is redness or discharge at the wound site, be sure to inform your doctor. Don’t worry, there may be tingling, numbness, stiffness, or even slight swelling at the surgery site.
Starting from the first day after the surgery, you can bathe the wound with a waterproof dressing and take a shower. It is important that water does not touch the wound area in terms of infection. After bathing, change your dressing and cover it with a normal dressing system. After 1 week to 10 days, after the wound is closed, you can take an open shower, but do not rub the wound area, if there is, wait for the scabs to fall off on their own.
Cigarettes – Alcohol
Substances harmful to health should not be used during the wound healing period. They negatively affect wound healing. Smoking is one of the causes of hernia formation as it damages the intervertebral disc structure.
You can lie on your back or on your side in bed. When getting out of bed, you should first turn on your side, stretch your legs over the edge of the bed, and then get into a sitting position from the side, using your hands to support the bed, and then stand up. While lying down, the patient should first sit on the edge of the bed, lie on his/her side with the support of the arms, and then turn onto his/her back by pulling the legs. In this way, you can lie down and get up without straining your waist and spine.
The healing process of the superficial wound, that is, the stitches, after the surgery is on average 1 week. The healing process of a deep wound, that is, the area in the spine area, takes an average of 1 month. For this reason, you need to make an appointment with your doctor for your first check-up within 1 week-10 days after the surgery and for your second check in the 1st month. Your examinations after 3 months and 1 year are important in terms of evaluating the strength of your lower back muscles and your sensory functions.
There is no harm in going home sitting in the vehicle after you are discharged. For a long trip, it is beneficial to take at least 1 week and 10 days. If you need to make such a trip, be sure to consult your doctor. On long journeys, placing a cushion behind your waist on the seat may help you feel more comfortable. Short stretching movements during breaks will reduce muscle pain. If you will be driving the car.
Walking and Exercise
You can start short walks 1 week and 10 days after discharge. Walking distance can be gradually increased. However, if you get tired, rest and do not push yourself.
Do the exercises regularly that your doctor will recommend at your first check-up. These exercises are important to strengthen your waist muscles and prevent muscle pain. In fact, doing these exercises regularly as a part of your life will play an important role in preventing new hernias and lower back pain.