Following a laminectomy, patients go to a postoperative recovery area, are discharged from the hospital immediately or within days and may experience significant pain for days following the procedure, according to WebMD. Total recovery time ranges from weeks to months, depending on factors such as the extent of the laminectomy.
The pain immediately after a laminectomy can be quite intense, and patients are typically prescribed narcotic pain medications for one to two weeks after surgery, WebMD explains. After the pain subsides and the narcotics are no longer necessary, doctors usually approve patients to resume driving for short distances. Patients who undergo minor laminectomy procedures can expect to resume most activities within weeks; however, recovery time can be significantly longer for spinal fusion patients.