What Is the Estimated Recovery Time for Lower Back Surgery?


Quick Answer

Following lower back surgery, most patients stay in the hospital for several days until able to walk, according to SpineUniverse. Home recovery time depends on the patient's adherence to instructions. Recovery time varies depending on the procedure as well, with spinal fusion recovery taking longer than disc replacement, notes WebMD.

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Spinal surgery causes discomfort that is considered normal, while more severe pain indicates the patient should slow down, get plenty of rest, and not sit or stand for long periods of time, states SpineUniverse. For faster healing it is important to keep the body moving gently and take frequent naps. Slow, deliberate movements and short walks aid in recovery while warm showers help alleviate back pain. Sleeping with a pillow between the knees on the side assists in maintaining spinal alignment.

A low-impact exercise routine can speed up recovery while building strength and muscle tone, notes SpineUniverse. Since physical activity is reduced, it is important to watch caloric intake during this period of healing. Moving slowly and deliberately, such as using the knees to bend over rather than the back, is helpful too. During the post-operative checkup, the physician evaluates the patient's progress and advises when he can safely resume normal activities.

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