As soon as your doctor tells you that you need spine surgery, you may experience a significant rush of panic, fear, and uncertainty.
There is no question that spine surgery is a serious endeavor. If all conservative measures have failed and you are still in pain, surgery may be the only option to regain the pain-free life you once enjoyed. Taking the initiative to learn as much as you can about your specific condition, the treatment options available, and your surgeon may help to alleviate your concerns.
The following are some helpful tips to overcome your fears about spine surgery:
Research Treatment Options
Not all surgical procedures are the same. In fact, individual surgeons often differ slightly in their surgical approach. Ask if your procedure will be open or minimally invasive. Ask if there are other options available, but not offered by your doctor. Surgical options tend to vary by location, as certain training and fellowships in each geographic region may focus on different techniques or teach more traditional methods. Traveling to a spine surgeon who specializes in treating your condition may be your best option.
Form a Bond With Your Surgeon
You must trust your surgeon before agreeing to surgery. Develop this trust by asking specific questions. Ask about your surgeon’s individual success with past spinal surgeries, complication rates, and typical recovery time. Ask how many procedures your surgeon has performed that are similar to the surgery proposed for your condition. Ask lots of questions. The more you know, the more you’ll be able to relax and focus on healing.
Be Prepared for Surgery
Properly preparing for surgery is critical to a successful outcome. Understanding what to expect from presurgical testing to postoperative recovery will help you make healthy decisions before and after your surgery. Eliminating certain medications, improving your nutrition, maintaining proper hydration, and even participating in light exercise can minimize complications and improve recovery times.
Understand the Recovery Process
Many patients express concerns about life after surgery. How bad will the pain be? How quickly can I resume my normal life? When will I be able to participate in sports again? Ask your doctor these questions BEFORE surgery. You should be given a personalized plan which includes functional mobility exercises and physical therapy to help you reach your goals.
Informed decisions, meticulous planning, and adequate preparation for surgery can decrease complication rates and improve your recovery time. When you combine these factors with the right procedure and the best surgeon for your condition, you can relax and look forward to getting your life back.
Our procedures offer the relief you need to get your life back. We are happy to answer any questions, assist you with obtaining a copy of your MRI, or simply discuss your personal spine care needs.