For Edward, the pain was less than he anticipated. Recovery time for a fusion surgery is very different than for a microdisectomy. Like other patients, he tried as quickly as possible to stop using pain meds. Keeping to a strict walking schedule, as prescribed by his surgeon, was incredibly important for Edward. He is looking forward to starting up physical therapy again.
After the two level fusion, I was in the hospital for two nights. Now, think about what that was many years ago, you'd have been in there for weeks or months. So yeah, it's pretty incredible. You're up walking the same day of the surgery. Hard to believe that you're up, they want you kind of getting up and moving around quickly. You're out of the hospital going home in two days. Just pretty amazing and I had the surgery just over two months ago and I will tell you that the-the changes are significant.
The stability’s the biggest change. All of a sudden I feel as if everything's kind of back together. You're on a lot of medication, but certainly once the medication starts to fade, you're definitely in pain. I'm not sure if it's more from the surgery itself, or if from the actual back pain. And I will tell you that most people are trying to get off the pain medication as quickly as you can but the pain level was a lot lower level than what I would've expected. The micro discectomy nowadays is outpatient surgery. For a lot of people they see immediate relief. I did when I had my first one. With a two level fusion it was a little bit different in terms of the time to get over the whole thing.
Post surgery's you know, real important. They want you to you know, get back into your normal life to a certain extent. Certainly start walking a lot, you know, you're managing your pain as best you can, trying to follow the directions that the doctors have given you. But I got myself in a pretty good walking schedule. I was taking three walks a day. They graduate from around the block to around the park and pretty soon, you know, you're taking a couple mile walks a couple weeks after surgery. They remind you to do not do any of what they call the BLT's, no bending, lifting or twisting, which is pretty good advice. Walking's a definitely a big part of it. Physical therapy was just approved yesterday and I start next week. In terms of physical therapy, again I'm going back to the same doctor that I went to before.
We were midway through it when we decided that we needed to kind of push the reset button. So I know at least the first half of what we're going to be doing, I’m anxious to get back. So it'll be two months after my actual two level fusion surgery, that I'll start my physical therapy in earnest next week. Deciding to have surgery's a big decision, and unfortunately I've had to do it a few times. But, you really have to decide on it as a family and you know, the kind of restrictions that you're gonna have at least temporarily. The potential, you know, side effects that you may have to deal with. I think you kind of have to weigh that against what the upside might be.
And for a lot of people I think going through that, f-regardless of the types of surgery. You have to decide whether or not that that type of lifestyle is gonna be something that you can live with. And for me it wasn't. We know the risks, we tried to do the best job we could with exploring the best options that were out there and then just trying to go in there and have a positive attitude. You know, I think that the best thing they said was just you know let your body decide for you, you know, and decide when you're able to do different things.