What to expect after spinal stenosis surgery

How long does it take to recover from spinal stenosis surgery?

Typically 4-6 weeks after surgery, you can return to regular movements and life. Full results from pain relief might take up to 6 months. During this time, it is essential to undergo outpatient physical therapy sessions to learn how to move correctly.

What is the success rate of surgery for spinal stenosis?

Successful results of surgery were achieved in 86.7% of patients with lumbar stenosis, 77.6% of patients with lumbar stenosis with herniated disc, and 63.6% of patients with lateral recess stenosis (Fig. 1 center). Successful results of surgery for lumbar stenosis declined to 69.6% by 1 year postoperatively.

How long does it take to fully recover from a laminectomy?

After a minor (decompressive) laminectomy, you can usually able do desk work and light housekeeping within a few days to a few weeks. If you also had spinal fusion, your recovery time will likely be longer, 2-4 months. You may not be able to lift and bend for 2-3 months.

Does surgery help spinal stenosis?

The goals of surgery include relieving the pressure on your spinal cord or nerve roots by creating more space within the spinal canal. Surgery to decompress the area of stenosis is the most definitive way to try to resolve symptoms of spinal stenosis.

How long does it take to walk after spinal surgery?

Take only short walks for the first 2 weeks after surgery. After that, you may slowly increase how far you walk. You may go up or down stairs once a day for the first 1 or 2 weeks, if it does not cause much pain or discomfort.

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What happens if you let spinal stenosis go untreated?

It occurs from spinal stenosis that causes pressure on the spinal cord. If untreated, this can lead to significant and permanent nerve damage including paralysis and death. Symptoms may affect your gait and balance, dexterity, grip strength and bowel or bladder function.

Will spinal stenosis cripple you?

When spinal stenosis compresses the spinal cord in the neck, symptoms can be much more serious, including crippling muscle weakness in the arms and legs or even paralysis. It may be a common problem, but spinal stenosis often goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.

What activities should be avoided with spinal stenosis?

The above activities are on the smooth and repetitive end of the exercise spectrum. Patients may have less pain by avoiding the higher impact exercise such as jogging, avoiding contact sports, and avoiding long periods of standing or walking. In This Article: Living with Lumbar Spinal Stenosis.

What is severe spinal stenosis?

Spinal stenosis (or narrowing) is a common condition that occurs when the small spinal canal, which contains the nerve roots and spinal cord, becomes compressed. This causes a “pinching” of the spinal cord and/or nerve roots, which leads to pain, cramping, weakness or numbness.

Is a recliner good after back surgery?

Recliners can help ease pressure on your lower back, and sitting on something cushioned, such as an inflatable donut pillow or hemorrhoid pillow, can make sitting more tolerable. If you’re having extensive surgery, you may want to consider renting an adjustable bed for the postoperative recovery period.

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How successful is laminectomy surgery?

Laminectomy enlarges your spinal canal to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerves, and has about an 80 percent success rate at improving walking abilities. In some cases, surgeons also perform spinal fusions, connecting two or more bones in the back, to help stabilize the spine.

Do you need physical therapy after a laminectomy?

If you have had a lumbar laminectomy and discectomy to help you treat your sciatica, you may benefit from physical therapy after surgery. Your physical therapist can work with you to help you improve your overall mobility so you can quickly and safely return to your normal activity and function.

What causes spinal stenosis to flare up?

Usually, spinal stenosis is caused by a gradual degenerative process (arthritis) in the lower spine. Bone spurs, inflammation, and malalignment can cause the narrowing around the nerves. Typical treatment of spinal stenosis starts with simple steps, including physical therapy, medications, and rest.

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