What factors can prevent my recovery after a spinal fusion procedure?

There are different factors that could hinder your recovery following spinal fusion. Your doctor will tell you more about them before and after the intervention.

Some of the aspects that impair or prolong a normal recovery after spinal fusion stem from health problems. In contrast, others are related to the patient’s lifestyle and can easily be averted.

The procedure modifies the movement of your spine as sections of it become immobilized. Consequently, your spine will function differently, and the stress of the fused vertebrae will fall on the adjacent areas.

Additional damage and pain can be avoided if you carefully follow the instructions of your medical specialist.

Factors that can delay recovery after a spinal fusion surgery

The healing process for this particular spinal procedure may take up to six months, or sometimes even longer.

A prolonged recovery time is influenced by:

  • obesity
  • osteoporosis
  • diabetes
  • chronic steroid use
  • malnutrition
  • prior back surgery
  • chronic illnesses

Other altering factors related to the patient’s lifestyle are:

  • smoking or using other nicotine products
  • not following the physical therapy program as recommended
  • performing strenuous movements like twisting or lifting weights

Disclaimer: We do not assume responsibility for the use of the provided information or its interpretation. Our efforts are towards providing current and reliable information; however these should not be considered, or used as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment.

Source: https://www.cedars-sinai.edu/Education/Medical-Library/