Does scoliosis surgery get rid of pain

Does scoliosis surgery get rid of pain?

Does scoliosis surgery get rid of pain?

I get asked this a lot and the answer, for me, is yes and no.
People don’t seem to understand why I am still in pain after I’ve had scoliosis surgery. I think they think that as my surgery was nearly two years ago that I should be ‘recovered’ and back to normal now – whatever that is.
The truth is, that before my surgery my pain was much, much worse and I was so much more uncomfortable.

Before surgery, the pressure of my spinal curvature on my muscles gave me terrible muscle spasms/knots. Nothing would get rid of them, I had massages every few weeks, tried acupuncture, physiotherapy, heat therapy, Pilates and swimming.

It just felt like a constant intense pressure – kind of like my spine was about to snap. I also found it hard to sit unsupported e.g like on a bench/stool as I’d get pain/pins and needles in my back. Plus,I was always so uncomfortable on pretty much EVERY chair due to my rib hump.


A different kind of pain…

As soon as I woke up from surgery I knew straight away that the pain I had before surgery was completely gone. I can’t begin to tell you what a relief that was after years and years of it. My muscle knots went overnight!

My back felt supported for the first time, like I had an internal brace and I could sit unsupported comfortably for the first time. It was so amazing.

I was told by my surgeon that this surgery is not guaranteed to get rid of pain and that I could end up with a different type of pain post surgery and he was right.

I didn’t have the surgery to get rid of my pain but to stop further progression of my curves so this didn’t really bother me.


What is my pain like post scoliosis surgery?

The pain I get now post surgery is mostly lower back pain that I get after a long day at work/being on my feet for a while and is relieved instantly by lying down. 

I guess this is due to pressure on the unfused discs in my spine as they have to take the pressure that my whole spine used to take now that it’s fused. I’m currently trying to strengthen my core muscles at the gym to try and take the pressure off and I have noticed a difference since starting my exercising.

The main problem I have now is trouble getting comfortable. I’m constantly uncomfortable and I think this is because of the rods in my back my posture is constantly ‘straight’ so I cannot bend my back to mould it to chairs such as sofas as others would do. 

If I’m sat straight upright I’m usually comfortable but the problem is that most chairs don’t allow you to sit straight very easily so I’m always hogging all the cushions in the house in a desperate bid to get myself sat in a ‘straight’ position!


UPDATE

I’m now 7 years post op (where does the time go?!) and I would say my pain now is similar to how I described it in this post. The only difference now, 7 years later, is that it’s much easier to get comfortable and my back is much more flexible than it was. I remember what it was like feeling uncomfortable all the time, but I’m happy to say that I think this was mostly down to being in recovery and that, over time, this did improve.

Louise X


If you’ve had scoliosis surgery, how has it affected your pain? Let me know by commenting below 🙂

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Does scoliosis surgery get rid of pain?

It’s Snow Joke…

There are heavy snow warnings across the UK at the moment, below freezing temperatures and lots of ice. We’ve had a bit of snow where I live although what concerns me more are the slippy pavements – especially when they’re not gritted.
I know a lot of people get excited by the snow, it looks so pretty blah blah blah.

I personally HATE the snow and dread winter every year because the cold weather does just not agree with my back. For me it feels dangerous and the cold just causes me extra pain.

Ever since I had the rods put in the cold seems to find it’s way into my metalwork and my back muscles just stiffen up like a tight corset, making it difficult to walk very fast and making my pain a lot worse than usual. 

I’m also very nervous about walking on the ice since my surgery as I’m terrified of slipping over and doing damage to my fusion, damaging the metalwork and causing myself more pain. 

I know I’m stronger than I think, but I feel like a frail old lady out there on the ice, people don’t realise how bad a fall could be for me though because I’m young and look “normal.”

Also, I tend to tense up more when I walk on the ice now as I’m so scared of slipping, which makes it 10x worse!

It was worse last winter as I was only 6 months out of surgery and I knew that I wouldn’t be fully fused yet so a bad fall could have caused serious damage.

I think I will be like this now every winter, I just dread it and wish it never snowed. Well, so long as I don’t have to go out in it.

I really think I need to live somewhere hot and sunnyor get some of these, safety first!

Ice Grippers:

Haircuts post scoliosis surgery: A pain in the neck (literally!)

So I had my hair done this weekend and it reminded me that having my hair cut is one thing that I absoltuely hate doing post scoliosis surgery, that and shaving my legs. I try to put it off for as long as possible but some things are just unavoidable.

The problem is that going to the hairdressers is now a completely different experience from pre-surgery, and not an enjoyable one at that. This is mainly because I can’t bend my back to slouch into the hairdresser’s chair so I end up perching on the end of the chair sitting straight up or leaning back with my shoulder’s touching the top of the chair and a huge gap between my lower back and the back of the chair! It’s safe to say that sitting this way for a fair few hours is no fun.
The worst part is leaning back to have my hair washed, it’s sooo uncomfortable as I can’t mould my back to the chair and end up again with the huge gap between my lower back and the back of the chair. I used to enjoy having my hair washed at the hairdressers but now I just want them to hurry up and get on with it so I can get out of that horrible seat.

It’s probably my own fault for having foils that take hours but hey beauty is pain and I may have a sore back after visiting the hairdressers post surgery but at least my hair looks good! 😉

Next time I’ll take a cushion…