What To Expect During Recovery From Kyphoplasty

Posted on: 3 September 2015

Kyphoplasty is a surgical procedure used to repair compression fractures in the vertebrae of the spine by using a special type of cement. Compared to other forms of back and spine surgery, kyphoplasty is less invasive and does not have the long recovery periods common with more complex back surgeries. If you are undergoing kyphoplasty, you can expect the following during your recovery:

Post-Surgery Hospitalization

In most cases, patients do not have to stay overnight in the hospital following kyphoplasty. You will most likely spend several hours in a recovery room where you will be monitored by a nurse. When most of the effects of anesthesia have worn off and you have stable vital signs, you will be able to go home. Your surgeon will give you detailed discharge directions, and you should follow them carefully. As with almost all surgeries that require general anesthesia, you will need to have someone pick you up from the hospital as it won't be safe for you to drive.

Managing Pain

When you are discharged from the hospital your doctor will probably give you a prescription for pain killers to be used in the days after your surgery. Take them as prescribed to properly manage your pain. Every patient is different, but after a few days you will most likely be able to manage any discomfort that you are feeling by taking over-the-counter pain medications. If you are in extreme pain a few days after surgery, consult your doctor to make sure that you are not experiencing post-operation complications.

Restricted Activities

It is in your best interest to rest as much as possible in the days following your surgery so your back can heal properly. In general, patients who undergo kyphoplasty may resume regular activities as soon as they feel well enough to do so. The exception is heavy lifting and driving; you may be restricted from these activities for several weeks as your back fully heals. Your doctor will clear you for driving and heavy lifting at a follow up appointment when he or she feels that your back has healed enough to resume these activities.

Physical Therapy

Most patients are prescribed physical therapy following kyphoplasty. The goal of physical therapy in this case is to strengthen the back muscles so they can better support the vertebrae of the spine. The amount of physical therapy that you will need depends on the condition of your back muscles prior to surgery.

To learn more about the procedure, contact an office such as Southwest Florida Neurosurgical Associates.