Post-Op Information

Post-op Information for Spine Surgery

The information provided here is a guide to what is to be expected in the post-operative period. There may be a wide variation in what is expected after surgery. However, if there is a persistent severe problem it should always be referred back to Dr Spittaler’s rooms.

  • In general, the patient is able to get out of bed on the day of surgery.
  • The wound is usually closed with dissolving sutures.
  • The wound should not be soaked underwater for the first week after surgery. 
  • Usually, the patient can shower with a dressing and change to a dry cover afterwards. 
  • It should not be soaked uncovered in a bath or pool for the first three weeks.
  • Most patients will be seen by a physiotherapist, who will provide instructions on general activities and exercises.
  • You will be booked for a physio appointment two to three weeks post your operation.
  • In general patients should not drive for 2 weeks after surgery. Each individual case will vary so discuss this with Dr Spittaler.
  • It is usual and expected for there to be some pain related to the incision in the initial post-op period. 
  • In most cases, this will only require medication for a few days. It should then settle to an ache requiring only mild analgesics. 
  • If there has been pain before surgery, it is not uncommon for there still to be twinges of similar pain and this will generally settle with time. 
  • Similarly, episodes of pins and needles where there has previously been pain or numbness is quite common and in many cases is to be expected (unless severe).
  • If pain returns and is severe or numbness and pins and needles do not settle, then the patient should contact the rooms. 
  • If there are any problems with the wound, the patient should contact Dr Spittaler’s rooms in business hours, otherwise contact your GP or the nearest emergency department.

Each individual case will vary, so discuss your recovery and post-op care with Dr Spittaler.