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-   -   Things you CAN do with a fused spine (http://www.scoliosis-support.org/showthread.php?t=9586)

tonibunny 2nd March 2010 12:44 PM

Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Hi everyone,

Very often, we have people coming to SSO who are worried that their life will be terribly limited after they've had a spinal fusion. I know we have a lot of very fit and active people here on the forum, so I thought I'd start this thread to show what people CAN do despite having fused spines :) Please join in if you'd like to! All info is optional, so it doesn't matter if you don't want to put your age or if you don't know the sort of metalwork you have. Also, please don't use this thread to post what you cannot do; this thread is to focus solely on what you can do.

I'll start!

My age: 34
My fusion length: T1-L4
My instrumentation: Harrington Rod T1-L3, Zielke L1-L3, Pedicle screws L3-L4
Things I enjoy doing: long distance cycle rides, climbing mountains, scrambling around under hedges and climbing over gates and stiles looking for geocaches. In my early 20s I went clubbing three times a week. I can also do sit-ups despite my long fusion - you tend to pull using your abdominal muscles rather than bending your back, which is better for you anyway, and it helps if you use a decline bench.

titch 2nd March 2010 01:20 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
I'm quite limited in what I can do now, but that's not really to do with the fact I've got a fusion - when I eventually get as far as a revision surgery which fuses me to the sacrum, I expect to be back to being considerably more active and able again.

My original surgery was:
Fusion length: T10-L2
Instrumentation: anterior rod T12-L2, Hartshill rectangle T10-L2

After recovering from this, I used to routinely walk up to 100 miles per week (and yes, I do mean 100!), clambered all over cliffs and up hills and over rock formations round Cornwall, and took up body building. I also played quite a bit of badminton when I had the chance.

After my revision surgery which helped to re-balance my spine (due to an imbalance which does not occur with modern surgeries done by properly trained specialists), I was able to return to body building for a while. I've got issues now, but that's still stuff related to the original surgery which was done by a non-specialist rather than being related to being fused in general.

Rodsrme 2nd March 2010 03:37 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
2 years post surgery I am finally getting a life back. ;)


My fusion length: T5 - T11
My instrumentation: 2 stainless steel rods 7 inches long, 3 hooks, and 9 pedicle screws.

I am doing, hiking, pleasure horseback riding, competing horseback riding (barrel racing, reining/cutting). Swimming (laps... latest time was 18 seconds for one long lap!) I do all kinds of stuff.. pretty much like normal. :D

BeckyH 2nd March 2010 03:52 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
fusion length: T11-L3
instrumentation: synergy i think? not sure to be honest.
age: almost 23, had surgery aged 18

activities: horse riding (including jumping), swimming, skiing (went for the first time 18 months after surgery) and my job/lifestyle dictates that i have to be on my feet for 12+ hours at a time, doing all sorts of lifting and stand-building because i'm an event manager. i do fun stuff sometimes too :D

mark 2nd March 2010 03:59 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Age 39

Posterior / anterior release for Scueremanns kyphosis

Operated on at the age of 39, now 3 months post op (just over)

Fused T1 to L4 2 titanium rods, don't know how may pedicle screws but i think its a lot

Things i am now doing - Taking the dog out for a walk, driving, shopping, itching to get back into the mountains cause i miss my walking in the mountains

Dancerr.. 2nd March 2010 05:38 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Age: 15
Fused: T5-L1

Activities: There are plenty of things i like doing, erm.. swimming, dancing, walking, bit of gymnastics, shopping - dragging mum round the shops :p basically back to normal :)

461992 3rd March 2010 08:22 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Age: 15
Fused: T3-L5, 1 year 2 months post op

Well, I can paint my toe-nails! Very important! I can shop, walk, swim. I can't really run, I was always slow though!

Jen 3rd March 2010 09:10 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
I went snorkelling at 6 months and at about 8-9 months I started back kayaking. No problems. Swimming on my front I find awkward but swimming on my back is the same as pre-op.

Fast walking, gardening, no problem. Have been told no running or lifting heavy loads that might put stress on the vertebra above my fusion.

BeckyH 3rd March 2010 09:13 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 461992 (Post 152665)
Age: 15
Fused: T3-L5, 1 year 2 months post op

Well, I can paint my toe-nails! Very important! I can shop, walk, swim. I can't really run, I was always slow though!

i forgot toenail painting! that's one of those basic things which i totally take for granted but yes, i too can still touch my toes, cut my nails etc. people are always surprised by that.

tonibunny 3rd March 2010 09:34 PM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Jen! Kayaking is something I'd love to try, I have friends who are instructors. I worried that I might have trouble flipping myself up again when I capsized though. Are you still able to do that despite being fused to the pelvis?

Joy 4th March 2010 01:59 AM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Age: 20, 7 years post-op
Instrumentation: CD
Fusion: T2-L1
Activities: Since surgery, I have show-jumped, sailed, played soccer, run cross-country, travelled, worked outdoors, waitressed, and lots of other things. I can do pretty much whatever I want. I can also bend over and touch my toes.

Jen 4th March 2010 02:52 AM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by tonibunny (Post 152681)
Jen! Kayaking is something I'd love to try, I have friends who are instructors. I worried that I might have trouble flipping myself up again when I capsized though. Are you still able to do that despite being fused to the pelvis?

Tonibunny, so far I have not capsized. I did prior to surgery and was able to flip the kayak back up and clamber in. I am fairly sure I would not be able to do that now. My partner insists I wear a life jacket now and we only use the double kayak, so if we flip, I head for shore, while he takes care of the kayak. We don't sea-kayak, only rivers and lakes, for which we're spoilt for choice, around here. It's not difficult to kayak, and being fused seems to have made no difference. I'd definitely recommend it. It's a great pastime!

Rodsrme 4th March 2010 03:26 AM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Joy (Post 152697)
Age: 20, 7 years post-op
Instrumentation: CD
Fusion: T2-L1
Activities: Since surgery, I have show-jumped, sailed, played soccer, run cross-country, travelled, worked outdoors, waitressed, and lots of other things. I can do pretty much whatever I want. I can also bend over and touch my toes.

YOU CAN BEND AND TOUCH YOUR TOES!?!?! You have more fusion than me and I can't! Well I can if I bend at the knee! haha ;)

Running.. ya forgot running.. I can do that.
Swimming is completely the same.. though I find I can't float anymore.. I sink. hahhaa :D

Sparkles 4th March 2010 04:56 AM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
Hiya i dont mind telling my age its 38 oh it doesnt sound so bad if i say it quickly!:D any way i have a fused spine obviously or i wouldnt be on this forum, i had mine done in 19.86 at the age of 14 and because of problems with a few vertabraes (not sure if i spelt right!)i have been fused in an "S" shape but before surgery i was a "Z"shape,

i have a Harrington rod fitted too and was told i would be left with a very stiff back for life,and yes its stiff but i cope as many of us do we just adapt,as for things i can do i can just about manage a short ride on my bike not far but its an achievment i suppose,

walk for longer than i used to as i feel the more walking the easier it gets,dance aswell if no twisting oh did i mention put my own footwear on! its a big deal to me that i have learnt to manage it!,

so having our spine fused doesnt mean the end for us it means a start of a different life with some limits.

magnumlady 4th March 2010 09:34 AM

Re: Things you CAN do with a fused spine
 
What great posts. I will have to get Jono to read this :D


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