DO

  • Do use an ice pack/hot pack on your back as needed. You can do 20 minutes ice, 20 minutes heat and 20 minutes off.
  • Do call the office if you notice and redness, drainage, swelling at the incision site, severe back pain or a fever over 101.5.
  • Do call 911 if you require immediate medical attention and are unable to reach your physician.

DO NOT

  • Do not lift anything over 20 pounds after surgery, play any contact sports or activities that cause excessive loading or rotation to your spine (i.e.: tennis, bowling, golfing, lifting weights, etc.) until released by your surgeon.
  • Do not overdose on pain medication. Please take the medication as written on the directions on the label. You have been provided with prescriptions for pain medication and muscle relaxers only to be taken for symptoms such as moderate to severe neck pain or muscle spasm. Please follow the instructions by your surgeon regarding the use of these. All medication given will not completely relieve your pain but is designed to make it more tolerable.
  • If you are fitted with a cervical collar the day of surgery to wear for 6 weeks post operation, do not wear while in the shower or eating.
  • Do not soak the incision for 24 hours after surgery. Your incision is covered with steri strips which will curl and fall off in a week or so. You can get the incision wet in the shower.
  • Do not drive or operate heavy machinery the day of your surgery. A caregiver will need to be with you 24 hours.

DO

  • Do resume your previous diet if tolerated. You will have a sore throat for several days, this is normal. You may feel better eating soft foods such as ice cream, puddings, soups, etc for the first few days after surgery.
  • Do walk briskly at least 20 minutes twice daily.
  • Do work on your neck exercises for range of motion. Try 10 repetitions of flexion, extension, and left and right lateral rotation twice daily. The walking and neck exercises are designed to decrease the likelihood of muscle spasms in your neck.
  • Do remove the dressing covering your incision on the second day after your surgery. You will notice that under the dressing are Steri Strips. They will fall off in approximately 10 days.
  • Do shower after you remove the dressing.
  • Do resume your previous medications (except NSAIDS for six weeks)
  • Do call our office if you:
    • Develop a temperature greater than 101.5
    • Notice any redness, tenderness, swelling or drainage from your incision
    • Develop any sudden onset of severe neck pain, numbness, weakness in your extremities, experience incontinence or any progressive difficulty swallowing or breathing

DO NOT

  • Do not lift more than 20 pounds for six weeks. You may return to work in one week on a “light duty” status.
  • Do not soak the incision under the shower or in the tub for one week.
  • Do not take anticoagulants until three (3) days after your surgery.

DO

  • Do resume your previous diet if tolerated. You will have a sore throat for several days, this is normal. You may feel better eating soft foods such as ice cream, puddings, soups, etc for the first few days after surgery.
  • Do walk briskly at least 20 minutes twice daily.
  • Do cover the incision when you shower with a strip of the 2″ wide tape that we have provided. Remove the tape after the shower. You may leave the incision open to air.
  • Do shower after you remove the dressing.
  • Do resume your previous medications (except NSAIDS for six weeks)
  • Do call our office if you:
    • Develop a temperature greater than 101.5
    • Notice any redness, tenderness, swelling or drainage from your incision
    • Develop any sudden onset of severe neck pain, numbness, weakness in your extremities, experience incontinence or any progressive difficulty swallowing or breathing

DO NOT

  • Do not bend over, stoop or squat. This puts excess stress on the incision and the hardware in your back. Do not lift more than 20 pounds for six weeks. You may return to work in one week on a “light duty” status.
  • Do not soak the incision under the shower or in the tub for one week.
  • Do not take anticoagulants until three (3) days after your surgery.