I’m using the term “lumbar ouchies” to describe the minor type of persistent lumbar pain that’s so minor you know it’s not an injury of concern. Yet, there is definitely a pain (inflammation, etc.) that’s lingering for days. And, it’s not pleasant. You’d most definitely be glad if it were to go bye-bye. But, ultimately, it’s not so bad and certainly nothing compared to the nightmare pain level you experienced before the surgery.

Taking time off from the gym and exercise in general

So, today’s October 11, 2021…and, on October 6, 2021 I finally said, “Okay, we’re taking off from the gym etc. for a little bit here to let the inflammation and pain ouchies settle down.”

So, that’s what I’ve been doing. I woke up today and the ouchies are still sort of ouching along.

And, what I’ve learned is that once in a while…your body will tell you when…it’s a good practice to take a week or so…or a couple days…whatever…listen to your body…but, it’s good to take some time off from the gym and exercise and strenuous stuff once in a bit. This is MY experience with spinal fusion rehab. Your mileage may vary. But, I do think this is probably safe, universal advice.

The advice being that if you’re feeling a little ouchie in the back or knees or whatever…and, your energy’s getting low and you’ve been exercising on a regular basis for a while and your body’s kind of telling you to chill: then, yes…chill for a bit. Take some time off.

This is NOT the first time I’ve been through this!

I’ve been through these minor persistent “ouchies” a number of times during this rehab

Over the past 14 months since surgery I’ve gone through this at least—I don’t know—let’s say around seven or eight times.

To clarify, the first couple months post-surgery was just extreme/brutal pain. It wasn’t low-level “ouchies.” It was fucking horror.

After the horrific post-surgery pain subsided a bit…that took a good two months…there have been seven or eight times when things flared-up and the ouchies set in for a week or two.

Prednisone has helped on a few occasions with post-surgery inflammatory type pain

On a few occasions, the surgeon prescribed a course of Prednisone: and, that stuff works for me! I try to avoid it because it’s a steroid that ultimately lowers your immune system. And, by my layperson way of thinking…with everything going on in the world virus-wise…it doesn’t seem like a good time to go through life with a lowered immune system.

I’m not saying I’m a doctor! It just seems to make sense.

It’s all part of my healing process

Anyway, part of why I’m making this post is because somebody might see it who’s had a spinal fusion surgery. And, maybe that person is having some minor, low-level pain. And, maybe they’re worried that they somehow damaged their fusion and that their life in general is now totally fucked.

This is a worry that’s caused me considerable grief and lost sleep. I’m being honest. I live with a sense of terror that something goes wrong with this fusion. I know what it’s like to be scared by the pain and feeling that your life’s now ruined.

And what I’m saying is that may not be the case. I don’t know you. I’m not your doctor. But, I’m saying that there have been quite a few times when my pain has flared-up for days or even weeks and it wasn’t because of fusion damage or injury. It was just part of the healing process in my case. And, I just had the fresh X-ray and exam this past week. So, I know with great certainty that the fusion is fine.