Ricker, now that you have added a little more information about yourself that helps. You will have to stay out of car for awhile, reason being is you cannot afford to be involved in a fender bender after surgery. I feel certain you will be in a neck brace & many times drs will tell a patient even after being weaned from the brace to wear the collar when riding in a vehicle for a bit. This is to protect your neck. Once surgery is done on the spine a person should always just use common sense on activities, you don't ever want to compromise the surgery that has been done.
I again urge you to check out CP101 on the tips posted by members. Will you have someone at home with you after surgery? You should have someone with you & not be alone if it can be avoided. Do you have a recliner, I asked this before. Most people have some swallowing issues right after surgery, generally it goes away in a few weeks. Get yourself one of those grabbers/reachers, you squeeze the handle & it can pick up things up off the floor, like a sock or something along those lines. Very handy little gadget, Walmart & drug stores carry them.
You are not being neurotic at all, you are trying to be an informed patient. The biggest issue is the several weeks wait until the big day gets here. They will have you up & walking the day of your surgery.
A very dear friend of mine had a 3 level lumbar fusion in March of this year. She is 68 years old & has not ever had surgery. Not really physically active, but not a couch potato either. The dr told her that he may have to do a 4 level fusion it just depended on what he found inside. A 3 level is a lot for someone at that age. She found a top notch neurosurgeon & followed the post op instructions to the letter. By July she was down at the coast fishing off of a pier, lol. Since then, she has done a good deal of traveling. I am so thankful she has done so well. She said I won't lie, it was very painful & hard the first few weeks, but each day got a little better. She was smart enough to not to have unrealistic expectations. Lots of patience needed. All she was allowed to do was walk, sitting put too much stress on her spine.
Moderator in Chronic Pain & Psoriasis Forums