Following surgery, the healing process may take several months before the patient is completely rehabilitated. During this time, it’s imperative the spine is kept in proper alignment. To help stabilize the spine, surgeons will often use metallic screws, rods and plates. Patients will use external bracing, like a back brace, to help facilitate healing.
Although healing takes several months, the fusion process may last six to 12 months following surgery. Limiting heavy activity and performing physical therapy may also help speed the process. Even though healing can take several months, symptoms gradually improve within the timeline. As patients regain strength, they will be able to slowly increase activity level.
It is imperative that patients complete physical therapy as designated by a spine surgeon to help ensure the best possible outcome from a spinal fusion procedure.