The unfortunate reality is that recovering from back or spinal surgery is never a fun or easy process. There’s bound to be a certain level of discomfort and physical limitation while your body heals and you work your way back to normal activity levels. It’s important that you are prepared to recognize the difference between the normal discomfort that’s to be expected after back surgery and signs that may indicate something really is wrong. Be on the lookout for these signals that you need to call your doctor and see how MedWell Solutions can simplify that process for you.
Persistent Numbness or Tingling
Numbness, “pins and needles” sensations or tingling in the legs is a possible sign that nerve damage has occurred due to spinal surgery. Just like anyone else, surgical patients can have a limb fall asleep temporarily due to sitting in an unusual position or compressing a vein, but if the feeling persists, this is cause for concern. If you notice numbness or tingling, try to move the affected limb and wait a little while to see if it returns to normal. The feeling should start to return within a few minutes. If numbness doesn’t go away, contact your doctor.
Loss of Bladder or Bowel Control
While the conversation might cause embarrassment, if you experience incontinence after back surgery, you should let your doctor know right away. This could be a sign that a nerve was compressed or otherwise compromised during the procedure. Loss of bladder or bowel control after surgery is not a common complication of surgery, but it can be a serious one and should not be ignored.
Signs of Infection at Surgical Site
If your surgical site becomes red, inflamed, or tender, it is possible you have an infection and you should seek medical attention. It’s normal for a surgical wound to cause a little pain within the first few days, but if it becomes increasingly more painful or is red and puffy, something could be wrong. It’s better to be safe than sorry and have a doctor examine the site before the possible infection is able to progress. Drainage from the wound is also a potential warning.
Fever Above 101
A high fever is also a sign of a possible infection. For the most accurate results, take your temperature with an oral thermometer. Fever caused by infection may be accompanied by shaking and chills. It’s always possible you had the bad luck to come down with something.
Leg Swelling or Pain
Swelling and pain in the legs can be a sign of a blood clot. If this is the case, the pain will probably be localized to the calf, ankle, or foot. The area may be red or tender to the touch. Blood clots can cause serious problems if they travel to the brain or lungs, so take any possible symptom very seriously and call your doctor without delay.
Find the Right DFW Spinal Surgeon
Most likely, none of these symptoms will occur, and your recovery process will be smooth sailing. The majority of patients do not experience the problems described above, but it’s important to know what potential warning signs to be on the lookout for after back surgery. With CareScriptions, members will no longer feel hesitation to call their doctor. CareScriptions takes care of the reporting for you with a click of a button.
To speak with a professional about identifying practitioners who can help you maintain your back, neck, and spine health, contact MedWell Solutions today.