How to Prepare for Spine Surgery

Surgeons working over a patient

With an estimated 65 million people suffering from back pain in the U.S., many will ultimately seek relief using spine surgery. A spine surgery is a major surgery that will require some downtime, healing and possible retreatment if the first intervention is unsuccessful. Preparing for it mentally and physically will be important during the recovery process. The following tips can help you best prepare for your forthcoming surgery.

Take Notes

Since it would be impossible to remember all information that you will be given at your appointment, take some important notes. Read the packet that your doctor provides to you and make sure you understand it. Consider bringing a friend or family member along with to help you take notes and to better understand the procedure, its risks and potential gains.

Prepare for the Surgery

Your doctor will provide you with detailed information that you should adhere to before you have your surgery. Things like what you can and cannot eat before the surgery, issues related to smoking before your surgery, and other associated preparations that should be carefully studied and adhered to.

Planning for Time Off Work

There will be some downtime associated with your surgery. Assure that you are well prepared to take any necessary time off from work. Recruit a friend or family member to help you get your medications filled and to aid you in the immediate recovery process.

During the Surgery

Once the time of your surgery arrives, it can be emotional and stressful. Make sure you have a group of friends and family members to support you at this time. Arrange for transportation to and from the surgeon’s, and make sure that you have the necessary equipment you’ll need afterwards.


Most back surgery will require a few days of hospitalization. You will also generally need to undergo rehabilitation as well. Upon returning home, you will require some bed rest and will need to accommodate for pets and traversing your home while dealing with limited range of motion.