Anterior Cervical Decompression and Fusion

Wound Care

  • Keep incision clean and dry
    • Wash with soap and water, dry with towel
  • Do not remove paper steri-strips
  • Do not remove or cut blue sutures
  • Men may shave neck around area of paper steri-strips
  • Do not apply any creams, ointments, etc. to incision

General Instructions

  • Wear collar when out of bed as needed for comfort
  • The collar should fit snug and restrict the motion of your neck
  • You may shower – unless otherwise instructed
  • Do not swim or immerse the incision in water
  • Use the incentive Spirometer (plastic blow box) 4 times per day for 2 weeks
  • Walk thirty (30) minutes every morning and evening
    • Do not use hand weights
    • Walk on easy terrain
  • Do not smoke cigarettes or use nicotine products
  • Do not use non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents (NSAID’s) ie Motrin, Advil, Naprosyn, ibuprofen, etc.
  • Eat a well balanced diet
  • Your throat may be sore for a week
    • Try to eat easy to swallow foods
    • Drink liquids with meals
  • Do not drive
  • Do not lift anything heavier than 5 pounds
  • No strenuous or contact sports
  • You will be given a prescription for pain medication; this medication should last until your return visit
  • You may only require Tylenol for pain relief

Call Dr. McMorrow if any of the following occur

  • You develop a fever (temperature greater than 101.5), chills, nausea, vomiting
  • Your incision is red or starts to drain fluid
  • Your incision is excessively painful
  • You develop excessive neck pain or difficulty swallowing
  • Your arms or legs become weak or painful
  • You are concerned that something is wrong or do not understand activity restrictions

Return Visit

  • You will be seen in clinic 2 weeks after your surgery
  • Call office if you do not have 2 week follow up visit scheduled
  • You will need X-rays prior to your visit
  • Bring all your medications to follow up visits

Subsequent Care

  • Please take Vitamin D3 as prescribed
  • You may be prescribed a Bone Growth Stimulator; wear device daily as instructed
  • Do not have dental procedures for 6 months post-op; after 6 months you will need antibiotics prior to dental procedures

To learn more about our treatments or to schedule your first appointment, please contact our Rochester clinic at 585-434-5492, or write to us through our secure Patient Portal.

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