Wound Care

  • Keep incisions clean and dry
    • Wash with soap and water, dry with towel
  • Do not apply any creams, ointments, etc. to incisions
  • You will have steri-strips over the front incision, do not remove the strips
  • You will have staples on your back
  • The incision may be left uncovered
  • You may apply a bandage over the incisions if it is more comfortable, but change bandage daily
  • Keep the incisions/ bandage dry

General Instructions

  • Wear your brace at all times when out of bed
  • You do not need to sleep in the brace
  • The brace may be donned in a sitting position
  • The brace should be snug and restrict the movement of your back
  • You may shower – unless otherwise instructed
  • Do not swim or immerse the incision in water
  • You may be more comfortable at home with equipment such as
    • walker
    • shower chair
    • toilet riser
  • Please ask for this equipment before you leave the hospital
  • 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) i.e. Motrin, Advil, Naprosyn, ibuprofen, etc.
  • Eat a well balanced diet
  • Do not drive
  • Do not lift anything heavier than 5 pounds
  • No strenuous or contact sports
  • You may use heating pad or ice pack for comfort, but do not sleep with either heat or ice as they may cause thermal injury
  • 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 back pain
  • Your 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 appointment
  • 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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