When you go home after your operation, you will feel tired and are likely to want to be careful what you want to do. In the links below you will find some useful information about what you can expect. We can only give broad guidelines. As everyone are different and may have had slightly different operations, you will always have to follow your consultant’s advice about what you can and can’t do.
If you have been given a brace your surgeon and his team will advice you on the appropriate way of weaning off this.
A gradual return to school is recommended so that you build up your sitting tolerance. You may find a full day at school/college too tiring initially. Most students return to school/college four weeks after surgery. This does vary from person to person and could depend on your travelling arrangements to and from school.
It is advisable that you arrange a visit to your school/college before you return to lessons. Make sure your teachers know and understand what surgery you have had and the precautions you are following. Also, it is important that you make sure there suitable chairs for you to sit on while at school. You must not sit on the floor. Chairs must be the right height and have back support.
You will need to make sure your teacher knows you cannot do any physical education until the precautionary period has finished.
- Keep your bags to a minimum weight
- Use two small bags, one in each hand or a small lightweight rucksack with a total weight of 2kg
- The rucksack should have two wide shoulder straps and be adjusted and worn closely fitting to the body
- Have a locker at school to avoid carrying heavy books to and from school or have a second set of books at home
- Avoid the main rush when walking from one classroom to the next
- Try and walk with a friend if possible
If you are about to sit a public examination, please consult your head teacher as it may be possible to make special arrangements for you. The hospital school teacher can discuss this with you.
Avoid any strenuous exercise especially if pulling or pushing is involved. Contact or high impact sports, for example, rugby, football, netball, hockey, horse riding and skiing. These should not be attempted until about one year after your operation, and then only when given permission by your consultant.
Non contact sports, including swimming and cycling, may be started earlier, however ask your consultant first. Every sport should be resumed gradually.
Getting in/out of a car
Initially when you need to travel after your operation, you should use a car with reclining seats and someone should recline the front passenger seat for you.
Stand with your back to the car seat, sit down on the edge supporting yourself with your hands on the door frame or dashboard. Move your bottom back, then lean back against the seat (mind your head) and swing your legs in.
Get yourself into a comfortable position. You may adjust the seat back to a more upright position. Do recline it again before getting out. Be careful not to twist your back when putting your seatbelt on.
Once you are more comfortable, you will find it much easier to get in and out and you will no longer need to recline your seat.
Travel sitting down on buses, tubes, trains etc.
Always wear a seat belt when available.
POST OPERATIVE GUIDELINES (When can you start different activities):