Early after surgery
Early after surgery, the focus is to heal and regain mobility. Your medical team will be on hand to ensure you are comfortable, your wounds are healing well and no complications have arisen. However the most essential professional at this stage is the physiotherapist, who will help you to mobilise safely and improve any deficits you have developed. Sometimes they may have concerns that your function prevents you performing essential tasks of daily living [such as holding a knife and fork] and they will involve an occupational therapist to help with these aspects .
Patients with CSM have a range of disabilities. Although most return home swiftly after the operation (once they are mobile and have reached a safe level of independence), sometimes the recovery is slower or incomplete. In these situations the options include, further support at home, rehabilitation as an outpatient or admission to a rehabilitation unit for inpatient rehab.
Recent research confirmed that individuals undergoing surgery for CSM can experience significant improvements over the course of a year. However, the extent of improvements is variable and the factors that influence the recovery are poorly understood.
Patients with CSM should therefore be able to expect dedicated rehabilitation in a specialist spine unit. However, the reality is that rehabilitation is often limited to a short course of physiotherapy.
Myelopathy.org therefore aims to raise awareness, to support research, and to provide policy makers information so that CSM patients get the optimal care that they deserve.