Now You Can Get Back On Your Feet Quicker After Neck or Back Surgery

Recovering from neck or back surgery can be a challenge especially for the first few days--but thanks to an emerging trend, you could be back on your feet much sooner.

What is ERAS?

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ERAS is short for Enhanced Recovery After Surgery. It’s goal? To help patients achieve early recovery after undergoing major surgery.

Medical personnel such as your spine surgeon, anesthesiologist, and nurses will work together as a team to bring comprehensive care to each patient. To make this happen, treatment is approached differently in two main ways.  

  1. Traditional practices are re-evaluated and replaced when another practice has been proven to be better in regards to recovery time and complication rates.

  2. The idea of recovery becomes a part of the entire surgical process, meaning the steps to get you better often begin before surgery even takes place.

What does Enhanced Recovery After Surgery look like for a neck or back pain patient?

Recently a protocol was developed, providing a specific set of steps that should be followed, to help neck or back pain patients recover safer, easier, and quicker. Some of these surgery recovery strategies may include:

  • Pre-surgery exercise

  • Minimally invasive neck and back surgery approaches

  • Early mobilization (getting patients out of bed the same day as surgery, rather than days after surgery)

  • Keeping patients and their families engaged though regular communication, which allows everyone to be a participating member of the healthcare team

  • Collaborative care approach (teamwork among medical personnel)

  • Avoiding prolonged fasting periods (early feeding)

  • Prescribing and using opioids sparingly

  • Drains, drips, and tubes removed early or avoided altogether if possible

  • Using multiple methods to control pain

  • Convenient access to medical team once discharged

Although this is a relatively new protocol for surgeons, Enhanced Recovery After Surgery has been shown to shorten recovery times by 30% or more and reduce complication rates after the operation by up to 50%.

According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), using ERAS strategies could enable major spinal surgery patients to recover more quickly with overall better health and improved longer-term outcomes. The evidence is showing that spine surgery patients are able to have shorter hospital stays, incur less cost, reduce pain, experience fewer complications, improve their comfort without reliance on opioids, and return sooner to their everyday life with long-lasting recovery. These are all benefits which are very important to someone considering spine surgery.

Overall, ERAS has produced improved outcomes and greater patient satisfaction. Dr. Fayaz is happy to help answer all your questions about ERAS and how it could work for you. To make an appointment, contact us at 281-880-0700 to schedule an appointment to visit with Dr. Fayaz and his staff.

30 Degrees North