Know what to expect before, during and after spine surgery

Across its four acute care hospitals, Main Line Health’s surgeons perform thousands of spine surgeries annually. Our multidisciplinary team approach to care includes surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists, therapists and care managers. Throughout your care with us, you can be assured that our team will communicate with you every step of the way.

We want you to be as comfortable as possible for your procedure. This requires you to plan and prepare during the days ahead. To that end, this book will help you:

  • Prepare mentally and physically for surgery
  • Know what to expect before, during and after surgery
  • Understand how your caregivers can help during this time
  • Know what equipment will be used while healing
  • Know what to expect during recovery

Download our guide to spine surgery at Main Line Health (PDF)

After reading this manual, please check the pre-op checklist below each week to ensure you’re on track with your preparation. In the meantime, we look forward to taking excellent care of you.

Spine surgery pre-op checklist

  • Choose a coach. Select a family member or friend who can drive you to the hospital on the day of surgery, pick up your prescriptions, drive you home on the day of discharge and drive you to medical appointments during recovery.
  • Be prepared. For those who have a power of attorney or living will document for medical affairs and decisions, a copy of the document is required for your chart.
  • Plan ahead. To make the days following surgery easier, review your home’s arrangements to facilitate your recovery.
  • Attend preadmission testing/clearances. Follow your surgeon’s instructions for preadmission testing and medical clearance, which includes a physical examination, medical history and lab tests.
  • Take preoperative shower(s). Follow the special bathing instructions in the preoperative shower section.

To schedule an appointment with an orthopedic specialist at Main Line Health, call 1.866.CALL.MLH (225.5654) or use our secure online appointment request form.