Can I see a chiropractor after having spinal fusion surgery?
Yes….but probably not for that area.
Spinal fusion surgery is an orthopedic or neurosurgical procedure that joins two vertebrae together to create a fusion at a specific spinal level. These techniques are designed to stop the motion of a painful vertebral segment or to treat a weak or unstable segment of the spine. After the surgery, the two segments that were joined together function like one solid piece of bone. As a result, your chiropractor would not be able to treat the motion within that particular segment, but would still be able to treat that general body region utilizing other conservative techniques like stretching and exercise. Massage and acupuncture can also be effective.
“Spinal fusion is a contraindication to adjust that area. However, other areas of the spine and extremities can still be adjusted a different spinal segment. If you had low back surgery, I can usually still treat you neck. I can also do muscle work to the glutes or legs that might help your low move better.” -Dr. Rachel
Generally, care after surgery is not initiated until four to six weeks after the procedure is performed, and in some cases it may be up to three months.