Emotional support for people having back surgery is very important. You may be worried about whether you’ve made the right decision. You may be fearful about having general anaesthetic and undergoing an invasive procedure. You may be anxious about how painful the recovery will be, how quickly you’ll recover, and—most importantly—about whether the surgery will be successful in relieving your symptoms.
One option that may be helpful is for you or a family member to talk with someone who has recently undergone a similar operation. A free, telephone-based, peer support service for Canadians called Ortho Connect may be helpful. You will be matched with a volunteer who is willing to share his or her own personal experience with back surgery and can offer emotional support along with practical tips. To access Ortho Connect, call the Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation at 1-800-461-3639, or go to their website.
While such support can be useful, keep in mind that many factors will affect both your experience with surgery and your recovery. These include your pre-operative symptoms, the nature of your operation, how your body heals after surgery, your overall physical and psychological health and your level of social support. These may not be exactly the same for you as they are for other patients, so don’t expect your experience to match theirs in every way.