Saturday, November 22, 2008

Healing from a Collapsed Spine

How long does it take to heal from a collapsed spine? From 15 compression fractures and shrinking 3 inches in 1 month (18 months ago) and losing the lumbar curve?

I don't know.
I wake every morning and do 20 minutes of physical therapy before I get out of bed.
I eat plenty of protein.
I eat nutrient dense foods, plenty of organic fruits and vegetables.
I drink Goji juice -- 8 ounces per day.
I take flax oil and fish oil.
I take supplements.
I do stretching exercises and yoga.
I meditate daily.
I say morning prayers of gratitude, expressing my thanks for all the love, abundance, health, support, joy, friendship, inspiration, creativity and peace that is in my life.
I say prayers before dinner, and whenever it strikes me to during the day.
I do standing physical therapy exercises.
I drink plenty of liquids.
I drink goat's milk to enhance the absorption of calcium.
All in all, I feel quite healthy, in fact.

I have enough energy to do what my spine is able to do.
I no longer need a walker -- gave it up 11 months ago.
I no longer need walking sticks -- gave them up 9 months ago.
I can walk up and down the stairs many times a day, as of 4 months ago.
I can walk for 1 hour as of 2 months ago.
I no longer get dizzy, a side effect of the chemo, as of 1 month ago.
I can now do yoga lying on my back, as of 2 weeks ago.

So how long does it take to heal from a collapsed spine?
I don't know.
After 18 months, I still need pain medication daily.
I need to rest my spine after being out of bed for 2-3 hours, and that means I either lie down, recline, or kneel on all fours. Something to relieve the effects of gravity on my spine. I'm still gardening, even though the high temperatures are in the 30's, because kneeling on all 4's feels good to my spine.
Mornings are good, and I am able to move around with ease as I take care of myself, and the ease disappears as the day goes by.

Will there be some magic day that I wake up and find that I am suddenly healed?
I don't know.
I expect that I will continue to improve over time, slowly to be sure, but improve nevertheless in baby steps, tiny increments -- this day being able to stretch sideways, that day being able to run a few steps. Exploring the range of comfort, which is constantly changing and expanding.

So I ask how long it takes to heal from a collapsed spine, and the answer is I don't know. But I do know that I am alive, and grateful to be alive, and healing, and grateful for that as well. And I also know that it doesn't matter if I don't have an answer to the question now, because I will find the answer as I patiently live my life.


Frenchtoast said...

My mother just found out that she has a colapsed spine she isn't sure what that is or what it's from she was
not in any accidents. Her doctor ordered a M.R.I to better tell whats going on but the results will take weeks I understand that each case is differn't but any info that u could supply would be greatfully appreciated and God Bless U on your healing
Mrs Bennett

Joyous Judy said...

Dear Frenchtoast,

I am sorry to hear of your mother's predicament. As far as I am aware, the most common cause of spinal collapse is osteoporosis, when the bones and spinal vertebrae loose calcium and become weak. The spine is particularly vulnerable to collapse because the round parts of the spinal vertebrae (the vertebral bodies) are not like the bones of the arms and legs, but are much spongier. Spinal collapse may consist of multiple vertebrae with compression fractures, such as I experienced, in which case the fractured vertebrae are compressed so one shrinks. One need not have an accident to have spinal collapse occur.

After an MRI, the radiologist may be able to 'read' the images right away (within then next few days), so hopefully it will not take weeks.

Blessings on your journey,
Joyous Judy