Tiger Woods’ Physical Therapy – After Surgery
Tiger Woods’ physical therapy was an essential part of the overall rehabilitation process after lower back pain surgery. Woods first complained of back pain in 2010. Doctors thought the pain felt was due to a herniated disc, but it was not confirmed.
In 2013, Woods played only nine holes in a major tournament due to a stiff neck. Woods said the too-soft hotel mattress might have caused the pain. One year later, Tiger withdrew from the Honda Classic due to spinal pain and underwent a microdiscectomy.
The surgery was performed to deal with a pinched nerve. After the surgery, Woods announced that he would not participate in the Master’s tournament. Microdiscectomy is one of the best MIS procedures performed to treat a herniated lumbar disc.
During the lower back pain surgery, the surgeon removes a portion of the damaged disc to relieve pressure on the spine. In September 2015, Woods underwent his second lower back pain surgery. It was a microdiscectomy procedure to remove a disc fragment.
In October 2015, Woods announced on his official website that he had undergone a follow-up procedure to relieve discomfort and pain. Although microdiscectomy relieved Woods’ back pain, he complained of lower back and leg pain in 2017.
Woods’ Lower Back Pain Surgery – ALIF
Tiger Woods is a champion golfer who has won many tournaments. However, Woods has experienced many golfing injuries throughout his illustrious career. Tiger complained of lower back pain in 2017, and according to the official website, the pain radiated from his lumbar spine through the hips to his leg. The condition is known as sciatica or sciatic pain.
Woods took medications and performed physical therapy exercises to relieve back pain. Although these conservative methods relieved the pain for some time, Woods decided to undergo ALIF surgery. It is one of the unique MIS procedures that require the surgeon to perform the procedure from the front instead of making an incision in the spine.
Woods had three prior discectomy surgeries between 2014 and 2015, all drone from a posterior MIS approach. Because his spinal discs had become narrowed, Dr. Richard Guyer advised him to undergo ALIF surgery, a minimally invasive procedure that follows an anterior approach.
Dr. Richard Guyer performed lower back pain surgery. During the procedure, the surgeon removed the damaged disc from Tiger’s lumbar spine and replaced it with a bone graft material. The surgeon removed the damaged disc between L5 and S1 and then secured the bone graft material with a high-quality mesh cage, screws, and rods.
Woods underwent ALIF surgery to spare delicate muscles, tissues, and nerves in his lumbar spine. Because Woods had previously undergone three microdiscectomy surgeries, it was not a good idea to follow a posterior approach.
Tiger Woods’ Physical Therapy
Research shows that ALIF MIS procedures’ outcomes are excellent when accompanied by physical therapy during the rehabilitation period. Tiger Woods performed physical therapy exercises under the guidance of an experienced and trained physical therapist.
At the same time, Woods would seek guidance from Dr. Guyer to speed up the rehabilitation process. Tiger Woods performed various lumbar spine exercises for two to four months. The champion golfer rested for six months to heal his lumbar spine.
Physical therapy helped Tiger Woods increased spinal flexibility by stretching important structures, such as muscles, ligaments, and tendons. All these structures support the spinal column. Dr. Guyer advised Woods to perform specific exercises to limit the internal scar tissue formation and prevent spinal stiffness.
Woods was keen on physical therapy and strictly followed the instructions. Physical therapy encouraged his lumbar spine healing by strengthening bone tissue in the L5-S1 formation and increasing blood flow.
Research highlights that physical therapy after ALIF surgery is a slow but consistent process, allowing the patient’s body to become stronger without causing excessive strain. Tiger Woods learned to practice stretching exercises to improve his spinal flexibility.
Woods performed both static and dynamic stretching to ensure his back’s mobility. Static exercises gage his spinal muscles a consistent stretch, while the dynamic ones put his spinal joints into motion.
After performing physical therapy during the rehabilitation period, Tiger Woods recovered from a lumbar spine and sciatic pain within six months. Woods came back to professional golf in 2019, participated in the Master’s tournament, and won it with style. After ALIF surgery, Tiger Woods’ physical therapy was a miraculous treatment that allowed him to play professional golf again.
MIS Procedures at MINT
MINT has qualified, licensed, and skilled neurosurgeons with many years of experience to perform MIS procedures, including ALIF surgery. If your back pain is not relieved with medication or any other conservative treatments, you can contact MINT for advanced treatment options. Like Tiger Woods, physical therapy helped him after lower back pain surgery, you can also get rid of spinal pain. Contact us today!