Follow-Up After Surgery for Degenerative Lumbar Disk Disease in Children

Frequency of Office Visits

  • Postoperative check: After discharge, the authors’ patients routinely return for an initial visit 4–6 weeks after surgery.
  • Subsequent follow-up: Typically, a 3-month follow-up visit is scheduled and then annual visits, which can be increased in interval over time.
  • Reasons for emergent contact: Patients should be advised to call immediately if they develop symptoms of fevers, drainage or erythema around the incision, increased pain, or neurological symptoms.

Frequency of Imaging

  • Follow-up imaging if symptoms: Routine postoperative imaging is not required unless persistent symptoms are present and fail to improve or recurrent symptoms develop. An MRI with and without contrast is helpful to differentiate scar tissue from recurrent disk herniations.