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WIll I need a special type of mattress on my bed?

Dr. Stephen Ondra

Chicago, IL

Generally patients use a normal mattress on their bed. We work with patients while they are in the hospital to teach them how to get into and out of bed comfortably and safely.

Dr. Scott J. Luhmann

St. Louis, MO

No. Most individuals have an adequate mattress on their bed. Occasionally, a hospital bed may be helpful if the physical environment at home makes regular use of the bedroom and bed temporarily difficult.

Dr. Robert W. Molinari

Rochester, NY

No special mattress will be required.

Dr. David W. Polly, Jr.

Minneapolis, MN

You usually don't need a special mattress. Also most patients are comfortable sleeping on their back very soon after surgery (like the first day).

Dr. Baron S. Lonner

New York, NY

A special mattress is not required. A firm or moderately firm mattress is most desirable to provide support. A hospital bed is not essential, particularly for children, but may be of benefit to adults after more extensive surgery, as it may be more difficult for the adult patient to get into and out of the bed unless the height can be adjusted.

Dr. James Mooney, III

Detroit, MI

There is no special type of mattress that is necessary for your bed at home or in the hospital.

Dr. W. Christopher Urban

Glen Burnie, MD

No, you will not need a special type mattress. Any comfortable mattress is sufficient.

Dr. Thomas G. Lowe

Woodridge Orthopaedics & Spine Center, P.C.

No special mattress is needed, other than a firm mattress. If a waterbed is used, it should be inflated so that it provides adequate support during the first 3-4 weeks.

Dr. Jean-Pierre C. Farcy

New York, NY
M.M.C. Spine Center

Any comfortable firm mattress is appropriate.

Dr. Charles E. Johnston, II

Texas Scottish Rite Hospital Orthopedic Group

No, whatever you already have at home is fine

Dr. Michael F. O'Brien

Denver Orthopaedics

No. All that is required is a reasonably firm mattress to support the spine but which is comfortable for the patient.

Dr. Robert S. Pashman

Los Angeles, CA

No. A mattress that was comfortable for you before surgery should be comfortable for you after surgery as well.

Dr. Frank J. Schwab

New York, NY

No. Usually after scoliosis surgery a special mattress is not required. It is helpful to be in a hospital bed with electric head and foot elevation for a couple of days, but this is no longer necessary by the time of discharge.

Dr. Dennis G. Crandall

Mesa, AZ

People prefer all different types of mattresses. The mattress you currently have may be as good as any. Before spending any money on a new mattress, try it out by laying on it for 10 – 15 minutes to see how it feels. You will know if you need a new mattress.

Dr. John P. Lubicky

Chicago, IL
Shriner's Hospital for Children

No, but firm mattresses seem to be best for everyone, whether they have surgery or not.

Dr. John T. Smith

University of Utah Department of Orthopaedic Surgery

No. Any firm mattress is reasonable. Patients may lie in any position after surgery.

The commentary above recounts the experiences of these physicians. Medtronic invited them to share their stories candidly. Keep in mind that results vary; not every patient's response is the same. Talk with your doctor to learn more about any products that are mentioned above.

It is important that you discuss the potential risks, complications and benefits of spinal surgery with your doctor prior to receiving treatment, and that you rely on your doctor's judgment. Only your doctor can determine whether you are a suitable candidate for this treatment.

  • Published: June 20, 2002
  • Updated: April 19, 2010