Returning To Work Most people consider work a good thing. As a spine surgeon, it is my goal to get you back into the workplace as early as possible without compromising your ability to heal from an injury or recover from surgery. Work is good for our mental well being, and sense of self-worth. I very much want to avoid patients developing any mindset that they are disabled and will not be able to work. Patients who come seeking to be certified as disabled already have a major obstacle standing in the path of optimal recovery. We individualize every case when it comes to return-to-work issues. I find that it is generally helpful to get the patient back into the workplace early, even if they are not doing their original job. We take into account the nature of the job, the injury or surgery that the patient has had, and specific issues unique to each patient. Light duty is often available with many employers. We frequently will allow a patient to work half-days for the first few weeks back at work during the rehabilitation period. As time progresses, we will supervise a gradual return toward full duty.