PDA

View Full Version : Post op: will I stand straighter without trying?



Ryy
03-30-2010, 08:16 PM
I'm not sure about scoli, but with kypho (I have 75 degree kypho and mild scoli), this is a big issue with mine. Over the last few months it's gotten much harder to stand up firm and strait. Seems every week it gets harder and harder to keep up with standing upright. The muscles are so tired of working to keep in line. I'm almost positive that my curve is getting worse starting about a year ago. If I stand up straight, I get so exhausted and muscle spasms of course. If I let it all go and relax, the pain is a little worse and the breathing is worse as well. I can't win either way :(

For you post ops out there, was this an issue before surg and after surg, did you body simply stand up and automatically support itself? If needed I have a thread with my whole story a page or two back.. Thx for your time!

debbei
03-30-2010, 09:16 PM
Prior to surgery, I had progressed to having 2 66 degree curves plus some kyphosis. I found myself slouching easily while sitting. Now, I couldn't if I tried, and people tell me what wonderful posture I have. (people who don't know my history tell me that.) Of course, my fusion starts up at T3, so I suppose if a fusion starts low in the T's, it would be possible to slouch some.

JenniferG
03-30-2010, 09:27 PM
It's odd how sitting bolt upright can be comfortable! So often I'll be sitting there, bolt upright, not using the back of the chair and people offer me a cushion or another chair where I'll "be comfy". It's not necessary, as I'm perfectly comfy. Sitting straight just comes naturally now, without any effort. :D

Ryy, after the surgery, you won't get that tired feeling just from holding yourself upright. It just happens without effort.

LindaRacine
03-30-2010, 11:14 PM
I'm not sure about scoli, but with kypho (I have 75 degree kypho and mild scoli), this is a big issue with mine. Over the last few months it's gotten much harder to stand up firm and strait. Seems every week it gets harder and harder to keep up with standing upright. The muscles are so tired of working to keep in line. I'm almost positive that my curve is getting worse starting about a year ago. If I stand up straight, I get so exhausted and muscle spasms of course. If I let it all go and relax, the pain is a little worse and the breathing is worse as well. I can't win either way :(

For you post ops out there, was this an issue before surg and after surg, did you body simply stand up and automatically support itself? If needed I have a thread with my whole story a page or two back.. Thx for your time!
Several people I know who have had kyphosis tell me that they felt so wonderful to be able to stand up straight after surgery. If you have it corrected by surgery, you will feel stiff in the beginning, but it will soon feel very natural to stand straight.

--Linda

jenparker
03-31-2010, 09:10 AM
My two cents worth--I'm 8 weeks out. I was fused T3-L3 and besides the double major scoli also had kyphosis. I am so straight I love it! It has been a little adjustment though.

It feels like I have a metal brick right where the kyphosis was--but each day as I walk, loosen up in the shower and am regaining my normal routine it is becoming less and less something that I think about. I'm just straight and there is nothing I have to think about. And. . . every time I pass a mirror I grin to think how great it is not to have a hump on my back!

Good luck with your decision.

Jennifer

doodie
03-31-2010, 09:13 AM
Ryy - You won’t be able to slouch even if you wanted to if your fusion goes up high enough.

Right after my surgery with my hardware in place and everything properly aligned I did feel very stiff; however, I had such a release of pressure and pain too. While taking a spin around the floor while still in the hospital I ran across my anesthesiologist who was coming in to check on me. I was trying to explain how my back felt and described it to him as “it feels so good to relax in my spine.” I don’t think he truly understood but maybe someone here will!

After all the years of aches and pains….I still feel that way both while standing and sitting (on non-cushy chairs of course) So good to be able to relax but be tall and straight!

debbei
03-31-2010, 11:55 AM
It feels like I have a metal brick right where the kyphosis was--but each day ...

Jennifer,

I'm also T3-L3. That 'brick' part gets better over time. :) Some days I have little setbacks, but they go away much more quickly than they did in the beginning.

naptown78
03-31-2010, 01:36 PM
This was my issue before my revision surgery almost 2 weeks ago. I could not stand up straight no matter what. It was so exhausting to fight my body. NOW, I am almost euphoric that I am stick straight without even thinking about it! I have almost no pain except for an aching in my lower back and in the area of the osteotomy. After what I have survived this is tolerable. I am wearing a brace 24/7 so it is difficult to gauge what I will feel like without the brace but I do not have to force myself into a upright position, it comes natural and I am soooo happy!

gmw
03-31-2010, 02:07 PM
Glad your revision surgery is going well. Wow, to be able to stand straight without having to think about it sounds wonderful. Hope all continues to go well.

jenparker
03-31-2010, 03:57 PM
Jennifer,

I'm also T3-L3. That 'brick' part gets better over time. :) Some days I have little setbacks, but they go away much more quickly than they did in the beginning.


Thanks Debbei for understanding "the brick"--I've explained it to my family & friends and they want to be understanding so they kind of shake their head "yes" but unless you have actually felt it I don't think you can understand! It is right where all of my pain and fatigue was before surgery--so it's just changed and I know it will get better.

jrnyc
03-31-2010, 05:09 PM
could a "lumbar or pelvis" person please answer this for me...

how does one sit..at all...after rods are placed all the way to the sacrum or pelvis...i just dont understand how one can bend enuf to sit...i understand that when standing, people can still bend from the hips...but i dont understand the sitting thing...

i see my NYC surgeon april 12th to discuss surgery (he has talked to me about it for the last 5 years!)..and about whether he or another NYC scoli surgeon will begin using the "dr anand minimal invasive for lumbar" method...
because if the answer is "yes," i would schedule my surgery!

thanks in advance for any lumbar folks who can answer my question...

jess

naptown78
03-31-2010, 05:43 PM
Jess,
When you sit you sit from your hips. Also, your hip joints are not being operated on . Have your surgeon explain the anatomy of sitting and standing to you on 4/12. Sitting has always been my most comfortable position even prior to my revision. Good luck.....

doodie
03-31-2010, 08:02 PM
Jess -
The sitting thing seemed odd to me too at first, but if you look at my "after surgery x-ray" you'll see the placement of the two longer pelvic screws... They are nowhere near the ball and socket joints of my hips.

I never had a moment's pain from those screws either, although the idea of them gave me pause! :p

titaniumed
03-31-2010, 09:20 PM
Jess

You really should have come up here when you went to LA. If you could see my mobility, you wouldn’t believe it.

When you sit, your legs pivot at the hip joints. Your pelvis doesn’t move and fusion doesn’t affect sitting.

In that skiing photo, I twisted mostly with my legs for the photo. The shoulders also rotate some as they are attached by soft tissues and not fused to the spine. The ribs are attached and do not twist.

In the sitting position, sitting on a stationary chair, I can rotate my shoulders to approx 45 degrees. The pelvis actually moves some as it is on soft tissues.(My ass) LOL If I turn, with my peripheral vision I can see back to 150 degrees. I cannot see 180 degrees behind me and have to rotate my legs, or stand up to look. I will post some photos to help explain this tomorrow.

Ryy
Chances are they will fuse you up high, probably to T2 like myself. They should get your balance set just right and you will have no problems sitting or standing. I am an example of "perfect posture" and nobody can tell I have such a long fusion. No leaning to the side, forward or backward.

Ed

LindaRacine
03-31-2010, 10:08 PM
People think they bend at the waist, but there's actually fairly little bending done above the hips.

jrnyc
03-31-2010, 10:28 PM
thanks, everyone...for the replies..much appreciated!

i kinda tried it while sitting at the computer...i figured out that i would sit REALLY straight up...but i guess with the rods, that wouldnt make me tired the way it does now!

Ed..i can tell how mobile you are! the skiing, the scuba diving...and now i know how you could look like you swiveled towards the camera in that pix!

i have alot to discuss with the NYC surgeon on april 12th..

thanks again

jess

foofer
03-31-2010, 11:02 PM
Recently I took an 18" dowel and tucked one end into the back waistband of my jeans, going up my spine and duct taped it to about T2. Walked and sat around like that for awhile. I know, pretty weird, but I think I might be on to something. Might be harder with kyphosis, which is the one thing I don't have...I have lordosis at 80.

I think these people are telling the truth. It's not so bad.

Ryy
04-05-2010, 06:59 PM
thanks for all the great replies guy! much appreciated.. any others out there with kypho?

hopefully my breathing will be better as well. my breathing is much better if i stand up straight and tall, but it's still not as free due to the muscles i have to stiffen and tighten up to get straight. if i slouch and let it go, instead of the chest opening when i breathe, my lungs open up in my back and my back expands. Also have much stress going on in my stomach from slouching. I'm guessing a successful surg will help with this i hope.

my neck has been very tense/stressed for the last week or two and i can't get it comfortable. never had this going on before. classic kypho neck going on! too bad my curve is getting worse (info is in my main thread if interest). i'm leaning toward surgery more and more every day even though i don't want it, i think it needs to be done. finally have a great doc as of a few months ago. i'm in good hands with him.. take care guys, thanks again!

kyphosis
04-19-2010, 06:21 PM
Im fused T-1 to L-1.

I was 59 pre op, 44 post op Kyphosis.

I have a C-shape hump now and do not stand up straight. I have to hyper extend my hips.

Im constantly fight the rods in my back. Im miserable.

My surgery was at the Hey Clinic in Raleigh Durham, NC

I can only image how good it would feel to stand up straight without effort.

jrnyc
04-19-2010, 08:15 PM
Hi kyphosis
i am so sorry that you are struggling in such pain! is there any chance that you could go to someone for a consult...a scoli surgeon who knows revision...it just seems that, after going thru so much with surgery, you deserve a decent quality of life!!
i saw my surgeon April 12th and he offered minimal invasive for me...L4-S1 and T11-sacrum...with pelvic fixation...this is a big change from my visit to him a year ago! dont know if i have a touch of kyphosis...i do need 2 osteotomies and 2 laminectomies...i know i do have listhesis (l2 on L3, L3 on L4), spinal stenosis, rotation, arthritis of spine, and degenerative disc disease....

i really hope that your insurance will pay for a consult with another scoli surgeon...you shouldnt have to settle for your current surgery results!

best regards
jess

jesscv
04-20-2010, 01:17 PM
i'm a certified pilates instructor, and i have to say this: after my surgery, i thought my posture was perfect and i didn't have to "try" to stand up straight anymore. but i was wrong! i learned this during my pilates certification, when we were doing postural assessments on each other. while my spine is technically "stuck" in neutral (proper) alignment/ideal posture, this does not mean that my shoulders are automatically pushed down and back into their ideal position. i have a tendency to round my shoulders, so even though i look like i have perfect posture all the time, i don't. in particular, because my shoulders are so weak from having scoliosis for a long time AND after going through the surgery, i have to work especially hard to keep my shoulders depressed & retracted. also, i have to be sure not to arch my lower back (which is NOT fused), and so that's easy to do. but, an overly extended back is lordotic, and so is not proper posture. ideal posture should maintain the natural position of one's spine. slight extension in the cervical and lumbar spine, and slight flexion in the thoracic.

Doodles
04-21-2010, 11:10 PM
Jess--
I was told today by Dr. Lenke I could try pilates and needed to work on flexibility which I'm glad of. Since I'm fused to S1 with the iliac bolts or whatever I just can't imagine that I can do much. Does it work if you've fused completely top to bottom? I'd love to get back to it. Thanks for your help. Janet

jesscv
04-22-2010, 10:37 AM
Definitely, there is so much you can do in Pilates without extending, flexing, bending or rotating your spine in any way. I didn't get back into Pilates until I was 6 months post-op just to be safe, but everything is great now and there is only little I can't do. Even though I'm fused T2-L1, and most of my lumbar spine is technically "free," I still don't want to overly use that region and put unnecessary wear and tear on it. So, I avoid just about all spinal articulation exercises...and still get a great workout! Personally, planks, shoulder bridges, side leg kicks/circles, toe taps, and general arm, leg, shoulder/back and chest work on the Pilates Reformer are my favorite. I suggest you take Pilates at a physical therapy clinic. Many PT clinics these days have a Pilates-integrated rehab program set up.

fashionista
06-21-2010, 04:47 AM
Definitely, there is so much you can do in Pilates without extending, flexing, bending or rotating your spine in any way. I didn't get back into Pilates until I was 6 months post-op just to be safe, but everything is great now and there is only little I can't do. Even though I'm fused T2-L1, and most of my lumbar spine is technically "free," I still don't want to overly use that region and put unnecessary wear and tear on it. So, I avoid just about all spinal articulation exercises...and still get a great workout! Personally, planks, shoulder bridges, side leg kicks/circles, toe taps, and general arm, leg, shoulder/back and chest work on the Pilates Reformer are my favorite. I suggest you take Pilates at a physical therapy clinic. Many PT clinics these days have a Pilates-integrated rehab program set up.

Can you do mat work? Does that put strains on the spine?

jesscv
06-21-2010, 11:47 AM
yep! i take a pilates mat class 3x a week. again, i just let pain be my guide and avoid the spinal articulation exercises. there are modifications you can do for just about any movement, that still maintain the integrity of the exercise. the same muscles are targeted and are just as effective.