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Davis
07-01-2010, 12:29 PM
Had a really weird dream last night that I was about to have the operation and while I was laying on the operating table I asked if they were going to put me to sleep before they put a chest tube in. They said no so I just got up and left.
I'm supposed to have posterior surgery of thoracic spine. Does anyone know if I would need a chest tube for sure with that? Can anybody give a run-down of pretty much how everything went post and pre operatively during a posterior spinal fusion of thoracic spine?

rohrer01
07-01-2010, 01:59 PM
Hi Davis,

There are many, many threads on here that you can read about post and presurgical experiences. Try following some of these people to get a clear picture of what it is like. Have a nice day!:)

Leanna
07-01-2010, 03:27 PM
Hi Davis! I just had the anterior/posterior surgery 2 Fridays ago. I for one did have a chest tube. Don't panic about it like I did. IF you have to have it they leave it in after they do the surgery, but seriously I didnt even know it was there. You dont see it or feel it. It will be okay:o However, I may warn you that when they give you something to relax you before the surgery, it is kind of like a truth serum;) Everyone that was around found out that I thought my doctors were hot and I don't remember a thing.:p

jrnyc
07-01-2010, 04:35 PM
hey Leanna
glad you are on the healing side!

i thought that truth serum stuff knocks you out so fast there is no time to talk...maybe that's just what my doctors wanted me to think! ...any time i had surgery...which has not been for fusion.... yet...

:)

JenniferG
07-01-2010, 04:54 PM
The pre-op put me straight to sleep. I don't even remember the theatre. I recommend it to everyone. But I think you have to ask - for me at least, it wasn't offered.

Davis, I had posterior only surgery for a thoracic curve and yes, I had a chest tube. I would have been very concerned if I thought they'd put it in prior to anaesthesia, but it was done after I was asleep. But then, I'm a baby about these things.

I woke up with it in, but didn't even realise it was there for a day or two. It was taken out Day 3 and I felt nothing. It is nothing to worry about.

Back-out
07-01-2010, 08:34 PM
it is kind of like a truth serum;) Everyone that was around found out that I thought my doctors were hot and I don't remember a thing.:p
Your surgical report interested me, I looked your doctor up.

He IS hot! ( Are there more??)

Anyone besides me noticed how much more than average attractive, scoli surgeons are as a group? Not all (and the ones who aren't by conventional standards, often are appealing in other ways).

Maybe I'm turning into cougar material or something, but along with dentistry (?) this seems to be a field that attracts good looking docs. (God forbid, I would be under and reveal I find my doctor repellent!)

It's already bad enough that one surgeon I'm considering is an Arab.

Nothing against Arabs and especially not him, of course. OTOH I found myself carefully monitoring my revelations. (All med history from Israel was edited out). Just don't want to risk pressing a nerve with him, just in case. :eek: You wouldn't know, but it IS an area that is serious with almost all - if anything, more so when they live in the US than at home.

I hope I don't come to or go under, speaking Hebrew. Well, if it's afterward, I guess I'm OK no matter what his feelings. :o My last op, the PA was an Israeli surgeon come to learn from my Korean surgeon. My physical was entirely in Hebrew. That was OK. :)

Davis
07-02-2010, 09:44 AM
hey everybody, thanks for teh responses and directions on where to look to find more answers. I'd just like to get a better idea of how this is gonna go.



The pre-op put me straight to sleep. I don't even remember the theatre.

What do you mean by "theatre" ?

jrnyc
07-02-2010, 01:19 PM
theatre=operating room

J.

Davis
07-02-2010, 01:24 PM
o, ok. thanks for clarifying.

JenniferG
07-02-2010, 03:59 PM
Thanks Jess. I'm from the dark ages. It has probably not been called the operating theatre for decades.

Davis
07-02-2010, 04:01 PM
eh, it's all semantics.

ShariMSU
07-02-2010, 04:22 PM
Hi, I am 10 weeks post op from surgery. I had T2-L1 fused, posterior only. Sounds similar to yours. I to was very worried about tubes. No chest tube was used. In pre-op w/my husband they dropped something in my IV and next thing I was in recovery with no tubes! Just oxygen in my nose and a back drainage tube. This was at the base of my incision and it was a day before I realized it was even there. Hope this helps. Please don't worry as I did. It is all ok! Good luck.

Radiogirl
07-03-2010, 02:55 PM
Hi Davis,
I'm 13 weeks post op. When you say "chest tube" is that the same as "central line"? I did have a central line put in the day before surgery. It goes in right under you collarbone area, and they use that to put in your meds, and anything else they need to put in you. It's really a good thing because they aren't sticking you all the time and everything goes in that one area. I was totally awake when they put it in and I really didn't feel anything except a little pressure while it went in. They then bandaged it up and I left the hospital until the next day, when I came back for surgery. I had the posterior surgery for my thoracic scoli...they fused me T3-L2. I am very happy I did it. Click on the links below my signature line to see my before and afters..and check out the before and after xrays too. Best of luck!

JenniferG
07-03-2010, 05:00 PM
Mine was the central line too, which I assumed was the "chest tube". Someone might clarify that the two are the same?

jrnyc
07-03-2010, 05:07 PM
no..not the same...

i believe chest tubes are usually used for drainage...and also for problems with lungs...

jess

Leanna
07-03-2010, 05:18 PM
I had them both and they are not the same. One is used for meds etc. placed at the collar bone, and the other just drains the fluids away from the lungs. This one is placed on your side a few inches up from your hip. Its closer to your backside so it is very difficult to see.

Davis
07-05-2010, 07:32 AM
Thanks again everyopne for your responses.
By chest tube I meant a tube into the lung. I hade one of those when I was sixteen because my right lung collapsed. It was an emergency surgery so they just kinda wheeled over a tray of scalpels and such and went to work on me in a side-room off of triage. I did get a local anesthetic though. I remember asking why my lung collapsed and they said they didn't know and that it sometimes happened to people of my stature, tall and thin. I asked if it could have anything to do with the scoliosis and they said they didn't know.
But there's another "main" line that some people get? For medication obviously. I wonder if that's common practice with this thing?
And Radiogirl, the pictures are great, it looks like they achieved a great amouint of correction with you. Congrats.

Pooka1
07-05-2010, 11:11 AM
Did you have a pneumothorax?

If you are tall and thin and have scoliosis and had a spontaneous pneumothorax, you might want to get evaluated for Marfans syndrome.

http://ats.ctsnetjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/37/6/500

Not saying you have it. Just saying you have some signs and symptoms consistent with it.

JenniferG
07-05-2010, 03:59 PM
Thanks for that clarification. Obviously I did not have the chest tube then, it was the central line, near my collarbone.

Davis
07-06-2010, 07:51 AM
Did you have a pneumothorax?

If you are tall and thin and have scoliosis and had a spontaneous pneumothorax, you might want to get evaluated for Marfans syndrome.

I havent looked into it too closely but I kinda wondered the same thing before. I have a really high palate and hyperflexable, a few other traits too. I dont know where I'd even go to get evaluated for something like that.

And yes it was a pneumothorax.

rohrer01
07-06-2010, 08:27 AM
I havent looked into it too closely but I kinda wondered the same thing before. I have a really high palate and hyperflexable, a few other traits too. I dont know where I'd even go to get evaluated for something like that.

And yes it was a pneumothorax.

I think you can just go to your general practitioner. That is who evaluated my daughter for Marfan's.

Pooka1
07-06-2010, 09:12 AM
I think you can just go to your general practitioner. That is who evaluated my daughter for Marfan's.

It is impossible for a GP to do anything more than do an initial evaluation and referral.

The only way you can get evaluated for Marfans is to visit a few specialists to see if you meet the diagnostic criteria.

The specialists you need to see include:

1. Opthamologist for a slit-lamp test for lens dislocation. This is done in a normal eye exam but you have to make sure they do it. Mention Marfans and the doctor will likely be famiiliar with it as it relates to eye issues.

2. Cardiologist to do an echo to see if you have any enlargement of the aortic root or any other valve issues. You may need to repeat this test as you may not show an enlarged aorta on one visit but may develop it in a few years for the next. You can never stop the echos (if you are at risk) because there is no maximum age at which aortic enlargemnent no longer can occur in association with Marfans although many people if they develop it will develop it in their 40s.

3. Orthopedic surgeon which you already have visited. You might want to ask specifically about Marfans and mention you had a spontaneous pneumothorax. He may order an MRI or some other imaging modality to see if you have any problem with your dura. That is also in the diagnostic criteria.

4. Medical geneticist who will do an extensive number of body measurements and other diagnostic tests in addition to analyzing your extended family history for signs of Marfans. You say you are hypermobile. That is one of the tests/criteria. About 25% of Marfans cases are spontaneous mutations so it doesn't matter if you have nobody else in your family with it.

I don't think you can rule out Marfans with anything less than visits (continued in some cases over your life) with all these specialists. Note that they may not agree on risk if you don't meet the criteria now. In my daughters' cases, the pediatrician and the orthopedic surgeon don't think they have Marfans but the pediatric cardiologist and the medical geneticist think they have enough indicators to warrant continued cardiac echos for the rest of their life.

You may meet the criteria now in which case you definitely need repeated echos. Catching the aortic dissection issue early is what has raised the average lifespan of Marfans patients from about half a normal life span to something close to that for the general population. It's the key thing. Early death due to Marfans aortic dissection is entirely avoidable.

Davis
07-06-2010, 04:00 PM
I had a few surgeries when I was younger for bone cysts and wasn't allowed to play any of the sports in school or do anything physical like that because my DR at the time said that my bones were too "soft". It seemed like everytime I fell I would go to the ER and get x-rays and they would either find a fracture or a bone cyst. It sucked. Luckely, later on, he said I grew out of it and I was released to do anything I liked.

Pooka1
07-06-2010, 04:24 PM
I had a few surgeries when I was younger for bone cysts and wasn't allowed to play any of the sports in school or do anything physical like that because my DR at the time said that my bones were too "soft". It seemed like everytime I fell I would go to the ER and get x-rays and they would either find a fracture or a bone cyst. It sucked. Luckely, later on, he said I grew out of it and I was released to do anything I liked.

I would add that history to your other history and present signs/symptoms and get a thorough evaluation from a medical geneticist. It would help to first have had the eye exam and echo cardiogram before you go. That's what I did... you don't need to be a rocket scientist to read about Marfans and figure out which tests you need. Then you take it all to the geneticist for the exam and history evaluation.

None of that other stuff will kill you. An aortic dissection, if you get that, might.

Good luck.

Davis
09-23-2010, 11:51 PM
well, hope I don't get an aortic dissection. lol M tired n making light of it. Thanks a million for the info though. Hey, I wrote a punk rock song a long time ago called dissection ... yep I'm ubertired gahhhhhhhh bahhhh

LisaB
09-24-2010, 08:54 AM
I am 3 1/2 weeks post op and had a posterior approach with no chest tube. I did have a central line. I think a chest tube is primarily used with the anterior approach when they have to deflate a lung. A few years ago I cracked a rib and ended up puncturing my lung and had to have a small chest tube put in then. I think it's a lung thing.

junosand
09-24-2010, 10:07 AM
this may be more than you want to know but for the curious here goes; i'm a retired surgeon and i placed many of both of these kinds of lines and here is the difference:

1. a CENTRAL LINE is a large bore IV placed into either the jugular vein in the neck or in the subclavian vein underneath the clavicle (collar bone); they are used for a variety of purposes, mostly when a large volume needs to be infused or what is infused will irritate the vein walls and either hurt or occlude the smaller veins in the arms normally used for IVs (intravenous lines)

2. a CHEST TUBE is a tube placed into the pleural space (a potential space around the lungs that is normally collapsed but has slippery surfaces so the lungs can slide a little as they expand and contract with breathing); rather than infusing anything into the tube, it is rather used to drain air, blood or any other fluids there so that the space will collapse and thus allow the lung to fully expand

Davis
09-24-2010, 12:02 PM
very informative, thanks for clarifying.