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lordswild
07-10-2014, 02:45 PM
Has any one had an appointment with or surgery with Vincent Arlet in Philadelphia?

How was the shower handled--was a hand held shower spray helpful? And using the toilet?

Please list some of the other items that helped.

I will have help day and night--thank goodness.

How do you get up and sit down? What position is the choice for sleeping in the bed and how is it maintained?

springchicken
07-11-2014, 09:21 AM
Hi lordswild,

Yes, Dr. Arlet was my surgeon. Do you have a surgery scheduled already with him? Best of luck to you. He is an excellent surgeon so I think you will be in good hands. I would just say that I felt the magnitude of the recovery was sort of downplayed by his staff. I wish I had had more of an idea of what to expect. You will see as you read the forum that the recovery is very slow so patience is key. I'm still learning.

There are many good threads on how to prepare for surgery so I would encourage you to do some searches. I didn't personally use a handheld showerhead, but it might be helpful. I would definitely get a raised toilet seat so you can use it if you need to. Sometimes I used it and sometimes I didn't. I would sort of do whatever felt comfortable.

Grabbers are also very helpful (you won't be able to pick things off the floor for a while) and I know some people have used devices to help them put on socks and shoes.

Laxatives are key! Seriously can't stress this enough! You need lots of them. The doctor's office will go over this with you, too.

You will probably sleep on your back for a while (at least I did, and I'm a side sleeper). And the PTs at the hospital will show you how to get up and out of bed by "logrolling". If you have some time before your surgery, I would get as strong as you can to help you get in and out of bed. It really helped for me.

-spring

green m&m
07-11-2014, 05:32 PM
Shower chair?

I just scored one, never used at a thrift shop for 7 bucks.

My surgery is scheduled mid-september and figured couldn't hurt to have one on hand in case I want to use it.

lordswild
07-12-2014, 08:36 AM
I am not scheduled as to the day--I asked for September/October and his office is to schedule as we get closer.

I am so very glad to have your opinion...I have been very surprised that I have not seen any/much information on him on the Forum. I found him simply by searching for the best scoliosis surgeons--he is rated one of the eight. How did you locate him?

Please tell me any thing you can about him and his staff. Who was his assistant--his assistant now is a female: Dana--very tall and goodlooking

I flew to Philadelphia to see him May 20--and was in a "coma" the whole time--very few people even knew I went...

One incident almost made me cancel with him--when he learned I had a folder full of medical information (why I took it, I do not know), Dr. Arlet wanted copies--a male nurse took and was to copy the information and return it immediately--some of the information was not even current and had been purged from the systems. He did not return my information and when I received it, a part of a very important and recent study of my back (CT imposed on a BD) was partially missing and I still need to check on some other information: blood work since 2011, all mammo results (very important as a problem is normal for me), various MRI results. I was absolutely flapped out!!!

springchicken
07-13-2014, 11:11 AM
Hi lordswild,

I really havent gone to him for that long of a time. I had gone to the Rothman Institute for many years but made the switch after reading about Arlet. I did meet with Dana, too. She's very nice and always called back when I had questions. I was surprised to not read many patient testimonials on Arlet but other doctors who I met with at Penn (cardiologists, etc) spoke very highly of him. I liked the fact he had an orthopedic and neurolgical background. And he seemed like a prolific researcher-very knowledgable about scoliosis. I was lucky to have an uncomplicated straightforward surgery.

That's unfortunate about your records though! What a mess! Did you ever get them back?

What will your fusion be ?

lordswild
07-13-2014, 01:26 PM
I am so glad for the very positive feedback on Dr. Arlet--as you said there isn't much out there about him at all

The record thing has concerned me a great deal to the point of considering cancelling having surgery with Arlet but I am thinking that that might be throwing the baby out with the bath water...

I called July 1 and still have not had a return call from Dana...that also concerns me... especially as you say you always had a return call...how long did it take for the return call...I am wondering about the 4th of July playing into that....

But I am beginning to feel like Saturday's step child...

springchicken
07-13-2014, 02:26 PM
I am so glad for the very positive feedback on Dr. Arlet--as you said there isn't much out there about him at all

The record thing has concerned me a great deal to the point of considering cancelling having surgery with Arlet but I am thinking that that might be throwing the baby out with the bath water...

I called July 1 and still have not had a return call from Dana...that also concerns me... especially as you say you always had a return call...how long did it take for the return call...I am wondering about the 4th of July playing into that....

But I am beginning to feel like Saturday's step child...

I would give another call due to the holiday. I believe they only see patients Tuesdays and Thursdays so she usually only calls on those days. It does seem like a very busy office and somewhat disorganized unfortunately (in terms of recordkeeping-I had to call the office a few times when getting short-term disability sorted out).

I totally understand your concerns. Ultimately you have to go with someone you feel comfortable with. I do believe he is an excellent surgeon, but again my surgery was straight forward. If it would ease your mind to meet with a second surgeon I would do so since it's such a big surgery! It would be great if you could find someone else who's had surgery with him...maybe on another forum?

lordswild
07-13-2014, 04:40 PM
I was scheduled to have surgery some time ago with Dr. Craig Brigham in 2012. Unfortunately, he died and I learned of it when I called to get a definitive surgical date. He was one of the top 50 and had been my doctor since 2002.

I have come to the conclusion that, basically, we have to go by the credentials of our proposed surgeon. Yes, it does definitely help for those who have had surgery with the proposed surgeon to weigh in but I do believe that the "rating" comes from their results and we may never speak to all of those who comprise the "results".

I also appreciate the fact that Dr. Arlet is a "double threat"--someone at my luncheon group spoke up and said you also need a neurosurgeon in attendance--and was flapped when I said he was had expertiese in Neurosurgery.

lordswild
07-13-2014, 05:30 PM
I was 70 and 40 (2012) according to Brigham and after his death, Hey. I will receive the update soon--new X-rays at Penn. I had no problems and surgery was never anticipated when I first saw Dr. B in 2002 until a surgery in 2010 and the use of a cam walking boot the same year which did something to my spine in three days!!! and the pain back mid thigh up to my bohinny has been outrageous ever since (this is from one who gave birth twice and miscarried once without any meds). Dana knew what had been done. He said I will have metal from top to bottom.

They both examined me, apparently went into conference, he returned, was very cheery and asked when I wanted my surgery--I said--Sept/Oct due to the heat, etc, he said they would contact me to set it up.

I felt great.

The record thing set me off and it is something that I will have to reconcile. My enormous concern is the fact that a large part of the records have been purged from all sources. Further, I had been very specific about the nurse's need to return my records that day--there was plenty of time.

Because I am a planner, I would like to get a date set. The people who are going to help me will help me whenever. I also have a dog and a horse and they need a plan.

Also, as I indicated, I have a few questions. I do feel that the holiday interferred and do plan to call tomorrow.

Thanks for the tips--PLEASE don't mind sending anything at all that you think of: clothing (sweats?), planning to wear hats if cannot wash hair nightly--ANYBODY within reading distance--I am exercising EVERY morning and as soon as the heat lets up, I intend to begin walking again. River will love that. Right now, it is so hot that I can hardly get out to the barn to feed Mr. Cakes.

I can think of one question for any one right now: if you were on medication for pain, did you have to reduce or stop that medication prior to surgery. Would VERY much appreciate answer to this...Dr. A did not say, Dr. B wanted everyone off or reduced to nearly nothing.

springchicken
07-14-2014, 08:01 AM
Thanks for the tips--PLEASE don't mind sending anything at all that you think of: clothing (sweats?), planning to wear hats if cannot wash hair nightly--ANYBODY within reading distance--I am exercising EVERY morning and as soon as the heat lets up, I intend to begin walking again. River will love that. Right now, it is so hot that I can hardly get out to the barn to feed Mr. Cakes.

I can think of one question for any one right now: if you were on medication for pain, did you have to reduce or stop that medication prior to surgery. Would VERY much appreciate answer to this...Dr. A did not say, Dr. B wanted everyone off or reduced to nearly nothing.


What a shame about the death of your previous doctor.

Keep up the exercise! THat's great. I wore lots of sweats. Loose-fitting clothing. It might help to have button down shirts so you don't have to put them over your head, but I didn't really have a problem with that. Or at least tops with big neck holes.

I wasn't on narcotics, but like Jess mentioned, I heard that it is a little easier if you're not on them. You will have to stop NSAIDs (aspirin, aleve, ibuprofen, etc) about 2 weeks before surgery as they are blood thinners.

lordswild
07-16-2014, 05:16 PM
"Spring"

The Doctor and Dana are on vacation--spoke with his office today--she suggested that we leave a message on Dana's machine which we did!!!