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letty
08-27-2004, 01:14 PM
Can you please share me the information on your surgery incision like where is it and how long?

Letty

derxz
08-27-2004, 01:17 PM
my incesion starts at my L2 and goes all the way up to my T3, 2 inches below my neck. i'd say somewhere around a foot long. the bone graph incesion is much smaller, only about 7 inches on my hip.

LindaRacine
08-27-2004, 01:22 PM
Hi Letty...

The location and length of the scar is based on the type of surgery (anterior/posterior), and the location and length of the fusion.

I'm fused from T4-L3 in the back, and T12-L3 in the front. I had both anterior and posterior surgeries. My posterior scar is right along my spine in the back, and runs from approximately the top of my shoulder blades to the about 1" below my waist. My anterior scar is a diagonal scar that starts on my left shoulder blade and ends on the left part of my abdomin, about 1" below my waist. In addition, I have about a 3" incision on the upper part of my right buttock, where the bone graft material was harvested.

Regards,
Linda

mish
08-27-2004, 08:29 PM
Linda
Can you feel your back or is the incision area still numb?

derxz
08-27-2004, 11:18 PM
only the scar that runs down my spine is numb, i have total feeling throughout my back. however, on my right upper butt where the bone graft was taken it is more numb. it's not totally numb, but less sensational feeling than my right side

LindaRacine
08-27-2004, 11:47 PM
I have a few small areas on my torso that are numb.

--Linda

marilyn
08-28-2004, 12:44 AM
I am numb under my left breast on the front of my ribcage. and really strange....my right kneecap. told the doc and he looked at me like I was dumb...:)

spincon58
08-28-2004, 11:26 AM
i'm 2 months post-op and my whole back is numb and it feels crazy..i just hope i get some of sensation back

letty
08-31-2004, 03:56 PM
Thanks for all your replies. Just wondering and I forgot to ask the doctor about this re surgery... why is it necessary to open you up at the back and also at the front. Why not just one side? Did they operate on you for 2 times, Linda, like one week apart as others did? Do you still have pain after many years? I hope not. Sorry, I have a lot of questions and I will post them as I think about them if you don't mind.

Letty

LindaRacine
08-31-2004, 04:10 PM
Hi Letty...

Since I was 42 when I had my surgery, my curves were fairly stiff. The surgeon went in from the front to remove discs. That allowed him to get better correction when they attached the hardware.

While I had many relatively pain free years, I have one disc below my fusion that has blown, and causes some lower back pain. I was never 100% free from pain, but most of the pain I've had since surgery never got in the way of doing anything I wanted. 80% of adults report back pain, so it's not surprising to find that adults who have had scoliosis surgery report some amount of back pain. If you expect to be 100% pain free, there's a good likelihood that you'll be disappointed. If your goal is to have less pain, and to have your curve(s) stabilized, you have a good chance of being happy.

Regards,
Linda

Theresa
08-31-2004, 09:31 PM
Hi Letty,

I had anterior/posterior surgery. I'm fused from T2 to the sacrum. My scar goes from my neckbone all the way down my back. My anterior scar goes from under my right breast up around to the tip of my right shoulder blade. I have about a 6 inch scar on my right buttock from bone graphs, (my rib was also used) and a 6 inch scar on the left side of my belly. I am 4 1/2 months post op and doing great! I've flown to Arizona and to Conneticut recently. Tomorrow we are leaving to go to Pensacola, Florida. That's about an 8 hour car drive. I have a lot of numb areas on my back. I have gotten some feeling back just under the skin but you can tell it's still numb deeper down. I am finely getting some stomach muscle back. I'm not sure if lack of stomach muscle control was due to the scoliosis or from my hysterectomy last summer. Feel free to ask any questions. Theresa

LindaRacine
08-31-2004, 10:22 PM
Hi Theresa...

For areas of numbness, try rubbing objects of different texture (brushes, feathers, rolling pin, etc.) over the numb areas, while imagining what they would feel like. It really worked for me.

Also, if your tummy bulge is uneven, you may have what is often referred to as an incisional hernia. It's not a true hernia, but an area of muscle atrophy due to lack of blood supply to the tissue. I think they're almost always permanent without corrective surgery. I had mine repaired. It worked great for a few years, and then gradually returned.

Good luck on your long road trip.

Regards,
Linda

mish
09-01-2004, 05:57 PM
Hi all

Theresa, can you elaborate on what you meant by "lack of stomach muscle control ". I don't know what you meant.

My surgery is in Oct ... A/P too ... so you got me curious :-)

momoflacrosse
09-01-2004, 07:32 PM
Hi everyone:

No I haven't had spine surgery but I already have several areas on my back - especially on my right shoulder blade that are numb.
They have been like this for at least 20 years so I guess I have some nerve issues. I also had two C-sections and another surgery on that same incision and the area above that scar has never regained feeling and it has been 20 years . So I guess what I am saying here is that those of you with new scars will probably always have some areas that will remain numb.
And hey I haven't posted for awhile so hi to all - Connie - I hope all is going well , Theresa - I hope that you are over the worst and wv1 else hope you had a great summer and here's to a great labour day. I have joined a few other groups on Yahoo and MSN but this is by far the greatest group of crooked and straightened folks I get to interact with.

Cheers and Hugs

Nancy

Theresa
09-01-2004, 09:28 PM
Hey Mish,

You might recall in alot of my old posts I talked about not being able to stand up straight after the surgery. Well it seems like this week muscles are starting to work better. I am able to hold myself in an unright very straight position for a good part of the day. Last summer I had a hysterectomy due to very large fibroids. The doctor said it was like I was 5 months pregnant. The surgery was done vaginally but I hadn't really started doing any abdominal exercises due to my back hurting. Some of the back pain that I was having was from the tumors. Needless to say, my stomach muscles were shot! I found out the end of January that I was going to be having the spinal fusion the beginning of April. I did have a plate put in the sacrum area for the fusion, so I have a six inch incision on the left side of my belly. This past week I've been able to lift both my legs off the bed a couple of inches and hold them in place. Since I have been able to do that is when I've been able to stand up straight. I don't know if I have just confused you even more?!

spincon58
09-02-2004, 04:09 AM
Hay Nancy, don't leave us..we need u here on this siight!!!I'm doing great!! I went to physcially therapy and i was embrassed how high he lifted my leg? I said it didn't hurt..so he kept lifting LOL..thats because I trained prior years from surgery..anyway..besides the pain and stiffness from waking up in bed, and just the late evening stress of standing all day is what causes some pain...Theresa, U sound like your doing much much better...it must be all those vacations u took in the summer....Have they decided about your job?do u start in september? I hope so..Mish..congrats on a surgery date..the scar i have is straight down my back from tip to neck and butt...it is numb and some spots are returning its feel, definitely werid sensations...Its just my right shoulder and my neck that is causing pain..when u have surgery everything gets shifted around and i guess my neck is out of alimement.....i C the dr. on the 9th.....so enjoy the last days of summer everyone !!!!

leyvtl
09-08-2004, 10:01 PM
Hi Letty,
My name is Tiffany. Im 18 and have had 3 surgeries for my scoliosis. My first surgery the doctor cut me on the side (parts are still numb). The second time they cut me all the way down my back (pretty much my whole back is numb) the third one they used the same one on my side (of course, still numb)


God Bless,

mish
09-09-2004, 05:29 PM
Letty

How long has it been since surgery?

I had hip surgery in 20 yrs ago, and now, the upper is still partially numb to the touch.

pink_lady
01-22-2005, 02:14 AM
im just curious... does the scars look bad? i mean, if you're wearing a bikini. and has anyone had those keloid scars?

blairf83
01-22-2005, 09:56 AM
My scar from my fusion (T2 to L1) runs from just below the end of my neck to my waist.
The bone graft site is different from most I've seen- it is only a couple inches long and is vertical.
I'm only a little over a year post op, but most of my back is either numb or really hypersensitive (toweling my back off after I shower is painful at times).
The bone graft site is also numb, and an inch wide band runs around my hip to the front, and then runs down my outer thigh.

marianm803
01-22-2005, 05:05 PM
I don't understand why your back goes numb after the surgery. Aren't the nerves in your skin still alive?
Marian

LindaRacine
01-22-2005, 05:52 PM
Marian...

I actually don't know the answer as to whether the nerves in the skin are still alive, or even if there are nerves in the skin. However, the surgeon has to cut through a lot of tissue to get to the spine, and there are a lot of nerves on the way there.

--Linda

scoliosisguy
01-23-2005, 10:09 AM
How do they get by or past all your vital organs to perform the surgery?Do they remove them and replace them,or do they somehow get around them? Do you have any complications with any vital organs due to the anterior approach?

LindaRacine
01-23-2005, 12:23 PM
Scoliosisguy...

First, I want to clarify that this is only an issue if anterior surgery is performed. I think that the only things in the way of the spine from the back is skin, tissue, nerves, and fat.

For anterior surgery of the thoracic spine, only the lungs are in the way. While it's called "anterior" surgery, the surgery is actually performed on the side of the body of the vertebrae, so only the lungs are in the way. For surgery on the lumbar spine, I believe that the abdominal organs are pushed off (retracted) to the side. I've never actually seen this done, but I recall a surgeon telling me that the abdominal contents were not removed from the abdominal cavity.

Regards,
Linda

Lavinia
01-24-2005, 02:06 AM
Connie - I am also 2 months post-op and have a large numb area on my back, and I agree that although it is not pain, it is a very unpleasant sensation. Apparently it may be due to the nerves not yet having grown back - just knowing this helped me to some extent. My osteopath told me they grow at abou 2 mm a month, so with such radical incisions they have to take time.

I have found that the front area has regained most of its sensation, which gives me hope. Apart from that, hot water bottles and relaxation also seem to help to some extent.

Let me know how your recovery is going - it would be good to compare notes!

Best wishes,

Lavinia