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mbeckoff
12-29-2009, 06:05 PM
Hello,

I am finally having surgery at the end of February /Middle of March.

I am a female 50 years old living in central NC

I am very nervous.

I have so many questions.

I have fibromalygia and so many issues and pain associated with it as well

What did you take to the hospital that you needed?

What did you not have there that you needed ?

What did you wear when you first came home?

Did you go to a rehab before you came home?

What kind of chair did you find most comfortable?

How long was it until you could wash your hair?

What could you never do again once you had the surgery?

These are the first of my questions.I am sure that I will have many more

Melissa

Vali
12-29-2009, 07:17 PM
Hello,

I am finally having surgery at the end of February /Middle of March.

I am a female 50 years old living in central NC

I am very nervous.

I have so many questions.

I have fibromalygia and so many issues and pain associated with it as well

What did you take to the hospital that you needed?
Lip Balm, moisturiser and baby oil, because the air cond dries out your skin

What did you not have there that you needed ?
Sanitary wear, forgot it - possibility of getting menses after surgery

What did you wear when you first came home?
PJ's - short ride home (15mins), practically lived in them unless i had to go out or go for my daily walk.

Did you go to a rehab before you came home?
I didn't go to rehab - just told to walk half hour everyday.

What kind of chair did you find most comfortable?
A frim chair with two armrests to help you get up. Leg muscles are sometimes weak after surgery.

How long was it until you could wash your hair?
I showered on day 2 post-op and washed my hair then. The nurses dried it for me though. Just having a shower makes you very tired.

What could you never do again once you had the surgery?
I'm slowly getting back to doing all the things i used to do, but some are done in a different way. As yet, i haven't found something i can't do, however, this question could pertain to a lot of things. The only thing maybe would be, that i am not allowed to play netball anymore!

These are the first of my questions.I am sure that I will have many more


Melissa

Hi Melissa,
I hope this helps. You will indeed have many more questions and the people on this forum are awesome, just ask and you shall receive!

LindaRacine
12-29-2009, 07:43 PM
What did you take to the hospital that you needed?


I have a list of items on my website:
http://www.scoliosislinks.com/PreparingforSurgery.htm


What did you wear when you first came home?

Tshirts (I had a postop brace) and sweatpants

Did you go to a rehab before you came home?

No

What kind of chair did you find most comfortable?

anything that didn't have a cushy seat

How long was it until you could wash your hair?

13 wretched days

What could you never do again once you had the surgery?

put on pantyhose without having to lay on my back in bed

mbeckoff
12-29-2009, 07:52 PM
Thanks so much

Just finding this forum has been great

I have much anxiety from the fibro and now with the surgery it is just incredible.

Everyone here seems to be so knowledgeable

Melissa

mbeckoff
12-29-2009, 08:03 PM
Thanks for the answers

Another question already

My doctor did noit say any thing about a brace.

Why or why not would a person wear one?

Thanks

Melissa

LindaRacine
12-29-2009, 08:13 PM
Thanks for the answers

Another question already

My doctor did noit say any thing about a brace.

Why or why not would a person wear one?

Thanks

Melissa
Hi Melissa...

Some surgeons brace all their patients. Some surgeons brace none of their patients. Postop braces used to be more common, but the current implants are so secure that many surgeons feel there's no need for one.

Regards,
Linda

mbeckoff
12-29-2009, 08:15 PM
I see.

I am creating a list for my suregoen and here goes another question on it

Thanks

Melissa

JenniferG
12-29-2009, 11:55 PM
What did you take to the hospital that you needed?
Loose PJs, and a gown for walking round the halls. Toothbrush, hairbrush, rubber soled slip on slippers/scuffs for walking. A going home outfit - had to walk a fair way to the carpark.

What did you not have there that you needed ?
Nothing. Your needs are very few really. I could not be bothered with computers, phones, mp3s, nor reading. Some people say wear satin pjs and I took one pair. I could not sit propped up in them to watch tv or talk to visitors, because I kept sliding down.

What did you wear when you first came home?
t shirt with trackpants. No bra. Didn't wear a bra for several weeks.

Did you go to a rehab before you came home?
No.

What kind of chair did you find most comfortable?
A firm one that you don't sink into.

How long was it until you could wash your hair?
Day 4, the day after the epidurals were taken out. I once said it was Day 2 but it couldn't have been because I still had all the tubes and wires attached until Day 4. I blame the drugs.

What could you never do again once you had the surgery?
I really struggle with socks. I have difficulty bringing my foot up to the opposite knee. In fact I have difficult raising my knee up past about right angles to my body. I couldn't entertain the idea of pantyhose! I shave with a razor taped to a wooden spoon handle.

Did I have a brace? No.

Many more questions will come to mind, so ask away!

lapieper
12-30-2009, 05:15 AM
I didn't need or want anything after the surgery until about Day 3 or 4. At which time I was moved to a rehab ward, where physical therapy was available. Nothing strenuous, they just wanted to make sure I was aware of restrictions (lifting) and was able to walk and do a few steps. I was in rehab for 4 days, but pt only available 2, due to weekend.... Wore a brace for 6-8 weeks, but not long and not very often as I was pretty inactive, all in all. Hard chair to sit in, arms help. I did need a toothbrush and lip balm more than anything else while in the hospital. I used a bed jacket a lot, because I was so very cold. (Still am very cold.) I washed my hair as soon as I was allowed to. My hair is very short, and easy to take care of! I don't think there's anything I can't do now, right off the top of my head. I ride on the back of my hubby's Harley, and I have ridden, although am currently restricted due to additional surgery for six weeks. Too cold anyway! We hope to take a road trip this summer! Have been limited distance/duration ever since the surgery, so we are really antsy to hit the pavement!

Keep asking those questions! They'll help relieve your concerns as you get closer to surgery. Ask away!

hamlette
12-30-2009, 06:45 AM
Hi!

I just had my surgery - today is the 3 week mark. About the brace, during all my pre-op consultations my doctors said I would need to wear one for three months, but when I woke up after the operation and asked for it, they said that I didn't need one after all. I'm very grateful not to have to wear one, although yesterday me and my Mum went to town for coffee and I was terrified of getting jostled by people who wouldn't know that there was anything wrong with me, and kind of wished I had the brace as a sort of warning sign for other people!

In hospital the only thing I took that I actually used was a radio (with sound block headphones) that was a real godsend after the third or fourth day when I started to get a bit better. It blocked out the nasty hospital sounds like beeping and I could listen to comedy programmes and the news and keep up to date, or just drift of listening to music. Sometimes I just had the headphones in with the radio off to act as earplugs. Hospitals can be noisy places!

After day 3 I was allowed to change out of the hospital gown into my own pyjamas which was lovely - the hospital was quite cold so I had warm ones. You will definitely need a good pair of slippers.

I was grateful to have my mobile phone with me as well.

I didn't bring any sanitary towels or products as I wasn't due at all, but the nurses told me that in 95% of cases the operation brings on early menstruation, and sure enough it did - and all I had to use were the really horrible nappy/(diaper)-type pants that the hospital provided which I hated, so I would have brought those if I had known!!

When you come out of hospital be sure to get a grabber, as you can't bend down. I didn't have one for the first two days and it was really frustrating having to ask for help putting my knickers on!!

Good luck!!!! Its amazing when you look in the mirror the first time and you are straight!

mbeckoff
12-30-2009, 09:16 AM
You folks are so amazing .You are making me feel that I can almost make it it thru the several weeks of waiting without having a nervous breakdown. I am so used to taking care of others that it is weird to think of others taking care of me. My one big concern is that both of my children who are multiple special needs children and I just hope and pray that with me being away and having this surgery does not set them off and something happens to them that I cannot help them with. My husband, who is their father is useless in many ways . He himself has mental illness which he is now after 30 years of being pushed to get help by me and 3 years of being pushed to get help by our daughter is going to see a Doctor.He does not care for their needs properly nor does he care to find out what their needs are

Take care

Thanks so much

Melissa

hamlette
12-30-2009, 09:45 AM
Melissa you sound really sweet! They are going to be just as concerned about taking care of you! Is there anyone you can ask to help out just for the first couple of weeks when you're feeling a bit weak? My Mum asked my Grandparents down which was really good for her as it calmed her down a bit and gave me a chance to rest rather than worry about helping her so much around the house. Or if your children have any aunts/really good friends that can stay over and help out?

as for your husband he sounds just like my Dad. We have never had a relationship as he is (we think) clinically depressed and seems to hate everyone, but he refuses to do anything about it even though it upsets my Mum and the rest of our family so much, but in the end it was him who was the one that was able to calm me down the most when I was in pain after my surgery, so you never know, in times of stress people can really surprise you.

mbeckoff
12-30-2009, 10:20 AM
Thanks for saying that. Most of the time people do say that I am sweet except when it comes to my children, when it comes to getting them help in school or with the medical profession then I become a bear.

As to help, I do have some really great friends who will help me. I have no relatives at all. I don't know how much you know about the geography of the US. I had lived my entire life in the North East . 22 years in NY and 24 years in NJ and then my Dad , who had lived with us after my Mom died , passed away. We had always wanted to move South so we did it .In 2007 we moved to Central North Carolina and We love it here. The people are wonderful and usually the weather is great, except for this week and last.

The only living relative I have is my brother who is currently suing me over my Dad's money. My husband has his parents who will do nothing for me.

So as my Dad always said you can pick your friends anyway.

So I have friends who are already saying :what can I do?"

It is just hard for me to accept help when I am always the one giving help"


Thanks for all the great advice

Melisssa















Melissa you sound really sweet! They are going to be just as concerned about taking care of you! Is there anyone you can ask to help out just for the first couple of weeks when you're feeling a bit weak? My Mum asked my Grandparents down which was really good for her as it calmed her down a bit and gave me a chance to rest rather than worry about helping her so much around the house. Or if your children have any aunts/really good friends that can stay over and help out?

as for your husband he sounds just like my Dad. We have never had a relationship as he is (we think) clinically depressed and seems to hate everyone, but he refuses to do anything about it even though it upsets my Mum and the rest of our family so much, but in the end it was him who was the one that was able to calm me down the most when I was in pain after my surgery, so you never know, in times of stress people can really surprise you.

JenniferG
12-30-2009, 02:35 PM
Melissa, I found that people really come to the fore for you after this surgery. I think it might bring out the best in your husband and kids. But if not, I am glad you have friends. It's very hard to be looked after when you're used to looking after others, but it will be necessary for a short while. When you've recovered, you will look more fondly on those who cared about you during this time. I feel much closer to my partner, kids and a couple of close friends, since surgery.

Hamlette, you are doing so well for three weeks! I didn't leave hospital until day 19, and it was another week or so before I could even sit at a computer. You young people amaze me with your resilience. I hope the remainder of your recovery is smooth.

kt2009
12-30-2009, 05:11 PM
Melissa,

One little tidbit...ask one of your friends to go to this website and set up an account for you...it's free. You could do it yourself, but ask someone else to organize it since you sound pretty busy. It's http://www.lotsahelpinghands.com/
and it's a great way to organize meals, kids' care, etc. I was able to check the website and would know who was cooking what for me and when. It sounds like you might need help with more than just meals.

Also, buy a raised toilet seat. Sounds strange, but I used it for weeks! I also had tons of pillows in my bed for positioning and a pad of paper on my nightstand to keep track of when I took meds and how much. Though hard chairs are easier to sit in, I always had a little pillow to rest my back on when I sat in a hard chair.

mbeckoff
12-30-2009, 08:23 PM
Thanks I will get a friend to set it up as soon as I get a surgical date

It looks like it could really be a lot of help

Melissa

mbeckoff
01-02-2010, 09:49 PM
Hope every one had a Happy New Year

1- How do you shave your legs and your underarms?

2- What do you wear for PT?

3- What kind of chair is the most comfortable chair to sit in when I want to sew? Right now, I use a secretary chair with arms on it .Will that work after the surgery?

Thanks for all of your advice

Melissa

Singer
01-03-2010, 11:20 AM
Ask away!

1. Shaving under the arms was no problem, but my husband shaved my legs with an electric razor for quite a while..

2. For PT, I wore yoga pants or baggy sweat pants with an elastic waist...my belly was swollen for a few months. I was always cold so I wore layers on top..usually a tank top with a hoodie.

3. My favorite chair was and still is a small, firmly upholstered armchair. Everyone's different, but I couldn't recline for a long time....I could sit up straight or lie down straight and that was it. Pillows were my friend. I still hate sitting on our sofa, which is too soft and squishy for me to get out of comfortably. I still carry an inflatable pillow in my purse for the times when I have to sit in a hard-backed chair or a restaurant booth.

mbeckoff
01-03-2010, 12:36 PM
Thanks for the quick reply .

I was under the impression that putting your hands over your head was a no-no or was that just in the very beginning?

Also did the waistband bother your back or was it further down ? Why was your belly swollen?

When did you start PT? How many weeks after surgery?

Thanks again for

Melissa

debbei
01-03-2010, 12:51 PM
Thanks for the quick reply .

I was under the impression that putting your hands over your head was a no-no or was that just in the very beginning?

Also did the waistband bother your back or was it further down ? Why was your belly swollen?

When did you start PT? How many weeks after surgery?

Thanks again for

Melissa

raising your arms over head was one of the earliest PT exercises that the in-home PT had me do. It wasn't so hard to put on a lose over-the-head shirt. I made sure to buy larger yoga pants and sweat pants so I had no pressure on my incision, and they didn't bother me at all.

mbeckoff
01-03-2010, 01:22 PM
raising your arms over head was one of the earliest PT exercises that the in-home PT had me do. It wasn't so hard to put on a lose over-the-head shirt. I made sure to buy larger yoga pants and sweat pants so I had no pressure on my incision, and they didn't bother me at all.

Is raising my arms over my head a painful thing to do?

So I don't need to have all button up the front clothing?
Just very soft things that are bigger than I normally wear with a drawstring waistband?

How long after surgery does PT start?

Melissa

debbei
01-03-2010, 03:04 PM
Is raising my arms over my head a painful thing to do?
Melissa

It wasn't so bad for me, and as a matter of fact, it is a good exercise to prevent frozen shoulders (which I got anyway and then needed further PT to deal with).


So I don't need to have all button up the front clothing? Just very soft things that are bigger than I normally wear with a drawstring waistband?

Nope, not all of my things were button-up. And yes, soft larger sizes with a waistband were a bonus.



How long after surgery does PT start?

A PT came to the house for the first 2 weeks to do little things with me, most of which I found useless. Other than that, I walked every day a minimum of 30 minutes. The dr. gave me my prescription for outpatient PT at my 6 week appointment; I started around 8 weeks.

Radiogirl
01-03-2010, 10:18 PM
Chris,
Why was your belly swollen? Is that normal? How long did it last and how bad?

Thanks!
Laura

JenniferG
01-04-2010, 12:52 AM
Is raising my arms over my head a painful thing to do?

I think it's different for everyone. I had no trouble raising my arms over my head.

So I don't need to have all button up the front clothing?

I guess if you have trouble raising your arms, you need button up tops. Perhaps take both until you know whether you can do that or not.

Just very soft things that are bigger than I normally wear with a drawstring waistband?

I wore elasticated waistbands which generally didn't bother me. Only wearing a bra bothered me.

How long after surgery does PT start?

I never had PT.

mbeckoff
01-04-2010, 09:06 AM
Thanks for all of the great information that you guys are offering me

Melissa

JenniferG
01-04-2010, 04:10 PM
Ask anything that comes into mind. I know I did and the responses were very helpful.

Singer
01-04-2010, 08:30 PM
Hi Laura, just saw your question. My belly was swollen because I had a very long anterior incision that cut across my torso, so my abdominal muscles were cut. It took about 3 months for the swelling to go down.

Radiogirl
01-04-2010, 08:43 PM
Chris - Yikes! That sounds painful, having the scar across your torso. I guess I should be happy I will just have one very big scar down my back. Someone suggested I get a tattoo over it - like a vine or something! haah! Don't think I will do that though!

Laura

Doodles
01-04-2010, 10:43 PM
Even with all posterior I still had swelling in front & it was very hard and sore and/or numb for a long time. I guess that sounds weird to be sore and numb but that's how I remember it. If finally feels more normal. I guess just from moving stuff around to insert the 2 cages I needed must cause this. Anterior would also. Janet

debbei
01-05-2010, 07:15 AM
Even with all posterior I still had swelling in front & it was very hard and sore and/or numb for a long time. I guess that sounds weird to be sore and numb but that's how I remember it. If finally feels more normal. I guess just from moving stuff around to insert the 2 cages I needed must cause this. Anterior would also. Janet

For the first month or two, I also had swelling in the abdomen, and I was posterior only. I think that was normal, at least it's what the nurses told me.