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Thread: decisions, decisions and different opinions

  1. #46
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    8,903
    Hi Evelyn,

    I re-read your post and think that your height is less than your arm span due to your curvature, not an underlying situation of arm span being longer than a straight spine. The numbers probably would not work out. (see below)

    Marfans, for example, is associated with an arm span that is > 1.05 times height. But now I am wondering if that is due to the prevalence of scoliosis and that shortening the height of this folks. Maybe no Marfans person would have a longer arm span than their height absent the curvature. But to crunch the numbers for a non-scoliotic person, if they were 5' 2", if their arm span was > 1.05 times that then their arm span would be > 5' 5"+. That is well beyond where you likely are even without a curve I think.

    Anyway, depending on how much correction you get, I think you will end up being taller than your arm span.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  2. #47
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,547
    Hi Evelyn

    I think your doing the right thing. I know I waited too long that’s for sure.. I probably could have skipped my very invasive anterior if I had surgery around the age of 40. I have put a lot of thought into this.

    I had “some” sciatica when I was 40.....that was the beginning of my battles for a few years. It ended up getting pretty bad, let me tell you. Man-o-man! They should have changed the definition in Webster’s dictionary under the word pain....

    Example of revised definition

    Pain:
    1. Ed (before his surgeries)
    2. Localized physical suffering associated with bodily disorder.
    3. One who annoys.

    With an 80 degree progressing curve with a tad of sciatica, I don’t think you need to question your decision anymore.

    You will gain a few inches, probably 2-4 inches. Put a mark on the wall before you go in. (smiley face)
    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 58, the new 53...
    Pre surgery curves C12,T70,L70
    ALIF/PLIF T2-Pelvis 01/29/08, 01/31/08 7" pelvic anchors BMP
    Dr Brett Menmuir St Marys Hospital Reno,Nevada

    Bending and twisting pics after full fusion
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...on.&highlight=

    My x-rays
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...2&d=1228779214

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...3&d=1228779258

  3. #48
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    3,745
    to the definition of pain, please add "herniated disc"...

    thanks....
    jess

  4. #49
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,547
    Oh, I forgot....

    If you remember Moe Howard from the 3 stooges, he was asked by a fan what he considered his largest accomplishment, he replied that he was happy that his name was added to the word comedy in the dictionary. I thought that was interesting.

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 58, the new 53...
    Pre surgery curves C12,T70,L70
    ALIF/PLIF T2-Pelvis 01/29/08, 01/31/08 7" pelvic anchors BMP
    Dr Brett Menmuir St Marys Hospital Reno,Nevada

    Bending and twisting pics after full fusion
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...on.&highlight=

    My x-rays
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...2&d=1228779214

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...3&d=1228779258

  5. #50
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Indianapolis area
    Posts
    966
    Thanks Ed, Jess, and everyone for responding.

    I am hoping to gain height because that will make my body weight ideal. LOL. Nothing like moving that BMI without a diet!
    age 44
    80* thoracolumbar; 40* thoracic
    Reduced to ~16* thoracolumbar; ~0* thoracic
    Surgery 3/14/12 with Dr. Lenke, T4 to S1 with pelvic fixation
    Not "confused" anymore, but don't know how to change my username.

  6. #51
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Indianapolis area
    Posts
    966

    Made it through pre-op

    Hi All,
    I'm on my way back from St. Louis for the big pre-op day. I can't believe this is finally here, and now I am posting info for people behind me in the process. I will give the details for those who might want to know how pre-op goes.

    We drove in from Indianapolis last night and stayed at the Parkway. (love the free cookies and popcorn in the lobby, btw.) First appt was 8:10 bone density. You lay down on a bed and they run this scanner sort of thing over you. You don't feel anything. I think the whole thing took 15 min. So, it turns out I have osteopenia. Dr. Lenke said that is not unusual and won't affect the surgery. I am only 40, so might have to take something to help prevent osteoporosis in the future.

    After bone density, it was time for an hour of x-rays. Standing, laying, bending, push-prone. Interestingly, the resident marked my curve at 75 degrees, and Dr. Lenke changed it to 83. He said the margin of error tends to get higher with larger curves. Some of the edges of the vertebrae were fuzzy, making measurement imprecise.

    10 a.m. I met with a couple of residents regarding research studies I will participate in. They are looking at the long-term effects of treated vs. Untreated lumbar scoliosis. Another study is evaluating a drug for neurological complications in surgery on large curves.

    Then Dr lenke came in and talked to my mother, husband and me. He said he would fuse to S1 even though my L5 disk is in good shape because my L5 vertebret is wedge shaped and he thought there was a 66% chance I would be back for revision within 5 years if he didn't.

    In addition, he said it's completely personal choice whether I have the surgery now or wait several years, since I am not in much pain. But he said it is nearly a 100% chance I will have debillatating pain necessitating surgery at some point, so why not get the surgery done now when there are likely to be fewer complications and get a better correction?

    After Dr. Lenke I met with Kelly, his nurse coordinator, and we went over all the logistics. I was surprised to learn people could donate blood for my specific use. I need 6 pints, so I'm not sure whether I will ask friends/family or not.

    By then it was about 1 pm, and I was 30 min late for my pre-op anesthesia appt. I went down there, where they did an EKG, blood pressure, took urine and about 8 vials of blood, and talked to me about my current medications. As I have mentioned previously, Lexapro is OUT, as it thins blood. Reflux mess are okay. Multivitamins are also out because vit E and C thin blood. They then sent me up to the 3rd floor for chest x-rays. I think this is to make sure you don't have any fluid in your lungs, but I'm not sure.

    By then it was 3 p m., and I still had to do a treadmill test in Dr lenke's office. I begged my husband to bring me a roll and drink from St Louis Bread Co., as I had not even had time for lunch!

    Last stop was a 30 minute walk on the treadmill for one of the studies Lenke/Bridwell are doing. They will compare my pain level exercising now with levels 2 years post-op. That will be interesting to see.

    We left St Louis about 4 pm, and are now about 10 minutes from home here at 9 pm in Indy. Have to pick up my kids from two different friends' houses and put us all to bed! An exhausting day, but I am starting to feel prepared for surgery.

    If any of you have made it through this whole message, you are troopers! Hope you got something out of it.

    Best,
    Evelyn
    age 44
    80* thoracolumbar; 40* thoracic
    Reduced to ~16* thoracolumbar; ~0* thoracic
    Surgery 3/14/12 with Dr. Lenke, T4 to S1 with pelvic fixation
    Not "confused" anymore, but don't know how to change my username.

  7. #52
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,797
    I'm exhausted just reading that! ;-) Best of luck!
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Dilbert
    I'm sarcastic... what's your super power? --Unknown
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    If you've signed up and are having trouble posting, please check your spam folder. An email was sent to the email address which you subscribed. You have to follow the instructions in that email. Done that and still having trouble posting? Contact Joe O'Brien at jpobrien@scoliosis.org.

  8. #53
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    2,224
    Glad that all went well and that you got home OK
    Melissa

    Fused from C2 - sacrum 7/2011

    December 8, 2014 - Another Broken Rod Surgery

  9. #54
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    2,755
    Quote Originally Posted by LindaRacine View Post
    I'm exhausted just reading that! ;-) Best of luck!
    Ditto that!

  10. #55
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,690
    Evelyn,
    Reading your journal of the day sure brought back memories. I had an MRI, in addition to all of the other tests you mentioned, which was the worst part of the day i,n my opinion, mainly because of boredom. While the preop tests brought the reality of the surgery front and center after waiting 13 months (and I know you have had your date for a lont time), I felt so much more confident about the surgery because of the thoroughness, but mainly, after meeting with Dr. Lenke. Just hearing him speak about the surgery gave me confidence that I was doing the right thing, although he doesn't push you to have the surgery but gives you the facts. I can't praise him enough. I know there are other excellent scoli doctors in our country, but we are truly fortunate to have him for our surgeon.
    Karen

    Surgery-Jan. 5, 2011-Dr. Lenke
    Fusion T-4-sacrum-2 cages/5 osteotomies
    70 degree thoracolumbar corrected to 25
    Rib Hump-GONE!
    Age-60 at the time of surgery
    Now 66
    Avid Golfer & Tap Dancer
    Retired Kdgn. Teacher

    See photobucket link for:
    Video of my 1st Day of Golf Post-Op-3/02/12-Bradenton, FL
    Before and After Picture of back 1/7/11
    tap dancing picture at 10 mos. post op 11/11/11-I'm the one on the right.
    http://s1119.photobucket.com/albums/k630/pottoff2/

  11. #56
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Dubuque, Iowa
    Posts
    61
    Remembering that all too well Evelyn......it is true that anticipation, worry and waiting are the hardest parts. You are well on your way, one part down *check*.


    Take care,
    Spring
    42 yrs old
    Milwaukee braced 1983 to 1989
    was told my curves would never progress
    at 19yrs old 1991, T30-L38
    2010, T38-L56--progression in one year 2011, T40-L67
    new diagnosis-kyphoscoliosis, DDD, Arthritis, Osteoporosis, 73 degree Kyphosis
    Surgery 1-09-12....10 hrs all posterior T4-sacrum & 2 cages
    Dr. Lenke-St. Louis Mo.
    Surgery to clean out infection 2-10-12
    Revision for broken rods 1-23-14

  12. #57
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    129

    Thanks

    Evelyn,
    Thank you for sharing your story. I am currently scheduled to have surgery with Dr. Lenke in Oct. 2012 and the anticipation is very daunting. I am so glad that you decided to go forward with your surgery. Please keep us updated on your progress. I, too am wanting to do a little painting and replacing carpet. Why, I do not know! I also enjoyed reading your pre op visit and you answered my question as to if I need to stay at the Parkway Hotel overnight. I really like that hotel as well. The cookies are good.
    Take care, you are almost there!
    Heidi
    Last edited by hasteffen; 02-16-2012 at 04:28 PM.

  13. #58
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    161
    Quote Originally Posted by hasteffen View Post
    Evelyn,
    Thank you for sharing your story. I am currently scheduled to have surgery with Dr. Lenke in Oct. 2012 and the anticipation is very daunting. I am so glad that you decided to go forward with your surgery. Please keep us updated on your progress. I, too am wanting to do a little painting and replacing carpet. Why, I do not know! I also enjoyed reading your pre op visit and you answered my question as to if I need to stay at the Parkway Hotel overnight. I really like that hotel as well. The cookies are good.
    Take care, you are almost there!
    Heidi
    It's good to know exactly what to expect. I will doing my pre-op in May
    in St. Louis also. We also have some bath renovations almost
    completed....painting, new shower, and new higher toilet.
    Pam, age 49
    Thoracolumbar curves 80 and 40 corrected to 20 degrees
    April 20, 2012 surgery with Dr. Lenke
    T-3 to sacrum

  14. #59
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Indianapolis area
    Posts
    966

    Appliances?

    Hi All,

    I had to do about six loads of laundry today, and it got me thinking about appliances. I have a front-loader washer and dryer without the pedestal bases. Will I need to get new machines and/or bases? I will have help for 3 months, but I will be fused to sacrum, so...

    Also, when were the rest of you able to load the bottom rack of the dishwasher?

    And finally, for those of you who travelled for surgery, what did you do about the raised toilet seat and hand-held shower in the hotel? I guess I could take the seat I bought for home with me. Not sure about the shower though. I know I'm not supposed to get the incision wet for two weeks.

    Thanks,
    Evelyn
    age 44
    80* thoracolumbar; 40* thoracic
    Reduced to ~16* thoracolumbar; ~0* thoracic
    Surgery 3/14/12 with Dr. Lenke, T4 to S1 with pelvic fixation
    Not "confused" anymore, but don't know how to change my username.

  15. #60
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    2,224
    Quote Originally Posted by Confusedmom View Post
    Hi All,

    I had to do about six loads of laundry today, and it got me thinking about appliances. I have a front-loader washer and dryer without the pedestal bases. Will I need to get new machines and/or bases? I will have help for 3 months, but I will be fused to sacrum, so...

    Also, when were the rest of you able to load the bottom rack of the dishwasher?

    And finally, for those of you who travelled for surgery, what did you do about the raised toilet seat and hand-held shower in the hotel? I guess I could take the seat I bought for home with me. Not sure about the shower though. I know I'm not supposed to get the incision wet for two weeks.

    Thanks,
    Evelyn
    As far as I am concerned the pedestal bases are a must. When you book your hotel room, ask for a handicapped accessible room
    Melissa

    Fused from C2 - sacrum 7/2011

    December 8, 2014 - Another Broken Rod Surgery

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