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Thread: My turn to Straighten up and Fly Right!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    31

    My turn to Straighten up and Fly Right!

    I have been following and learning from your forum for two years now and am about to have surgery on September 24 with Dr. Lenke. A huge “Thank You!” to all of you as I owe you so much. I am 74 years old (yes, it happens) and was diagnosed with scoliosis (thoracic) at 13 – past my growth spurt and at my adult height. My back didn’t hurt then and still doesn’t. So I put it “behind me,” as I like to say.

    In my 40’s I had a thoracic curve of about 30 degrees. But in my 60’s (trying on clothes in a department store), I could see that the small indent on the left side of my lower back had grown to be a big indent. I don’t remember how I found your forum, but am very grateful that I did.

    My initial consult with Dr. Lenke was on November 16, 2011 and my Pre-Op appointment was Wednesday, August 15, 2012. I have never tried to post on a forum before, but look forward to meeting you all on the Forum.

    All the Best,
    Angie

    Surgery Planned with Dr. Lenke on Sept. 24, 2012 – 74 years
    Thoracic (66 degrees), Lumbar (66 Degrees),
    Idiopathic Scoliosis, Kyphosis
    Surgery Planned with Dr. Lenke on Sept. 24, 2012
    Posterior Spinal Fusion T1/2 – Sacrum
    Last edited by AngieM; 09-07-2012 at 09:11 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Yacolt, WA
    Posts
    1,577

    Welcome!

    Welcome, Angie! We have a great group of us "older" persons with scoliosis on the forum. I am 66 and have not had surgery as I was only diagnosed last year although I had pain much before that and tons of physical therapy. What a surprise! I am certain that you are probably in pretty good shape and I think, from what I have heard that you have an awesome surgeon! Best of luck to you!
    Another twisted sister, Susan
    Adult Onset Degenerative Scoliosis @65, 25* T & 36* L w/ 11.2 cm coronal balance; T kyphosis 90*; Severe disc degen T & L stenosis

    2013: T3- S1 Fusion w/ ALIF L4-S1/XLIF L2-4, PSF T4-S1 2 surgeries
    2014: Hernia @ ALIF repaired; Emergency screw removal Spinal Cord Injury T4,5 sec to PJK
    2015: Revision Broken Bil T & L rods and no fusion: 2 revision surgeries; hardware P. Acnes infection
    2016: Ant/Lat Lumbar diskectomy w/ 4 cages + BMP + harvested bone
    2018: Removal L4,5 screw

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    3,263
    Welcome Angie! I'm glad you've learned a lot from the forum, I think we all do. How amazing that you still have no pain. If we must have scoliosis, that's the kind we all want. Are you having pelvic fixation? If you have any last minute questions, fire away. Wishing you the best of luck on the 24th. Please let us know how you go.

    PS you've done a great job for a forum newbie - signature and all!
    Surgery March 3, 2009 at almost 58, now 63.
    Dr. Askin, Brisbane, Australia
    T4-Pelvis, Posterior only
    Osteotomies and Laminectomies
    Was 68 degrees, now 22 and pain free

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    31

    Thank you, Susan!

    Quote Originally Posted by susancook View Post
    Welcome, Angie! We have a great group of us "older" persons with scoliosis on the forum. I am 66 and have not had surgery as I was only diagnosed last year although I had pain much before that and tons of physical therapy. What a surprise! I am certain that you are probably in pretty good shape and I think, from what I have heard that you have an awesome surgeon! Best of luck to you!
    Another twisted sister, Susan
    I am, probably, the older of the "older" persons on the forum and that's the reason I felt I had to join in. Of course, I have no idea how I will be able to handle this surgery (which is going to be the biggest challenge ever for me!). No matter, I need to let you all know what scoliosis surgery is like at my age. I owe you that, because I wouldn't be taking this step without the help you all gave me.

    I am getting in better shape all the time, because I have recently started walking more regularly. For my Pre-Op last month I was proud to tell my surgeon that I was now walking 2 miles on the treadmill. When I asked what else I needed to do, he answered "Walk 3 miles!" And now I am.


    All the Best,
    Angie

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Ames, Iowa
    Posts
    1,250
    Angie--
    We're so happy you joined us. How nice that you will share your experiences. It sounds like you are doing all the preparations for mind and body. You already know you've got a great surgeron! Best wishes. Janet
    Janet

    61 years old--57 for surgery

    Diagnosed in 1965 at age of 13--no brace
    Thoracic Curve: 96 degrees to 35 degrees
    Lumbar Curve: 63 degrees to 5 degrees
    Surgery with Dr. Lenke in St. Louis--March 30, 2009
    T-2 to Pelvis, and hopefully all posterior procedure.

    All was posterior along with 2 cages and 6 osteotomies.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,707
    Welcome to the forum, Angie. You have probably already been to Dr. Lenke's web site where a few women in their 70's have amazing before and after pictures. Best of luck with your surgery and recovery. You can do it!
    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/

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    2,245
    Wishing you all the best
    Melissa

    Fused from C2 - sacrum 7/2011

    December 8, 2014 - Another Broken Rod Surgery

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Ukiah CA
    Posts
    891
    Angie! your welcome.
    Kara
    25
    Brace 4-15-05-5-25-06
    Posterior Spinal Fusion 3-10-10
    T4-L2
    Before 50T
    After 20T

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,975
    Angie

    You did it! Your first thread. That’s the easy part. The posts are much harder to do. (smiley face)

    You have had scoliosis for a long time...and with the math correct, you were diagnosed in 1951. Where was this? Did you see a scoli surgeon back then? and who was it and what did they say back then?

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 60, the new 55...
    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

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    129
    Hi Angie,
    My initial consult with Dr. Lenke was the same as yours... I probably was in the waiting room with you! Welcome to the forum. Please keep us updated on your recovery. I am sure we will all be thinking about you. The wait has flown by for me until now and October 5th seems to be taking forever to get here. Take care and best wishes for a successful surgery and recovery!
    Heidi
    Scheduled for surgery with Dr. Lenke Oct. 2012
    53*T 71*L
    Surgery 10/05/2012 T4-pelvis
    Correction: looks perfect! Will find out how perfect at future appointments

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    31

    Thank You, Jennifer!

    Quote Originally Posted by JenniferG View Post
    Welcome Angie! I'm glad you've learned a lot from the forum, I think we all do. How amazing that you still have no pain. If we must have scoliosis, that's the kind we all want. Are you having pelvic fixation? If you have any last minute questions, fire away. Wishing you the best of luck on the 24th. Please let us know how you go.

    PS you've done a great job for a forum newbie - signature and all!
    It's amazing that I feel like I know you, already, after reading all your posts. It's true that my scoliosis has given me no pain, but if I am standing in the kitchen for a really long time, my left lower back gets very tired. If I can sit down for a while, or lie down, that feeling goes away. But still, my back is very distorted, and I am quite out of balance - leaning to the left and forward, Ugh. My surgery is planned from T1/T2 (probably T/2) to Sacrum, with Pelvic Fixation.

    I worried for two years, about whether I would be able to navigate the forum. After my Pre-Op visit, I wrote my introduction and waited until our son came to visit for the weekend to post it for me and show me how to reply. He left this morning and was a great help to Hank (hubby) and I. We exercised, bought a replacement printer, installed a new toilet, took our sailboat out for an afternoon, and posted (last but not least) on your forum!

    All the Best,
    Angie

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    31
    Quote Originally Posted by Doodles View Post
    Angie--
    We're so happy you joined us. How nice that you will share your experiences. It sounds like you are doing all the preparations for mind and body. You already know you've got a great surgeron! Best wishes. Janet
    Thank you, Janet. I am hoping that my hubby, Hank, will be able to post for me after surgery, because we (that includes me) all want to know what surgery will be like at my age. Finding the surgeon that I did is what made the decision easy. And, yes I have been reading up on positivity, meditation, mindfulness, etc.

    All the Best, Angie

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    31
    Quote Originally Posted by golfnut View Post
    Welcome to the forum, Angie. You have probably already been to Dr. Lenke's web site where a few women in their 70's have amazing before and after pictures. Best of luck with your surgery and recovery. You can do it!
    Hi, Karen, and thank you for the warm welcome. I know you well from your posts that I have followed closely. Like me, you haven't had pain before surgery - and you are still very glad you did. Tap dancing and getting back to golf - how great is that! Glad you reminded me about Dr. Lenke's website, I'll check out the older women to see what I can, realistically, expect. Thank you for your best wishes, Angie

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    31
    Quote Originally Posted by mabeckoff View Post
    Wishing you all the best
    Thank you, Melissa, for your good wishes. I am one of the many that have been following you since you first started posting. This has been a really tough journey for you, but you have handled it with courage and resillence. Totally inspiring! Hoping for good outcomes for you going forward. Luv, Angie

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    31
    Quote Originally Posted by kennedy View Post
    Angie! your welcome.
    I hope you are happy with your surgery, Kara. How great to have done it at your age! I had scoliosis then, also, but probably a 30 degree thoracic curve.
    All the Best, Angie
    Last edited by AngieM; 09-09-2012 at 05:15 PM.

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