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Thread: 3.5 months post-op

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    83

    3.5 months post-op

    Lets start with my lean... It's still there... Dr seems to think it will straighten over time... I'm still quite skeptical. So I avoid mirrors and tight clothing. Something that I thought was a thing of the past, but alas, here I am. What is good is that I am able to shift myself over (since I'm only fused to L1) when I do this... I look quite normal... So for short periods of time... I can "fake my straightness" as I like to call it.
    Pics are of me regular, and holding myself straight.
    Pain-- pain seems to have found me... Being painless before and after surgery, I thought I was a lucky one... Unfortunately it has caught up with me... Just between the shoulder blades. Aching, some shooting, burning, but mostly aching and quite uncomfortable. I think it's also the rainy cold weather.
    Plus side of surgery- I really don't feel limited in my flexibility because they were able to stop at L1- I feel really fortunate to have had the surgery now, instead of later with more levels fused.
    Overall- I'm sad about my overall appearance but I was sad about that before surgery so I seem to be back at square one. If it straightens out, awesome, if not, I'm not any worse off now then I was before...
    Just trying to get back to positive thinking.
    -sara

    lean 1212.jpg holding straight1212.jpg

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    2,262
    Hope you and yours have a merry Christmas
    Melissa

    Fused from C2 - sacrum 7/2011

    December 8, 2014 - Another Broken Rod Surgery

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Yacolt, WA
    Posts
    1,598
    Sara: It must be hard to sort this out. I would suggest giving it some time and see what happens. Maybe things will straighten out by themselves, or PT might help you. I wish you the best and a very Merry Christmas and the best for the new year.
    HUGS to you, 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

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    83

    6 months out-- still crooked - rotation returning

    well, let's see. Next week I'll have my 6 month visit with the doctor...
    I'm still very much crooked... my rotation seems to be coming back with a vengence. Rib hump, coming back slowly, but the lumbar (which was not fused) seems to be worse than before surgery. Seems the rotation is causing the curve to come back... I thought there was STEEL in there!!!
    I look horrid. Still leaning to the side. Honestly worse than before surgery, at least before i was 'balanced'
    So- next week we will go over the fact that I still have no feeling in my Lumbar... the part that was NOT fused. Left Lumbar still swollan.
    Right shoulder blade winging again, and front of shoulder rounded back to its old position.
    The fact that I'm still crooked and its NOT straightening,
    The fact that i'll be told, that I'm ONLY 6 months out and I can still change... Well. I'm not changing. if anything i'm getting worse...
    The upside. I have no pain.

    Sorry- this was more of a rant. I'm done ranting. I'll let you know what the doctor says on Wednesday...

    Is there any adult on this forum that isn't fused to sacrum that can relate? Or parent of a kid that can relate?
    thanks

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    3,263
    I'm so sorry about your disappointment. I don't blame you for being disappointed given the rotation is returning etc. But I'm glad you don't have pain now, I think earlier in the thread, you did. I will be interested in hearing what the doctor says. I hope he doesn't just fob you off again. I don't think he should, there's obviously a reason your rotation is returning. Good luck!
    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

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    9,311
    King14, I think you deserve some answers. You should be evening out, not getting worse at this point. Your case is so unusual though and I have to wonder if your surgeon has ever seen another like it to know what would happen. Certainly trying to save your lumbar is a noble task and worth the shot in my opinion.

    Good luck at the appointment.

    Sharon
    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."

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,707
    I know how disappointed you must be. I hope you get some answers from your 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/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    83

    9 month update

    Well lets see..... 9 month appt today. ;/ - I did straighten out some...(I was leaning after surgery) i'm not perfect, but I wasn't before hand.... So that's good. BUT I am rotating more. I am twisting above and below my fusion. I was already rotated below, but i'm now rotating above. Head tilted to the side. etc, etc.
    So - that's where I'm at. My pelvis is tilted, but so is my sacrum, so fusing lower, unless i go to my pelvis won't correct anthing. The rotation in my pelvis is causing my hip to be SO tight.

    The rib hump is coming back becuase I'm rotating more.... Alas- what to do... nothing really.

    I haven't posted in the happy or not happy thread because there's no point in changing whats already passed. My selective fusion didn't really correct anything - it corrected my T-spine, but has caused more rotation, and I still have the residual curve in the Lumbar.

    Dr is now thinking shoe lift (again), he threw that around at 3 months) Not sure what to do or who to listen to. Shoe lift may or may not cause problems in my T-spine...

    Ahh- we'lll see what happens at 12 month post op.

    Pain level - varies from nothing to 8/9 - depends on the day.

    And WHY doesn't insurance cover body work, massage myofascial work, the oNLY thing that makes me feel better. No they only cover Narcotics....

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    83

    1 year post op selective fusion for double curve

    Not sure where to start so ill dive right in. Pre surgery 50/50
    Post surgery(fused T4-L1) 16 over 30 with severe lateral shift.
    Yesterday fusion still good and intact spine at 16 over 19... Significant change from June (where I was still 16/30) I don't know what happened in the last 3 months but ill take it .... I'm hoping that ill be one of those cases that continues to get better as the years go on.
    Now... Visually - still sporting my shift... But it has improved since the surgery. So... Slowly but surely??? Who knows...
    Had an appt with dr hey about a month ago and he is under the watch and wait because my shift is so large may effect other things as time goes by.
    Saw my surgeon yesterday and comparatively from start to finish I have had drastic changes so he is not worried about the shift at all- and is happy we preserved so much of the L spine.
    Ill update in a year as it seems that's when everything will really sort itself out...
    So to all of you who said I takes TIME--- I concede--- it does (smiley face)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    9,311
    Wow that's some good progress! The unfused portion wants to balance the fused portion so I am not surprised it decreased to near where the T curve is.

    I would have invited you to lunch if I knew you were in town. :-)

    Last, for the remaining shift, have you trying somatic shifting? It's a subset of somatic healing. :-)
    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."

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Tampa, FL
    Posts
    63
    So glad to hear things improved. I can only imagine how relieved you must feel. Thanks for the update!
    Mom to son with new straight spine 8/15/2013 T16, L16
    Pre op T65, L?
    diagnosed 2/21/13 T55, L42

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Indianapolis area
    Posts
    974
    Great news, King! Happy for you!!!
    age 48
    80* thoracolumbar; 40* thoracic
    Reduced to ~16* thoracolumbar; ~0* thoracic
    Surgery 3/14/12 with Dr. Lenke in St. Louis, T4 to S1 with pelvic fixation
    Broken rods 12/1/19; scheduled for revision fusion L1-L3-4 with Dr. Lenke 2/4/2020
    Not "confused" anymore, but don't know how to change my username.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    San Jose, CA
    Posts
    571
    I am happy for you too!
    I am stronger than scoliosis, and won't let it rule my life!
    45 years old - diagnosed at age 7
    A/P surgery on March 5/7, 2013 - UCSF

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Yacolt, WA
    Posts
    1,598

    The good, the bad, and the ugly

    King, I read your entry and it brought to mind a thought that I had earlier in the day. I am 5months postop and some things work so much better than before surgery, and others....not so well. In general, I am
    Improving s-l-o-w-l-y...much slower than in want. Call me impatient too.

    I have decided that there are 2 choices: chose to believe that I will improve over the next year OR chose to believe that I am stuck in a body with limitations that I do not want.

    I am choosing the former.

    Wishing you the best of luck in healing.
    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

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,707
    You will not only improve (gradually) during your first year, but even after year one and year two. I really figured that I had maxed out at a year, but not so. It takes the body a long time to heal after this major surgery and even longer to regain muscle strength and some flexibility.
    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/

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