Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Looking for physician recommendation, SoCal

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    3

    Looking for physician recommendation, SoCal

    Hi everyone, I'm new to this group but wish I had found it a long time ago, what a great community and resource for those with scoliosis! I had Harrington rods put in 20 years ago at age 15, fused from approximately T1-L2 (don't know the exact numbers, this is my best guess/memory).

    I've always dealt with pain and injury at both ends of the fusion but have learned over the years how to treat those spots carefully to avoid significant problems. However 6-9 months ago I started experiencing persistent ongoing pain throughout my entire back, sometimes extending through to my shoulders, upper neck, and hips. It's almost like every muscle connected to my spine is suddenly ridiculously prone to injury. All it takes is quickly looking over my shoulder while driving or carelessly leaning over to pick up a shirt off the ground or (heaven forbid) picking up one of my kids, and I'm in pain for days while the "injury" slowly recovers.

    The speed with which I started experiencing all of this, and the wide range of muscles involved, makes me wonder if it's possible something has shifted with the metal in my back. I've had no back surgeries since the original one in 1994 so I would assume everything is pretty much locked in place by now, but just in case maybe a consultation with a specialist (and my first spine xray in 15 years) might not be a bad idea. Can anyone recommend a very good adult scoliosis Harrington rod specialist in southern California? San Diego preferred but I can travel to somewhere within driving distance.

    Would appreciate any advice, thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,797
    Quote Originally Posted by Megan B View Post
    Hi everyone, I'm new to this group but wish I had found it a long time ago, what a great community and resource for those with scoliosis! I had Harrington rods put in 20 years ago at age 15, fused from approximately T1-L2 (don't know the exact numbers, this is my best guess/memory).

    I've always dealt with pain and injury at both ends of the fusion but have learned over the years how to treat those spots carefully to avoid significant problems. However 6-9 months ago I started experiencing persistent ongoing pain throughout my entire back, sometimes extending through to my shoulders, upper neck, and hips. It's almost like every muscle connected to my spine is suddenly ridiculously prone to injury. All it takes is quickly looking over my shoulder while driving or carelessly leaning over to pick up a shirt off the ground or (heaven forbid) picking up one of my kids, and I'm in pain for days while the "injury" slowly recovers.

    The speed with which I started experiencing all of this, and the wide range of muscles involved, makes me wonder if it's possible something has shifted with the metal in my back. I've had no back surgeries since the original one in 1994 so I would assume everything is pretty much locked in place by now, but just in case maybe a consultation with a specialist (and my first spine xray in 15 years) might not be a bad idea. Can anyone recommend a very good adult scoliosis Harrington rod specialist in southern California? San Diego preferred but I can travel to somewhere within driving distance.

    Would appreciate any advice, thanks in advance!
    Try Sam Bederman at UC Irvine.
    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.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,551
    Hi Meagan

    Welcome to the forum!

    Just wondering where you were done in 1994? Was that in San Diego?

    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

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    3

    Thank you!

    Quote Originally Posted by LindaRacine View Post
    Try Sam Bederman at UC Irvine.
    Thank you Linda! Another member emailed me with the same recommendation so Dr. Bederman is definitely my go-to choice at this point. Appreciate the advice!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    3

    1994 Fusion

    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post
    Hi Meagan

    Welcome to the forum!

    Just wondering where you were done in 1994? Was that in San Diego?

    Ed
    Hi Ed,

    Yes my 1994 surgery was in San Diego, done by Dr. Browning at Kaiser. Although I don't have much to compare to the surgery seemed to be a good success, I had a nice normal recovery and limited problems until now.

    I was looking through the links below your name and the rib hump link caught my eye. I realize this isn't the right sub-forum for this question but do I understand correctly that you used to have a more significant hump, but it was somehow altered later? Just curious because I have a very significant rib hump. Thank you! =)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,690
    Surgery took care of my rib hump. I had been extremely self conscious of it, especially when bending over for golf. I love that it is gone!
    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
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,551
    Most of us have some sort of rib hump since that comes with the rotation that happens with scoliosis. With todays modern hardware, they do have the ability to reduce our humps through de-rotating or uncorking our spines. This is apparent not only through rib humps but through CT scans...My post CT scans still reveal a large amount of rotation, and I did feel the positive effects of the correction after my surgeries....My EMGís had to be going haywire!....almost like a lightning storm in Florida! If you lock up your doctors laptop, and he pulls the battery to reset it, you know its bad. (scoliosis forum humor)

    I had an upper right hump and a lower left hump in my lumbar with my ďSĒ curve. The lower hump is completely gone,(lower spine) and my thoracic hump reduced quite a bit. I donít really look back there much, so it doesnít matter much. Major pain forced me into surgery....and I was very lucky.

    If its been 15 years, it would be a good idea to visit and shoot some x-rays to take a peek. If you made it 20 years, you have done well....

    You know that revision surgery is serious surgery.....and of course your rib hump situation can only be answered by a scoliosis surgeon that does revisionís. Your current pain will need to be addressed and looked for along with all of the diagnostics, and all the co-pays.... Check your insurance 1st to address the financials....the insurance teams that surgeons have working with and for them are usually pretty good....I selected the PPO option beforehand so I could select my docs. I also changed my PCP to my scoli surgeon after the fact, that way he was calling the shots rather than a PA through an MD I never met. This avoids the doubling up of excessive tests, and multiple invoices and co-pays.

    You know about scoliosis surgery recovery.....if a revision is warranted, prepare for a long recovery period. I am not a believer in returning back to work to pay bills, and jeopardizing it by enduring WORK RELATED STRESS....If you can work now and save so you can take a year off, your probably better off. I took 18 months off before returning to the office. Co-workers just donít understand what we go through and some of them you cant teach, and they have no compassion. I have given up and have started growling now.....I need a bear suit for work. Should I go with the black bear suit or the grizzly suit?

    Ed
    Attached Images Attached Images
    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

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    1,161
    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post

    You know about scoliosis surgery recovery.....if a revision is warranted, prepare for a long recovery period. I am not a believer in returning back to work to pay bills, and jeopardizing it by enduring WORK RELATED STRESS....If you can work now and save so you can take a year off, your probably better off. I took 18 months off before returning to the office. Co-workers just donít understand what we go through and some of them you cant teach, and they have no compassion. I have given up and have started growling now.....I need a bear suit for work. Should I go with the black bear suit or the grizzly suit?

    Ed

    Dear Ed,

    You are quite right about trying to avoid being pressured back to work in order to pay the bills. This happened to me, although I could have tried to hold out longer strictly for the bills (and racked up more debt). Unfortunately for me my hospital was downsizing at the time, and I felt that I would be very vulnerable if I extended my leave outside of the FMLA job protection, not to mention insurance coverage. My cost for self-pay COBRA insurance for my family would have been over $2200/month, and nobody can afford to lose their insurance when they are only weeks out from scoliosis surgery. Planning ahead if possible for an extended period off work is ideal if it can be managed.

    My vote is for the grizzly suit, definitely...
    Gayle, age 50
    Oct 2010 fusion T8-sacrum w/ pelvic fixation
    Feb 2012 lumbar revision for broken rods @ L2-3-4
    Sept 2015 major lumbar A/P revision for broken rods @ L5-S1


    mom of Leah, 15 y/o, Diagnosed '08 with 26* T JIS (age 6)
    2010 VBS Dr Luhmann Shriners St Louis
    2017 curves stable/skeletely mature

    also mom of Torrey, 12 y/o son, 16* T, stable

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,551
    Wow Gail,

    $2200 is nuts. I didnít realize that a bunch of years has passed, and insurance rates have pretty much doubled under Obamacare. I guess ďweĒ all have to make damn well sure the insurance companies donít go broke again.....Its more of a reason to growl in a bear suit.

    Sorry Meagan, sometimes we do get a little sidetracked with the thread subject matters around here, but insurance issues play an important part of the whole package.

    Be sure to fill us in on what transpires.....Dr Bederman has been invaluable to Melissaís case.....

    I hope you can maintain with your pain....

    I lived in El Cajon 34 years ago, but didnít explore the scoliosis scene at that point....it was the dark ages of scoliosis, and I was hanging in there....

    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

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •