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Thread: Scared but scheduled for T4-pelvis Fusion Oct 2015

  1. #91
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Yacolt, WA
    Posts
    1,598
    Mom x 4: it is evening here on the West Coast, so mom, if you are still awake, like golfnut said: you will be absolutely fine. Sure, you will hurt a whole bunch and you will be constipated and the surgery will not go exactly smoothly. But....with time you will find that you feel so much better than you did preoperatively and that surgery wasn't really that scary after all.

    But yes, surgery is scary before you actually experience it. I wish that I could come over to your home or hotel and work on progressive relaxation....or we could just share a bottle of good wine together.

    I am sending you positive thoughts, healing prayers, a hug.

    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

  2. #92
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    2,262
    Wishing all good things for you
    Melissa

    Fused from C2 - sacrum 7/2011

    December 8, 2014 - Another Broken Rod Surgery

  3. #93
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    illinois
    Posts
    881
    Sending calm healing thoughts
    T10-pelvis fusion 12/08
    Fractured t-9 six days out of surgery
    C5,6,7 fusion 9/10
    PJK at t-9
    T2--T10 fusion 2/11
    Removal of left side t6-t10. 8/14
    C 4-5 fusion 11/14
    Right scapulectomy 6/15
    Right pectoralis major muscle transfer to scapula
    To replace the action of Serratus Anterior muscle 3/16

  4. #94
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Yacolt, WA
    Posts
    1,598
    Hang in there. It will get better . a gentle hug
    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

  5. #95
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Central PA
    Posts
    50

    On the other side...

    Hi all. This is Nancy's sister posting. She thanks you all for your well wishes. She was discharged from the hospital yesterday and is wondering about pain control. She is on 5 mg oxycodone, valium, baclofen, gabopentin, and Tylenol. We know that every surgeon and patient is different, but does anyone else have a similar experience? She obviously is still struggling with pain.

  6. #96
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    4,160
    HI Nancy’s sister!

    Being released is good news....very good news.

    The first few weeks will be hard with every minute spent trying to get comfortable. She should be able to take a hot shower by now, these are very helpful. Turn up the hot water heater in the garage so you don’t run out of hot water. She will also like to keep the house warm, we freeze quite a bit on our meds, even at 84 degrees.

    I started on Oxycodone and felt that it wasn’t cutting the mustard. I was switched to Percoset, which is oxy with Tylenol and that helped some.......

    The most important thing right now is to keep her moving. Walking often, doing short walks throughout the day help keep blood flowing which transfers nutrients into healing zones. Eating is extremely important since we get run down and our bodies are in a sort of high gear healing mode. Its hard to eat on meds that’s why I mention this. The ensure drinks are not too bad....and good old water keeps the plumbing from backing up.

    Keep notes on all medication intake, food, walks, BM’s. This is important.

    Congratulations and thanks for posting. Ask any questions you wish.

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 61, the new 61...
    Pre surgery curves 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

  7. #97
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Yacolt, WA
    Posts
    1,598
    Please say hi from Susan!
    Ed's advice was wise. My suggestions: pain meds: give around the clock at max allowed, if inadequate call the doctor
    Constipation prevention: take Colace three times a day, take Miralax with juice daily, insert suppository if no BM in 2 days, use oral Dulcolax if needed further.
    Lots of sleep, short walks 2 times a day, when sleeping on side place pillow between legs, promise: it will get better!
    Give a gentle hug.
    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

  8. #98
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Long Island, New York
    Posts
    87

    Pain control

    Quote Originally Posted by Mom of 4 View Post
    Hi all. This is Nancy's sister posting. She thanks you all for your well wishes. She was discharged from the hospital yesterday and is wondering about pain control. She is on 5 mg oxycodone, valium, baclofen, gabopentin, and Tylenol. We know that every surgeon and patient is different, but does anyone else have a similar experience? She obviously is still struggling with pain.
    I was on all that PLUS OxyContin every 6 hours. She needs a long lasting pain control. She has my cell number please call or text me. I am near the city had my surgery almost a year ago, I spoke to Nancy last weekend. Ice and heat alternating helped me too.
    Cathy
    2 sons, one Syracuse University graduate (working for the Mets now), one college sophomore, one great husband and two fabulous cats
    54 years old March 5
    AIS 45 degrees Thoracic at 14, Milwaukee brace for one year in 1977 then in 2012 I found Dr. Baron Lonner ❤️
    Surgery April 8 2015
    Presurgical curves T77 L66
    Post surgical T27 L22
    Fused T3-S1 pelvic fixation, osteotomies and all the other stuff but you know what? It's done...

  9. #99
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    225

    That's not much for pain!

    My husband who doesn't even have scoliosis had just an L3-S1 fusion and was discharged with way more than that. Granted, he was narcotic tolerant already, having been on OxyContin or something similar for many years, but still, a much smaller surgery. At eight weeks postop he is still taking what he was discharged with: 20mg Oxycontin 3 X daily, Percocet 20mg 4x daily, plus Robaxin and Valium.

    By the way, shouldn't pain have decreased a lot by 8 weeks?
    Stephanie, age 56
    Diagnosed age 8
    Milwaukee brace 9 years, no further treatment, symptom free and clueless until my 40s that curves could progress.
    Thoracolumbar curve 39 degrees at age 17
    Now somewhere around 58 degrees thoracic, 70 degrees thoracolumbar
    Surgeon Dr. Michael S. O'Brien, Baylor's Southwest Scoliosis Center, Dallas TX
    Bilateral laminectomies at L3 to L4, L4 to L5 and L5 to S1 on April 4, 2012
    Foramenotomies L3 through S1 in August 2014

  10. #100
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Central PA
    Posts
    50

    Smile 2 weeks plus 2 days!!!

    Hi everyone!! Thank you all so much for the prayers, well-wishes and advice. It means the world to me!!!

    I can't believe I'm on the other side! I have been doing quite well. I hate sitting, but laying down and walking are no problem at all!!! I used the walker in the hospital, but haven't since. I was advised to use it at night because I have a tendency to get dizzy...there's a hole in my bathroom door to prove it The first night home, the walker was right next to the bed, but I didn't see it. I headed to the bathroom on my own...BIG MISTAKE. As I was washing my hands, my knees began to knock against the cabinet. Thankfully, my husband heard me yelling for help. I ended up passing out. Fortunately, he grabbed me under my arm pits before I fell to the floor. I have no recollection of how I got from the bathroom to the bed. All I remember was waking up on my knees at the edge of my bed side. I was really, really scared. My husband said I didn't fall, so I don't think I did any damage, thank GOD!!!

    My husband bought a Garmin (Fit bit type thing) so that I can track my activity. I've been trying to walk a lot inside. Yesterday was the first day I actually got outside to walk. It was also the first day using my new Garmin. I took three reasonably sized walks. According to my Garmin it says I walked 2.74 miles for the day. If that's accurate, I'm pretty excited! I think the gorgeous Spring weather helped a lot, too!

    Pain management was a challenge in the hospital. They tried, but never got it right Once out of the hospital, my sister, who was staying with me (hubby was with the 2 younger kids) set alarms so that I could receive all my meds on time. Boy, did that make a world of difference!!!

    Today I have an appointment with my PCP. He's the one who will now manage my meds. I'm a little nervous about it. He's a wonderful doctor, but I don't think he has much experience with a surgery of this type. The pain management Doctor I called had a really long wait time to get an appointment so that's why I went with my PCP. Fingers crossed all goes well this morning!

  11. #101
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    illinois
    Posts
    881
    You sound like you are doing really well. Walking is key. It also helps to be outside. Keep up the good work. Sitting is hard. After years it is still hard for me to sit it's all going to get easier from here.
    T10-pelvis fusion 12/08
    Fractured t-9 six days out of surgery
    C5,6,7 fusion 9/10
    PJK at t-9
    T2--T10 fusion 2/11
    Removal of left side t6-t10. 8/14
    C 4-5 fusion 11/14
    Right scapulectomy 6/15
    Right pectoralis major muscle transfer to scapula
    To replace the action of Serratus Anterior muscle 3/16

  12. #102
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Yacolt, WA
    Posts
    1,598
    Glad that you are doing well. Keep up the walking, I also suggest outside is best. Garmin is a great idea!
    Pain meds are very individual, but make changes slowly. I used a lot of ice bags for pain relief. And....keep ahead of the constipation.
    In recovery from surgery, it is difficult to remember the challenges and limitations that we had Preop. Those bad memories fade, but you can hopefully remember them and see that you are going forward....ever so slowly but forward.
    Keep a journal of all that you do, meds you take, walking, naps, etc.
    Sending healing thoughts your way.
    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

  13. #103
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    4,160
    Congratulation’s Nancy! You made it!

    Now you will really understand why some of us will say “Hang in there”. Remember that things always get better with time....

    I also close many posts with “Deep breaths” which is a good idea. The incentive spirometer has great value. Even if you simply stare at it as a reminder, go outside and breathe in deep and hard. As hard as you can, then exhale.....for the lungs and for the mind. It’s a great stress reducer.

    My surgeon insisted on walking outdoors, and no treadmills. On meds, I guess its easy to make a mistake and get thrown down and there are all sorts of indoor air pollutants....

    Walking should be done with mild goal setting in mind.....there is no race or distance requirement. It comes slow, and sometimes it hurts, so you turn around and go back home. I would walk to the next house, and turn around. A month later, it was the same thing for me with no distance improvement and if I pushed harder, it would set me back in pain. Eventually, you will get there.

    It took me a year to walk a mile....so if you get stuck, you have to learn to smile. If someone asks what wrong, just say “I’m stuck here, there is nothing you can do” and smile. I had to do this a few times since the look of pain transfers across easily and it’s hard to hide sometimes.....Use walking sticks or ski poles, they help quite a bit if the local dogs come around wanting to jump up on you.

    Hang in there
    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 61, the new 61...
    Pre surgery curves 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

  14. #104
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    2,262
    Glad that you are on the other side
    Take care of yourself now and Walk but don't over do it
    Melissa
    Last edited by mabeckoff; 03-27-2016 at 09:57 PM.
    Melissa

    Fused from C2 - sacrum 7/2011

    December 8, 2014 - Another Broken Rod Surgery

  15. #105
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Long Island, New York
    Posts
    87

    Yay!

    I'm so glad to hear all this Nancy....minus the fall, I fell too once I think I told you. Scary!

    Hooray on the walking too, that'll get you feeling better so fast, I definitely did NOT walk that much for the first month, but once I did I noticed a swift improvement.

    Congratulations on getting it DONE!

    Keep us posted.

    💕
    Cathy
    2 sons, one Syracuse University graduate (working for the Mets now), one college sophomore, one great husband and two fabulous cats
    54 years old March 5
    AIS 45 degrees Thoracic at 14, Milwaukee brace for one year in 1977 then in 2012 I found Dr. Baron Lonner ❤️
    Surgery April 8 2015
    Presurgical curves T77 L66
    Post surgical T27 L22
    Fused T3-S1 pelvic fixation, osteotomies and all the other stuff but you know what? It's done...

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