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Thread: Surgery Scheduled with Dr. Lenke in March - Not Sure the Timing is Right

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,779
    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post
    Karen, thanks for answering....itís the same with my skiing. But still amazing that we can still do quite well at our sports, including Donna on tennis. Tennis can be a brutal sport, thatís for sure.

    Janice, we have 3 different sports covered now on your thread! (smiley face) Karen on Golf, Donna on Tennis, and myself on Skiing.

    Being in good shape helps with surgery....

    I hope Linda is reading, I tried to send you a PM but your box is full.

    Ed
    Hi Ed....

    Thanks... Cleared out my PM.

    While we really don't have any research behind it, I'm sure most surgeons would agree that good fitness increases the chances of a good outcome. It was something I noticed quickly, when I first got involved with the scoliosis support group. It's not a guarantee, but it's probably the one thing we as patients can do to increase our odds. Unfortunately, it's sometimes impossible for people to get in shape, especially for people who have difficulty standing. And, once we've become deconditioned prior to surgery, it's often difficult to get it back, even after surgery. Perhaps this is one good argument for having surgery before the disease puts us out of commission. I went from being relatively active (playing softball, racketball, skiing, hiking, etc., to being almost complete inactive, in the 7 years between starting to have back problems and having surgery.

    --Linda
    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.

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by JaniceD View Post
    Thank you all for taking the time to reply and I appreciate all your thoughts.

    I think flexibility is so much on my mind because I am still pretty active and thereís not much I donít still do except jogging. But with whatever Iím doing eventually I have to give into pain and take a break. I feel very fortunate that I donít experience such pain where I canít get out and walk.

    Which leads to another one of my daily mental debates. With the lack of debilitating pain Ė Iím afraid the March surgery is too soon. Am I jumping the gun? I have bad enough curves, progression and discomfort to justify the surgery but not the daily debilitating pain.

    RMT Ė I wonder if you were in the same positon Iím in since you played tennis 5 days a week before surgery. Was it pain that drove your surgery decision or other factors? Iíd be curious to know.

    Ed - Enjoyed your Gunstock story! 94 and still skiing - good for her! We used to ski Gunstock when our boys were younger. Good place to learn. Some of our best family memories are from our many days on the slopes in NH/Vermont. Great times!

    Thanks again,
    Janice
    Janice,
    Although I lived in daily tolerable pain (maybe a motrin a few times a month) that was not the only factor that drove me to have the surgery. I was terrified of where I was heading (shrinking an inch a year) and hated the way my deformed body looked. Meeting Lenke and knowing that I was in the care of one of the best in the world helped me realize that now was the time to act. I had high confidence in my choice of a surgeon and realized that my 2 options were to continue to shrink, look terrible and end up in debilitating pain or take the chance that with a high probablility I will have a successful outcome by one of the leaders who pioneered this surgery. I know that you are probably scared that what if you do this and you end up worse than you are now and not able to do all you are doing now. Obviously you are a "do-er" now and enjoy being active. There are plenty of people who would take your current condition and use it as an excuse to give up and become addicted to meds and those people will do the same thing after surgery. You are not one of these people. You will be one of the ones who is walking a mile by 3 wks and doing whatever it takes to get off pain meds quickly and return back to your previous normal life.
    RMT
    RMT
    45 yrs old at time of surgery
    fused t4-s June 2014, Dr Lenke
    pre surgery curves 60 upper, 70 lower
    after surgery--pretty darn straight

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Bern, NC
    Posts
    1,445

    Red face

    Dear Janice,
    I rarely come on the forum anymore because I am too busy but will be posting on my 10 year surgery anniversary with Dr. Rand. For me, by the time I was able to get to Dr. Rand for help, it was already too late. None of my Doctors told me I had scoliosis nor did they refer me to a scoliosis specialist. I found Dr. Rand through a friend who worked for DuPuy. Anyway, I had lost my flexibility so that when Dr. Rand operated on me, he was not able to straighten my spine. He did give me back some lumbar curve, but that was about it. I am fused from L2 to the sacrum with pelvic fixation. Before surgery I could barely walk to my mailbox and couldn't stand more that five minutes. Now, I can walk about one mile and can stand about two hours. I have bad knees and ankle joints which limit walking, but I can line dance for about 1 1/2 hours. I am happy about my surgery even though I have some pain every day but it is not debilitating. Just wanted you to know that Dr. Rand is a fine surgeon and flexibility is very important.
    Sally
    Diagnosed with severe lumbar scoliosis at age 65.
    Posterior Fusion L2-S1 on 12/4/2007. age 67
    Anterior Fusion L3-L4,L4-L5,L5-S1 on 12/19/2007
    Additional bone removed to decompress right side of L3-L4 & L4-L5 on 4/19/2010
    New England Baptist Hospital, Boston, MA
    Dr. Frank F. Rands735.photobucket.com/albums/ww360/butterflyfive/

    "In God We Trust" Happy moments, praise God. Difficult moments, seek God. Quiet moments, worship God. Painful moments, trust God. Every moment, thank God.

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    16
    Hi Sally,
    Thanks for your response and thoughts. Congrats on your 10 yr anniversary! My husband and I met with Dr Rand 2x fall of 2015. We were both impressed with him and NE Baptist Hospital. He took as much time as needed to discuss my concerns. I still hear his cautionary words about taking the time to weigh and understand my options because I am still doing well enough. I think about that a lot still.
    Glad you are doing well!
    Janice

  5. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    16
    Quote Originally Posted by rmt View Post
    I know that you are probably scared that what if you do this and you end up worse than you are now and not able to do all you are doing now.
    Hi RMT,
    Thanks for your reply and encouraging words. I am absolutely petrified of doing this and ending up worse than I am. My life is really ok as is now but I know my curves will continue to worsen and my quality of life will decline. I like to think I am a 'do-er' and will be walking a mile at 3 weeks! But with the hills in our neighborhood most of the mile will take place going up and down our driveway!
    Janice

  6. #21
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    35

    Wishing you well for your upcoming surgery!

    Hi Janice, Iím thinking of you and wishing you the best for your upcoming surgery. It must be so difficult as the date approaches. I am very interested in how everything goes as I am scheduled for surgery with Dr. Lenke 8/14 (70 degrees, T4-Sacrum, 5 Osteomities, 2 TLIFs) I have the same question as you: Dr. Lenke is great, but how is the hospital? I believe the surgeon choice is much more important and if the surgeon is good then of course he will be in a good hospital with good people, so not to worry! Please post when you can about how all goes for you. Hope you are OK and Iím sure things will turn out beautifully! Wishing you all the best and a speedy recovery!
    -Ripley

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,686
    Ripley and Janice,
    Best of luck with your upcoming surgeries. I am so thankful for Dr. Lenke's skills and my successful surgery. You are in good hands!
    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. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    16

    My Surgery was Rescheduled to 4/20

    Hey Ripley and Karen!
    Just noticed your comments from end of Feb. My surgery was postponed till 4/20Öso that gave me a little more breathing space. But now I am 6 weeks out again and was just rereading all the positive encouraging posts in this thread because I am getting a huge case of the jitters! When we saw Dr Lenke and staff for my pre-op appts we had such an all-around positive visit we left knowing I am in the best hands. Iím trying really hard to focus on that and keep my thinking on the positive side (but sometimes I digress ).

    Thank you for your thoughts and I will let you know how it goes!

    Janice

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,686
    I always felt better after meeting with Dr. Lenke, however, I doubt that regardless of one's confidence in their surgeon, that anyone could not have anxiety before this surgery. My presurgery time was the worst! Although I was extremely nervous, I tried really hard to focus on the positives. I was excited about the fact that Dr. Lenke would give me a straight back!
    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/

  10. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    16

    Surgery with Dr Lenke on April 20

    Hi - My surgery took place on Thurs 4/20, 8 hrs, T2-sacrum. Spent an extra day in ICU due to low BP which took some work to stabilize and in spite of that they still had me walk and sit up the morning after the surgery. Amazing! Once out of ICU things progressed quickly, and I was released on Tues. 4/25. We stayed in the area at the Hyatt Place for another week, made the 4.5 hr ride home to NH over 2 days and arrived home on Weds. 5/3. It was so good to be home! Been progressing well with home PT 2 days a week and a wonderful husband who has been 100% caring and supportive! Walking as much as possible inside and outside including slight inclines.

    I can not say enough good things about Dr Lenke, his staff and the Spine Hospital. Pain management was right on. The nurses were incredibly caring, attentive and fun. The PT and OT staff were also top-notch. I know there are a few folks out there with upcoming surgeries with Dr Lenke. Please feel free to reach out and Iíd be happy to answer any questions I can. Rest assured you are in the very best hands!

    The Hyatt Place hotel is very accommodating to hospital patients and went out of their way to make us as comfortable as possible. They even provided tennis balls to spiff up my walker! The long hallways are great for walking all hours of they day or night. Being right at a mall made it easy to get outside to do some walking, too, as the whole area is flat. We asked for a microwave, wheelchair and with Stop and Shop next door food was not an issue.

    Did have some residual pain/weakness in my left leg. Initially, concerning to me as I had no leg pain prior to the surgery. Doctors and PT were not concerned and I was told it would come around. And it has!

    Janice

  11. #26
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waterloo, IL
    Posts
    1,686
    Janice,
    You sound so good for so soon after your surgery. I am glad everything went so well. I think the world of Dr. Lenke. Best of luck for a speedy recovery.
    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/

  12. #27
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    16
    Thank you, Karen! So far, so good! There's been some not so good days... like today...but even today I progressed some more. Occasionally, I feel like the family dog. I eat, sleep, walk and look forward to a ride in the car! Ha, ha! Take care, Janice

  13. #28
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,516
    Janice

    You sound pretty good for 28 days out. The bad days will come and go, usually as we push the limits.....

    Very good timing on having your surgery when you did. You wont have to worry about freezing on your meds....

    I became extremely constipated between the 4-6 week time period. It seemed like I built up an immunity to Colace, and really got jammed up. (This was incredibly painful...., the needle was pinned, and held for hours)

    Having that bottle or two of Magnesium Citrate on standby is a good idea......(This stuff will break a dam)

    http://www.cvs.com/shop/health-medic...prodid-1012005


    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

  14. #29
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    16
    Hi Ed,
    So true about the cold. I'm glad the timing worked out as it did. At least, I am not also housebound by snow and ice. Thanks for the 4-6 week warning. I'll keep that in mind and get some magnesium citrate on standby!
    Take care,
    Janice.

  15. #30
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    35

    Hope you are feeling better!! .... and some questions....

    Hi Janice,

    I havenít been able to get on the forum for months because of the phishing warning. I have surgery with Dr. Lenke on 8/14 (T4-Sacrum) and have a lot of questions. Iíd like to know what you brought to the hospital and if your husband was able to stay with you there - probably after the ICU if at all Iím guessingÖ Iíd love to hear about your progress, how bad was the pain, and how long it took for it to be at a tolerable level. Also, you said it took 2 days to make the 4 hour drive home. Is that because you were in pain and had to go slowly? I hope you are feeling even better now! Any advice and info is greatly appreciated! Thanks so much!!

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