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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    9

    Had Revision Surgery and am checking in

    Sorry that it has been awhile since I have posted. So this past fall, I had my revision surgery for flatback syndrome. The surgery was an A/P approach and I am now fused to pelvis. At this point, I am a little over 7 weeks post-op and doing quite well. That being said, I remain cautiously optimistic.

    This was a very difficult decision for me to make. I had received multiple opinions from surgeons and even traveled out of town to do so. Although all of these surgeons agreed on the problem, their surgical approaches and solutions varied. I decided to use a surgeon in my area who had a great reputation and was covered by my insurance. He did not extend on my old Harrington Rod or remove it.

    The main thing that made my decision easier is that I was able to speak with two of my surgeon's patients who had the revision surgery and had a similar history to me. These patients were both extremely positive about their post-op progress. I encourage anyone considering this surgery to get multiple opinions and see if you can speak to other patients. Back in the 80's when I had my first fusion, the spine center that I went to had a support group made up of former patients and this was very helpful.

    I am now walking and climbing stairs. I still have the numbness in my right foot that I had before the surgery, but my understanding is that now there is a chance that this can get better. I have been told by my surgeon that it can take up to one year to get sensation back and there is no guarantee, but it should not get any worse. When I walk outdoors, I use a walking stick, as it helps with balance issues. Yesterday, I swam for the first time post-op and had no issues or pain as a result. I have sort of a generalized weakness which I am not surprised by considering my age and the amount of surgery that I had. I continue to work on getting my strength back.

    I have very much appreciated this forum throughout the whole process. It was helpful to hear other people's stories and to know that I was not alone in this process. In that spirit, I will keep you all posted on my progress.

    1985 - Spinal fusion, T4-L4 with Harrington Rod

    2017 - L4-5, L5-S1 Anterior lumbar interbody fusion with femoral ring allograft
    T12 to ilium posterior segmental instrumentation
    L4-5, L5-S1 posterior fusion

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Midlands, UK
    Posts
    22
    Sounds like you are doing really well after only 7 weeks
    Juvenile Idiopathic Scoliosis diagnosed aged 6/7
    Milwaukee brace 1980 - 1984, Fused T2 - L3 with Harrington Rod 1984, 10 rib costoplasty 1999, artificial disc at L3/L4 2003, extended fusion to L5 2006.
    2015 - Sagittal plane imbalance correction by insertion of 30 degree hyperlordotic cage at L5/S1 level (anterior approach) with fixation to pelvis (posterior approach) now fused T2 to sacrum.
    2017 - October - SI joint fusion - left side
    2017 - December - Revision of failed left SI joint fusion

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Eurkea California
    Posts
    31
    Iím glad your surgery went well
    Kara
    Soon to be 26
    Braced at 13 years old
    Posterior Spinal Fusion March 10th 2010
    Age at the of surgery 18 years old
    Preop Curves 50T and 39L
    Postop Curves 20T and 17L

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    9

    Thanks!

    Thanks Kara!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    9

    Thanks and...

    Quote Originally Posted by Spinals View Post
    Sounds like you are doing really well after only 7 weeks
    Thanks. I think so. I am still on the prescription pain meds but am weaning off. The first part of my recovery seemed to go really fast, but this part, getting a normal level of energy back seems to be going slower. Also, acknowledge the many advances in surgical techniques and medications since my first spine fusion in the 80's. Still it was a lot of surgery. Feel lucky and glad to be on the other side of it!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,640
    You Harrington guys are such troopers.....Congratulations!

    Do try to take things easy.....one day at a time. Healing comes in time....

    Hot water soaks help with the pain....it was crucial for my weaning. I "replaced" meds with nutrients, through whey protein powder smoothies. Nutrient deficiency in recovery happens to us after serious surgery, its never something to neglect which can happen when taking opoid's.....The smoothies became my new "sippin whiskey", small amounts through out the day....

    Diet is so important.

    In a blender....
    1/4 cup Whey protein powder
    1 Yogurt (Organic)
    1 Banana
    10 Strawberries
    20 Blueberries
    10 Raspberries
    10 Almonds

    Store blender in fridge, re-blend when needed.

    For convenience, go frozen on the strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries, its easier and they last longer.

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 59, 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

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    9

    Thanks for healing tips...

    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post
    You Harrington guys are such troopers.....Congratulations!

    Do try to take things easy.....one day at a time. Healing comes in time....

    Hot water soaks help with the pain....it was crucial for my weaning. I "replaced" meds with nutrients, through whey protein powder smoothies. Nutrient deficiency in recovery happens to us after serious surgery, its never something to neglect which can happen when taking opoid's.....The smoothies became my new "sippin whiskey", small amounts through out the day....

    Diet is so important.

    In a blender....
    1/4 cup Whey protein powder
    1 Yogurt (Organic)
    1 Banana
    10 Strawberries
    20 Blueberries
    10 Raspberries
    10 Almonds

    Store blender in fridge, re-blend when needed.

    For convenience, go frozen on the strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries, its easier and they last longer.

    Ed
    Thanks Ed. Appreciate the smoothie recipe. Sounds really healthy and good. I agree about the importance of diet. I find myself craving more protein type foods including meat since the surgery. Also, thanks for the other good tips about recovery. I may try the hot water soaks.

    A big priority for me is working on balance since I still have some foot numbness. I have a healthy fear of falling which comes from having a bad fall years ago.

    I agree that people with Harrington rods are troopers. That being said, I think a lot of people on this forum including yourself, who manage this condition, whether they have had surgery or not, are also troopers.
    Last edited by OhioSwimmer; 12-11-2017 at 02:04 PM.

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