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Thread: Skiing/Snowboarding

  1. #1
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    Skiing/Snowboarding

    Okay, based on the title of the thread I'm sure you all know what I'm going to ask lol.

    When do you think I'd be cleared to go skiing or snowboarding? I know that's probably not something I should even be considering to do because I'm not even a full year post-op, but today every student who made the honor roll at my school got a one-day free pass to a ski-resort, which I thought was totally awesome until I realized that there's probably no way at all I can go. I'm assuming that eventually I'd be able to go,though, right?

    I know when you learn how to snowboard you fall all the time, so can that actually damage the fusion even years after it's solid? I guess there's always the chance something could happen with anything, though. Anyway.

    Has anyone here gone skiing/snowboarding after surgery? Would appreciate any feedback. Thanks! =]
    Last edited by danceISlife; 12-16-2008 at 10:38 PM.
    Nicole//18 years old, college sophomore//50 degree thoracolumbar curve//Posterior Spinal Fusion in 2008, Fused T5 to L3

  2. #2
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    Nicole, is there some reason why you can't ask your surgeon this question?

    The surgeon is the only person you should be asking this of.

    Our surgeon's assistant handles his email. She asks him my questions and usually get back to me the same day or next day.

    You could also call the surgeon.
    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."

  3. #3
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    Well, to be completely honest, my surgeon actually decided to leave the practice (without telling anyone, I don't know what happened) so I am going to see a new doctor within that practice in January. I will definitely ask him then, I just wanted to kind of see what other people's experiences were to kind of get a general idea of what he may say until then since I would feel a little uncomfortable calling or emailing him beforehand since I haven't met him yet. But, thanks for the quick response!
    Nicole//18 years old, college sophomore//50 degree thoracolumbar curve//Posterior Spinal Fusion in 2008, Fused T5 to L3

  4. #4
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    Nicole, I think you have options.

    You can call the office and find out who is taking over your case. Then email/call that person.

    You can ask the office if you should be chasing down your surgeon and asking him this question.

    Can you ask your parents to help you with this? I wouldn't expect my daughter to be handling this by herself even if she was your age.

    At your last visit, didn't your surgeon talk about what restrictions you were to follow?

    BTW, my daughter was fused eight days after you were and I can tell you exactly what our surgeon would say. But I'm not going to share that because it is potentially irrelevant to your situation.

    Good luck.
    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."

  5. #5
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    Okay, as you suggested, I think I am just going to send an email even though I haven't officially met my new doctor yet. I do wish I could get in contact with the doctor who actually performed my surgery, but at the moment I have no way of doing so because supposedly when he left the practice he didn't give any notice ahead of time and left on...odd terms. But like I said, I guess I will just send an email. I thought it would be a bit awkward, but I can see your point in the sense that no one can answer the question all too well because each person is different and has a different recovery/situation.

    Yes, my surgeon did discuss restrictions with me, but I didn't particularly ask about this because, well, I've never done it before and it didn't come to mind. Not to mention the fact that it was summer, and I was more concerned with being able to do summer-ish things like beach volleyball (which was a no lol).

    And I did talk to my parents. They don't really have a clue, but based on common sense think that I probably won't be cleared to snowboard anytime soon (which I also think will probably happen). I was just basically wondering when a majority of people are cleared to do this specific activity, considering I do think it can be risky with falls and everything. I'd like to think that at least at some point I'd be able to snowboard haha.

    But, I will find out soon and ask him. Anyway, thank you! =]
    Nicole//18 years old, college sophomore//50 degree thoracolumbar curve//Posterior Spinal Fusion in 2008, Fused T5 to L3

  6. #6
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    Nicole,

    As Sharon suggested, I would ask your surgeon next month, but I understand you wanting to have some idea right now as to whether or not you'll be able to use the pass.

    My daughter was in a similar situation after her surgery--everyone who was on the honor roll at least 3 times got a free day at our local amusement park. Jamie's doctor had already told her no amusement parks until she was one year post-op. She ended up not being able to use the pass because by the time she was one year post-op, the park was closed!

    You might be surprised. My daughter was very restricted for a full year, but I've read where others were released from all restrictions after six months or so. Don't give away the pass yet. You might be able to use it after your one year mark.

    Good luck.

    Mary Lou
    Mom to Jamie age 21-diagnosed at age 12-spinal fusion 12/7/2004-fused from T3-L2; and Tracy age 19, mild Scoliosis-diagnosed at age 18.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by danceISlife View Post
    Yes, my surgeon did discuss restrictions with me, but I didn't particularly ask about this because, well, I've never done it before and it didn't come to mind. Not to mention the fact that it was summer, and I was more concerned with being able to do summer-ish things like beach volleyball (which was a no lol).
    I guess all surgeons are different. At the six-week appointment, we were told which restrictions were going to be lifted and when. There was no guesswork or having to ask about individual activities though I did ask specifically about riding. But even that got lumped into the "everything except bungee jumping." Everything means everything.

    But different cases might require different restriction patterns I guess. I don't know.

    Quote Originally Posted by danceISlife View Post
    And I did talk to my parents.
    Ah, sorry I was unclear. I meant ask your parents to call the office and get the procedure they are following for patients of the surgeon who left. I would not have my daughters calling the office and figuring this out. I did not mean ask your parents' opinion on the restrictions (unless they are orthopedic surgeons who work on spines).

    Good luck. I would not rule out being able to go but you'll have to ask.
    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."

  8. #8
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    novato, ca
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    So, have you used the pass yet?
    Of course you know all us mom's would say no. It's scary to think all that you go through, and then potentially you can wind up in the same spot because you couldn't wait.
    I remember the first time I went on a roller coaster after my surgery, I was happy my mom wasn't there, it was sooo fun. Now years later, I get motion sickness on them, go figure.
    Anyway, I know it's hard to wait a year and watch your friends have all the fun. But it is only one season to sit out. Next year, take it slowly, some have found their balance to be slightly different after a fusion. And in five years you'll barely remember that winter you didn't get to go.
    -Emily

  9. #9
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    Feb 2006
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    Skiing at all?????

    I'd like to ask the question a different way.

    Is there anyone out there (adolescent or adult) with rods who goes downhill skiing or snowboarding? You don't have to be specific and tell us when or if you were cleared by your surgeon or how long post op you actually resumed skiing/snowboarding.

    I'd just like to know if anyone does it. Thanks!
    Martha
    Mother of Laura, Age 19
    Diagnosed with S curve at Age 13 (49*T/32*L)
    Wore brace for one year (Wilmington Jacket)
    Posterior spinal fusion on April 17, '08 with Dr. Flynn at CHOP (Age 16)
    Fused T2-L2
    Pre-op curves: 41*UT/66*T/34*L
    Post-op curves: 14*UT/19*T/19*L
    Note: At 1 yr. post-op appt, UNFUSED lumbar curve improved to 14*!!
    OK to email me at: malka22@comcast.net

  10. #10
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    May 2008
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    reno,nevada
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    The skiing question, a tough one for me.

    Being a 47 year skier, I had to respond to this. I have been cleared to go skiing by my surgeon, however he stated that I could crack my fusions, and break hardware. No more air, no extreme g forces, and no velocity. He stated I could withstand a low slow speed fall. He also knows about my competitive extreme skiing history, and our high cliffs out here.

    Skiers fall less than boarders. Sorry guys but it is the truth. Boarding is a great sport and requires good balance however, the fact that both feet are attached(with non releasing bindings) and not having poles that skiers use for balance, means more falling.

    I will go skiing here soon, and it will be a low speed, no falls allowed kind of thing. You also have to worry about someone hitting you. It will be ok as long as it is on a low impact level. A violent crash is out of the question and I've had a few of those before surgery. LOL

    Nicole,
    I was cleared for skiing due to having BMP done to me. It reduces fusion time and my surgeon told me I was fused at 6 months.

    In your case, you might want to scrap this season and wait till next season after you talk to your surgeon. Slamming down on the ice or having someone plow into you right now is not a good idea.

    Its so hard to say what's ok and what's not ok as far as activities are concerned. Its just so much wiser to have a reserved approach and think about how serious your surgery was.

    I'm assuming your from NJ being operated on down in New Brunswick. I grew up in Wayne,NJ and skied at Great Gorge which is now called Mountain Creek from 1965 to 1979. I moved to Lake Tahoe for skiing in 1980 and I'm still here.

    Suzy has gone skiing, maybe she will call me up and say lets go. It would have to be a short day since my upper muscles are a little funky. My "bear traps' are calming down but they are still there, otherwise I'm doing great.

    Regards
    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

  11. #11
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    Nov 2005
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    NS. CANADA
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    Snowboarding

    I had my surgery when I was 13. In march. I was snowboarding by that Christmas break.

    BUT I had seen my doctor and he had cleared me. (even though I had been told in march that I would probably have to wait 2 years after surgery)

    So there is hope, but you really need to have an xray done and you doctors ok.

    And I did fall, a lot, as balancing on the board felt different, but I didn't have any damage from that other than a few bruises.

    I went skiing the next year, and had no problems either.

    Tessa
    Last edited by tessa; 12-28-2008 at 01:52 AM.

  12. #12
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    Mar 2005
    Location
    novato, ca
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    Ok, I know this isn't skiing/snow boarding, but we went sledding on the weekend using a saucer and now my neck has been hurting. I think I bent it back too much when the saucer would turn and I'd go down backwards, I'd lay back and look up. When we go again I think I'll have to remember not to do that.
    By the way, my daughter, who has growth rods/staples, thought it would be fun to bring the inner tube. I told her to wait a year, I didn't think her doctor would like to see all our hard work to get her straight to go in one bounce. So, she laughed as her brother faceplanted on the steep runs and wnd we went down the smaller ones.
    Emily

  13. #13
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    Feb 2008
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    It is different for everyone and all cases are different, but i asked at my previous appointment, and it was a let down, but i wasnt surprised lol. I have to wait for my year like many others, that may be what will happen to you. I know how hard it can be not being able to do things because of the surgery because i missed my last junior high year of playing volleyball, and wasnt to happy about it lol. But you just have to remind yourself that what your giving up has its good points to. I mean you are straightened out now and doing well, so thats always something to remember when your upset, because your beautiful and straight now! yay!

    Time flys when your having fun, or recovering.
    I'm 19 years old, had surgery 5 years ago
    3 curves Middle curve - 65 fused to 13 Bottom curve 35- fixed on it's own to 16!
    Fused from C7 to L1

  14. #14
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    Nov 2007
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    Houston, TX
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    Quote Originally Posted by malka22 View Post
    I'd like to ask the question a different way.

    Is there anyone out there (adolescent or adult) with rods who goes downhill skiing or snowboarding? You don't have to be specific and tell us when or if you were cleared by your surgeon or how long post op you actually resumed skiing/snowboarding.

    I'd just like to know if anyone does it. Thanks!
    Malka ...

    I'll be wakeboarding soon (pretty close, and actually more impact) at < 1 year post op. Will report back ;-).

    Oh ... and I'm WAY cleared by my surgeon. Have been off restriction from almost everything from 4 months.

    Regards,
    Pam
    Fusion is NOT the end of the world.
    AIDS Walk Houston 2008 5K @ 33 days post op!


    41, dx'd JIS & Boston braced @ 10
    Pre-op 53, Post-op < 20
    Fused 2/5/08, T4-L1 ... Darrell S. Hanson, Houston


    VIEW MY X-RAYS
    EMAIL ME

  15. #15
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    Sep 2007
    Location
    Boston, MA
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    I just got back from my first post-surgery ski trip. I felt great - my back didn't bother me at all. Of course, I was cleared by my doctor first!

    Good luck!
    2000 34*L/39*T
    2007 44*L/53*T

    12.3.07 Posterior Spinal Fusion T4-T12
    (initially planned T4-L1)
    12.18.07 11*L/10*T

    23 years old

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