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Thread: confused

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    108

    confused

    Tahlia is now almost 5 weeks post op and improving every day. However, just this morning she said to me she didn't want to give up her shower chair because she doesn't know how to clean her lower legs and feet if she's standing. How did others (or your kids) progress through this? I am sometimes unsure how or what to advise my daughter. I am always telling her not to bend over or twist, etc., etc. But is she ever going to be allowed to bend over to pick things up, wash her feet, tie her shoelaces, etc. I'm sorry if this sounds like a silly question, but I really don't know what to expect or what to say to her.

    When we left hospital, we didn't really get any advice on how things would progress or what restrictions Tahlia should be following. Can anyone enlighten us?

    Thanks heaps,

    Hugs,
    Lisa

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    254
    Lisa,

    It takes time..I called my husband in to wash my legs and back for months until I was comfortable enough to bend in the shower. Our shower is really too small for the chair so I only used that for about a month just because I was so dizZy. My husband would stand right outside the shower until all the dizziness went away. I remember thinking am I ever going to be able to do things on my own again? and yes today I am amazed at all I can do.
    Patty 51 years old
    Surgery May 23, 2007(43 Birthday)
    Posterior T3- L4
    Pre surgery curves
    T-53degrees
    L-38degrees
    and a severe side shift to the right.
    Post surgery curves
    Less than 10 degrees
    Surgery April, 2006
    C4 - C6

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    338
    Lisa--

    I wish Sidney cared whether his feet were clean or not! The issue we have closest to yours is tying his shoes. He sits on a bench, slips his feet into his sneakers, and brings each foot up to his opposite knee to tie them in order to avoid bending forward. Occasionally, I tie them for him (he loves this).

    I remember talking to the surgeon about this before we left the hospital, and he indicated that he didn't want Sidney to become too dependent. So within the guidelines, we like him to do as much as he can for himself.

    What we've been told is NO bending (or lifting over 5 lb, or twisting) at all for 3 months, and then bending only to 45 degrees until 6 months. I know every surgeon is different, and these are just general guidelines. What Sidney will be allowed to do will actually depend on what the surgeon says at follow-up appointments. We have a follow-up in just over 2 weeks, so we'll know more details then.

    Is there someone at your surgeons office you can call to get answers to specific questions? When will Tahlia next see the surgeon?

    Mary Ellen

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    108
    Thanks so much for your replies. They were really helpful. Patty, it sounds like you have quite a man there I too, stood outside the shower to help if Tahlia needed it. Initially i washed her and then gradually she became able to do things herself and i was only doing her back and washing her hair, drying her feet, etc., but now she's doing most things including her own back and when she sits she pulls her feet up onto the chair. I guess i had asked because i didn't know what was "Normal" but it sounds like you needed some months before things got back on track and you were doing things yourself, so it's good to know that. Thank you.

    Mary Ellen, what you say makes a lot of sense. I have basically been saying to Tahlia, "no bending, no twisting, sit and stand up straight", etc., etc. So it sounds like i'm doing the right things. I have also been concerned about Tahlia becoming too dependent and have consequently encouraged her to do some things herself, being mindful of the "no bend, no twist" rule. So I'm glad you have shared that with me as I now feel like I am saying and doing all the right things. Thank you.

    Tahlia's follow-up appt is 16th January. I hope he will tell us more (or should I say something) then in terms of restrictions and so on, particularly as Tahlia will be returning to school 2 weeks after that.

    Glad to hear things are well with Sidney, Mary Ellen.

    All the best for Christmas. Hope you all have a lovely holiday and new year and thanks again to both of you for your responses.

    Lisa
    xx

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    338
    Lisa--

    I think it's best to be proactive. Have a list of questions ready for the surgeon when you see him. Shriners has printed handout of restrictions timelines, and I think many surgeons do. Perhaps your doc has one of those?

    Happy holidays to you and Tahlia!

    Mary Ellen

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    1,010
    Big hugs, Lisa. You really are doing a great job. Tahlia is very soon out of surgery. This surgery takes a LONG time to fully heal. Patience on her part - and your's - is important. She's a teenager, probably a typical teenager. She'll be back to doing her own thing, and maybe even keeping details from you soon. The shower chair is a good thing to keep. She'll get rid of it when she's ready. If that is 6 weeks/months/years from now, it will go when she's ready.

    Many more hugs for a continued smooth recovery.
    Carmell
    mom to Kara, idiopathic scoliosis, Blake 19, GERD and Braydon 14, VACTERL, GERD, DGE, VEPTR #137, thoracic insufficiency, rib anomalies, congenital scoliosis, missing coccyx, fatty filum/TC, anal stenosis, horseshoe kidney, dbl ureter in left kidney, ureterocele, kidney reflux, neurogenic bladder, bilateral hip dysplasia, right leg/foot dyplasia, tibial torsion, clubfoot with 8 toes, pes cavus, single umblilical artery, etc. http://carmellb-ivil.tripod.com/myfamily/

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    42
    I remember that i liked the shower chair, it was definately a comfort, u dont want to push her! I remember my mom told me to shower downstairs, which is just a shower, no tub, and i almost passed out because of the steam. She will definatly get rid of it when she's ready, it didnt take me to long, just until i had some of my strength back u no.

    Even being 7 months post op i some times still like to sit down to tie my shoes, but not as much after 6 months. It will all come back, even the bending I no your probably tired of hearing it, but it does take time. Luckily for us that time flys by.
    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

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    336
    I'm glad to hear that Tahlia is doing so well!

    Isn't it nice to worry about using the shower chair instead of facing the surgery?

    Marian

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    108
    Quote Originally Posted by pmsmom View Post
    I'm glad to hear that Tahlia is doing so well!

    Isn't it nice to worry about using the shower chair instead of facing the surgery?

    Marian
    LOL! Thanks Marian, it's certainly good to be reminded of the importance of perspective. Not that it (using the shower chair) wasn't a legitimate worry of mine, although not now, the responses i have received have been great and helped me to re-orient my view on this. As I've always said, this is such a great site.

    Jennybear - thanks so much hun for your comments. I hve actually had my daughter read this thread so she can understand the concerns i have and share in the information that I receive. So it's great to hear from a younger person, closer to Tahlia in age. I really appreciate it and believe me, your comments have helped me relax a lot about letting her let me know when she's ready, rather than imposing unrealistic timelines on her.

    Thanks all
    *HUGS*

    Lisa

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