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Thread: Help!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    44

    Help!!

    Could I have heaps of suggestions with what is normal at the 3 week mark.
    I know everyone is different but please some advice would be great.
    The Dr. Has her on panadol and ibruferen now. It doesnt seem quite enough as she is experiencing alot of pain. He doesnt want her on anything that will interfere with her bowels as they are still problematic.
    She has been on Digesics since we got home, then yesterday we changed over to just the panadol and nurofen.
    Her hand still isnt moving although she is still noticing gradual changes in her sensation. Still praying like buggery. Am now praying to Mother Mary Mackillop(about to be announced as Australia first Saint!!) Thankyou for everyones prayers and continued prayers.
    Should there still be lots of tears at 3 weeks???? I just cannot remember anything I have read on this forum from before the surgery.
    Just need advice and experiences.
    Also, shoud she be crouching down, Almost like squatting? I think not but she does it alot. I think it is giving her lower back pain.
    Looking forward to all your experiences and advice.
    Donna.
    Mother to 14 year old daughter, Gabrielle (Gabby).
    Discovered her scoliosis on her 14th Birthday in February 2009. Due to be operated on for curves of 57 and 54 degrees (S Curve) in December 2009 with Dr. Askin in Brisbane.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    3,261
    Donna, if Gabby is still in a lot of pain, please contact Dr. Askin or your GP. I can't see the need for her to be in such pain. Three weeks out, I was only just home from hospital and on Oxycontin, Endone and Paracetamol. And stayed on it for several more weeks. I am sure Dr. Askin won't want her to be still in pain. I realise a 14 y.o. is a lot different to a 57 y.o. but it doesn't seem right to be in terrible pain.

    It sounds promising for her hand Donna. Has her right arm/side come right yet?

    Squatting is ok, though I don't think I was doing much of anything at 3 weeks. It's still such early days. If you think it's causing back pain, ask her to hold off for at least another couple of weeks. Why is she squatting?

    I'm so sorry you're having these problems. I can't imagine how scary it has been for you. But it's still very early days and I think it's a difficult time for most scoli patients this early out from surgery. Don't lose sight of the fact that this is all going to come right Donna. You just need time.

    I would do something about that pain though. This must be killing you seeing her like this, you poor thing. Get that pain under control and she will sleep better and improve much faster, I bet!
    Surgery March 3, 2009 at almost 58, now 63.
    Dr. Askin, Brisbane, Australia
    T4-Pelvis, Posterior only
    Osteotomies and Laminectomies
    Was 68 degrees, now 22 and pain free

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    3,261
    Oh and for constipation, try Nulax, available in chemists. But go easy on it, it almost works too well!

    Nothing in the hospital helped me, but Nulax worked within 3 hours.
    Surgery March 3, 2009 at almost 58, now 63.
    Dr. Askin, Brisbane, Australia
    T4-Pelvis, Posterior only
    Osteotomies and Laminectomies
    Was 68 degrees, now 22 and pain free

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    44
    Hi Jen,
    great to hear from you
    She gets out of bed and starts walking and then will stop for a bit and squat. I think it is to rest. She is now walking a bit like a little old lady...bent forward.
    I bought some nulax yesterday. I tried it first before i suggested she take it. I had pains about 4 hours later. It did work. Did you get pain with yours?
    I think i will try her on something with codeine in it today. But i will ring Dr. Askin. I just want her off the narcotics, because I think she is being a little affected mentally with them...as in highs and lows. I don't really know, it could just be all pain too.
    I am so unqualified for this. I feel like a goose trying to work out the right and wrong things to do.
    Donna xo
    Mother to 14 year old daughter, Gabrielle (Gabby).
    Discovered her scoliosis on her 14th Birthday in February 2009. Due to be operated on for curves of 57 and 54 degrees (S Curve) in December 2009 with Dr. Askin in Brisbane.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Near Houston, TX
    Posts
    495
    Sheena was still in quite a bit of pain at 3 weeks. Everyone kept saying 3 or 4 weeks was the turning point, but it didn't happen until about 5 weeks. She still wanted to lay down most of the time. She took herself off the narcotics at 3.5 weeks because it was making her depressed (crying at nothing at all) and she couldn't focus her attention well enough to read or do much of anything. I think she should have stayed on it another week but I let her make that decision. She was put on tylenol, doctor didn't allow ibuprofen for 6 months.

    I don't remember her ever crouching. I think she was walking around the house a bit but would just go lay down if she was tired. She didn't do much until she returned to school at 7 weeks at which time, she was able to go the entire day.

    I hope Gabby will be feeling well soon.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    3,261
    Oh I see, she is squatting to rest. It must be comfortable for her to be in the squatting position? I can't see that it would do her any harm if it isn't hurting to do it.

    Yes, Nulax can be very powerful, so very small doses to start off with. I had pains, but then I hadn't "been" for 9 days and had a tummy full of other concoctions the hospital had given me! So it was bound to be unpleasant. So just a little bit to start off with, to get things moving. I was able to take small amounts each day and became regular again fairly quickly. Less than a week.

    We are all unqualified for this, but it all seems to work out. It's an extremely difficult time, especially for you. You're the one anticipating every problem, wondering if you're doing the right thing, watching your daughter in pain and having difficulties. It's very hard. I'd much prefer to have the surgery than one of my kids.

    We're all barracking for you and Gabby, Donna. Keep up the good work, you'll start to see daylight soon.
    Surgery March 3, 2009 at almost 58, now 63.
    Dr. Askin, Brisbane, Australia
    T4-Pelvis, Posterior only
    Osteotomies and Laminectomies
    Was 68 degrees, now 22 and pain free

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    3,261
    Sherie just reminded me. The Ibuprofen. Dr. Askin put me on it briefly, about day 4, but it didn't help and he returned me to the Paracetamol, in combination with Oxycontin - he said it made the Oxy work in a slightly different way and you get a two-way benefit. But when I questioned him about the Ibuprofen, he said it was ok at the point I was at - the first week post-op. But when you speak to him, I would definitely ask about the Ibuprofen again, just in case...it's supposed to hinder fusion. Having said that, I have faith in Dr. Askin knowing the right thing to do.
    Surgery March 3, 2009 at almost 58, now 63.
    Dr. Askin, Brisbane, Australia
    T4-Pelvis, Posterior only
    Osteotomies and Laminectomies
    Was 68 degrees, now 22 and pain free

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    8,901
    Quote Originally Posted by JenniferG View Post
    We are all unqualified for this, but it all seems to work out.
    I agree with this.

    All bets are off because of the drug reaction. But I would be standing on someone's desk about the pain plus crouching... can't recall reading any testimonial with that combination. Pain alone at three weeks is expected but the crouching is odd in my opinion. What levels were fused?

    When is the next radiograph scheduled?

    Ibuprofen? Isn't that not allowed until the fusion happens? Am I wrong about that? I thought only Tylenol in that period.

    Last, it sounds like there has been progress on regaining the nerve function. That is going to come back completely.

    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."

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    424

    my 5c worth, cause we don't have 2c anymore

    While i was on Endone 5mg, i used to take 2 coloxyl tabs at night to prevent constipation. I quit my pain meds on day 15 post-op, but due to still being a little immobile (walking, but not a lot), I had fruit smoothies, and added Flaxseed Meal. When my appetite returned a little more, i went back to having 2 kiwi fruit per day (at about 8 weeks). Thats about it for the digestive side.

    When i read about her hunching over, all i could think about was, how in the morning, i could stand nice and straight, but as the day progressed, i would be hunched over as well. I could only put this down to the muscles being so weak and it was a way for your body to say, "please lay me down, i need to rest as i can't hold you up anymore". After a half hour lie down, i was good to go again. With regards to squatting, i think i did it for the first time, when i was eight weeks post-op (without thinking!!!), then i panicked because, i remembered the physio saying, if you do squat, squat level with your knees, don't let your butt drop past your knees (i guess due to pull on the back).

    With regards to the Ibuprofen, i was told not to use Nurofen or Aspirin for any pain relief as it impaired fusion. Was told that once there was evidence of fusion, it would be ok. I don't know if this meant - immediately after surgery or not, but i have not commenced taking these meds anyway. As Jen said and I agree, the surgeons do know what they are doing and i know that i wholeheartedly trust mine.

    I would definitely ring Dr. Askin, if only to have a chat about what is going on, and this way he may be able to advise you further. I would let him know asap due to Christmas being here.

    Donna, hopefully things will settle real fast, its definitely not a walk in the park but i believe that give it a couple more weeks and she should hit a turning point. Everyone is different and so are their recoveries. Scoliosis surgery, i feel is like having a newborn - it doesn't come with a set of instructions and there are no right or wrong answers - its an experience!

    Best wishes to you Donna and Gabby.
    Vali
    44 years young! now 45
    Surgery - June 1st, 2009
    Dr David Hall - Adelaide Spine Clinic
    St. Andrews Hospital, Adelaide, South Australia
    Pre-op curve - 58 degree lumbar
    Post -op - 5 degrees
    T11 - S1 Posterior
    L4/5 - L5/S1 Anterior Fusion

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    13
    Hi - i am sorry i have not visited the forum for some time as would have loved to help you as we are on the Gold Coast. Our daughter Kaitlin had surgery Feb 08 in Brisbane with Dr. Tuffley and Dr. McPhee (she is 14, 15 in March). Anyway in answer to your question i do think at the 3 week mark there was not what i would call significant pain and Kaitlin had returned to school (very) part time. The week in hospital we were on heavy pain relief, the first week home i think Panadene Forte and a bit of Endone. She was very careful and touchy about things though, i guess its very natural they are a little scared for themselves and unsure of how solid this fusion is. I will go back over your posts to see if i can help in any other way. Just to let you know as well things are great with her now, not exactly an easy road is it but life is just normal now and i am glad we had it done, Melinda

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