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Thread: T4-S1 with pelvic fixation - I'd like to be able to tie my own shoes!

  1. #16
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    Oct 2008
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    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
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    "At my autopsy" I love it!
    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

  2. #17
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    When I go for pedicures, I regularly see men getting one of their own. Many of these guys are young and fit, so one assumes that they're doing it because it's convenient and fun.

    --Linda
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Twain
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Arizona
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    Congratulations on your so far successful recovery! I haven't had surgery yet, upcoming in January, but I thought that bending and twisting was not allowed until you had achieved a solid fusion. What instructions did your surgeon give you as far as attempting things like tying shoelaces and clipping toenails? Are you allowed to work on doing these things now? I'm so worried I will be inadvertently doing more bending during recovery than is good for me.
    Before 39* lumbar at age 18, progressed to 74* lumbar and 22* thoracic age 55
    ALIF Jan 13, 2015, PLIF Jan 15, 2015 with Dr William Stevens, Honor Health
    Fused T-7 to S-1 with pelvic fixation

    After 38* lumbar

    Xrays
    Before: http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...7&d=1414268930

    After: http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...6&d=1424894360

  4. #19
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    Jan 2012
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    Liz, you are right: no bending at the waist. Bending at the hips is OK. You are totally right about thinking that you might do some bending and twisting that is inappropriate. I have tried to twist to see oncoming traffic at a ramp which comes in at an awkward angle in Portland. Immediate pain stops that activity quickly. Susan
    Last edited by susancook; 11-26-2014 at 01:24 PM.
    Adult Onset Degen Scoliosis @65, 25* T & 36* L w/ 11.2 cm coronal balance; T kyphosis 90*; Sev disc degen T & L stenosis

    2013: T3- S1 Fusion w/ ALIF L4-S1/XLIF L2-4, PSF T4-S1 2 surgeries
    2014: Hernia @ ALIF repaired; Emergency screw removal SCI T4,5 sec to PJK
    2015: Rev Broken Bil T & L rods and no fusion: 2 revision surgeries; hardware P. Acnes infection
    2016: Ant/Lat Lumbar diskectomy w/ 4 cages + BMP + harvested bone
    2018: Removal L4,5 screw
    2021: Removal T1 screw & rod

  5. #20
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    Dec 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by susancook View Post
    Your previous comment: With respect to a "pedicure", i thought of that... and still think of that... but, I can's (yet) get past the image thing!
    Mark, Can't get past the image thing? Have it done in Hillsboro where nobody knows you. Or you can come with me and I promise not to point and laugh at you too often. ;@ ) hahahahahahahahaha[/QUOTE]

    Actually, if the leg massage includes a foot massage, that part I know I would enjoy. I'm actually not that shy. Now, when it comes to the part of selecting the type of acrylic/polish I would have to say "none">

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lizardacres View Post
    Congratulations on your so far successful recovery! I haven't had surgery yet, upcoming in January, but I thought that bending and twisting was not allowed until you had achieved a solid fusion. What instructions did your surgeon give you as far as attempting things like tying shoelaces and clipping toenails? Are you allowed to work on doing these things now? I'm so worried I will be inadvertently doing more bending during recovery than is good for me.
    Hi...

    You need to check with your surgeon for specific instructions. I think we generally tell patients to observe the No BLT (bending/lifting/twisting) restriction for 3 months. Fusion is not complete at that time, but it's usually got a decent start. When I had my original surgeries 20+ years ago, I was told no BLT for 5-6 months. The truth is that, as far as I know, no one has actually studied how long we're vulnerable.

    Humans don't actually bend very much at the waist, so it's not as much of a problem as it might seem. When you're in a seated position, your torso and upper legs form a 90 degree angle. We tell patients not to break that 90 degrees. That means, when you're seated, you're not supposed to bend forward (which can be especially difficult when you're eating). I taught myself to bring food up to my mouth on plates or in bowls. And, I can tell you that those of us who didn't have to wear a postop brace probably broke that 90 degree rule at least some of the time.

    Example of bending at hips

    --Linda
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Twain
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation

  7. #22
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    Apr 2012
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    San Jose, CA
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    567
    I didn't bend at all - not from the hips, not from the waste, etc for 6 months. I thought this is what UCSF told me, but may be I was too drugged up. Anyway, I decided better safe than sorry and no BLT for 6 months. I am an accountant and follow the rules to the t not just in my professional life, but eveywhere haha.

    I brushed my teeth standing straight up with two cups or in the shower. Didn't attempt to tie any shoes or clip toenails for 6 months. Only used grabbers to pick things of the floor, no oven use (slow cooker instead). Might be an overkill, but it served me well, knock on the wood.

    I would recommend people facing the surgery to start practicing things like log rolling ahead of time so that you get into a habbit of proper getting in and out of the bed without twisting.
    I am stronger than scoliosis, and won't let it rule my life!
    45 years old - diagnosed at age 7
    A/P surgery on March 5/7, 2013 - UCSF

  8. #23
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    Lightbulb Tying shoes

    Quote Originally Posted by mkatz View Post
    I'm 67, 4+ months out of surgery, progressing fairly nicely in terms of energy, reduced pain, improved muscle strength... able to walk miles comfortably at a reasonable pace (5+ miles at 3.2mph on relatively flat grade, to be precise). My "major goals" include being able to tie my own shoes and clip my own toenails . (Having my wife clip my toenails makes me fear that she will amputate one of my toes in the process ) Given the extant of my fusion are my goals realistic? (when? ever?)

    Before someone suggests relying upon slip-on shoes, I should remark that I find tie-on hiking shoes/boots to provide greater stability and security.
    In the earlier part of my long recovery my husband cut my toenails-along with the surrounding skin.
    I now do everything myself. I just bring feet up to my chair or a slightly lower table in front of me. The only thing I might need help with are high-laced hiking boots-the side hooks.
    Original scoliosis surgery 1956 T-4 to L-2 ~100 degree thoracic (triple)curves at age 14. NO hardware-lost correction.
    Anterior/posterior revision T-4 to Sacrum in 2002, age 60, by Dr. Boachie-Adjei @Hospital for Special Surgery, NY = 50% correction

  9. #24
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    Dec 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karen Ocker View Post
    In the earlier part of my long recovery my husband cut my toenails-along with the surrounding skin.
    I now do everything myself. I just bring feet up to my chair or a slightly lower table in front of me. The only thing I might need helpI with are high-laced hiking boots-the side hooks.
    Interesting: You are able to reach your toenails using a clipper but are not able to reach the lower part of your ankle? I was thinking that tying higher ("mid" hikers, for example) would be easier than tying low hikers.

  10. #25
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    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by mkatz View Post
    Interesting: You are able to reach your toenails using a clipper but are not able to reach the lower part of your ankle? I was thinking that tying higher ("mid" hikers, for example) would be easier than tying low hikers.
    The reason for that is, once the foot is in the boot, there is less flexibility in the ankle and then I need to twist a little- not a good idea-to work the lace around the 3 or 4 terminal hooks.
    Original scoliosis surgery 1956 T-4 to L-2 ~100 degree thoracic (triple)curves at age 14. NO hardware-lost correction.
    Anterior/posterior revision T-4 to Sacrum in 2002, age 60, by Dr. Boachie-Adjei @Hospital for Special Surgery, NY = 50% correction

  11. #26
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    Dec 2013
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    39
    Quote Originally Posted by Karen Ocker View Post
    The reason for that is, once the foot is in the boot, there is less flexibility in the ankle and then I need to twist a little- not a good idea-to work the lace around the 3 or 4 terminal hooks.
    Good explanation! I wonder if I could locate hiking boots that are designed to be tightened/adjusted with laces and the opened/closed with a side zipper? Gotta do an online search. One of my friends told me that the military (Vietnam war era) retrofitted jungle boots in that fashion to allow rapid donning of boots.


    ______ Just did a Google search and found several medial-side zippered boots that might be suitable: with laces and zipper (for easy entry/exit)!
    Last edited by mkatz; 12-01-2014 at 11:33 PM.

  12. #27
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    May 2008
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    reno,nevada
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    Mark, be patient it will come.....I waited till I was around 7-8 months before even attempting any stretching or pulling down.

    Here are some photos of me bending so you can see the positions....also tying shoes with chair and without.

    Ed
    Attached Images Attached Images
    49 yr old male, now 62, the new 63...
    Pre surgery curves T70,L70
    ALIF/PSA 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

  13. #28
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    And some more.....Of all these photos, I started perfecting Squat 1 first at the kitchen counter unloading dishes from my dishwasher right after surgery. Always keep spine erect.....The penny is there because with rising medical insurance rates, older males being in the most expensive group and have to learn to pick up pennies.....(That's no joke)
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by titaniumed; 12-01-2014 at 11:10 PM.
    49 yr old male, now 62, the new 63...
    Pre surgery curves T70,L70
    ALIF/PSA 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
    Dec 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post
    Mark, be patient it will come.....I waited till I was around 7-8 months before even attempting any stretching or pulling down.

    Here are some photos of me bending so you can see the positions....also tying shoes with chair and without.

    Ed
    Ed, Thank you!! pictures were very helpful. Note that I am jealous of your flexibility .

    With respect to having patience, that is great advice but is difficult for me to implement. The key problem with me being patient is that I believe there is, realistically, no way of determining if a firm fusion has been effected, short of the onset of critical (obvious) failure or autopsy. Radiographic evaluation will reveal the presence of bony deficiencies but does not clearly distinguish between formed bone and un-resorbed graft material. (I'm a retire periodontist with lots of experience doing bone grafts.) Thus, until I am able to test function aggressively (in 6-12 months additional time post-op?) I worry about the possibility that when that test occurs it will reveal failure.

    No, I do not spend all of my time worrying, but periodically it does break through.

    Meanwhile, I've progressed to working on my flexibility (waist down) in a warm water pool, working aggressively (wall-sitting, treadmill on incline,...)on lower body, cardiac and core strength, and (recently) starting light weight arm exercises.

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by titaniumed View Post
    And some more.....Of all these photos, I started perfecting Squat 1 first at the kitchen counter unloading dishes from my dishwasher right after surgery. Always keep spine erect.....The penny is there because with rising medical insurance rates, older males being in the most expensive group and have to learn to pick up pennies.....(That's no joke)
    Ed... You're able to hook a sock over your foot with one hand? That's definitely a feat (or feet, haha).
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Twain
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation

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