Sarahs Mum aka Chrissy
10th October 2004, 02:23 PM
We take Sarah for her appointment at Nuffield tomorrow to see the surgeon.
I have a list of things to ask as she will be undergoing an operation.
As she is only 12 years old, does any of you guys know exactly what questions I should ask?
Any input would be appreciated.

Best wishes,


10th October 2004, 02:28 PM
I've never had surgery so I don't have any words of wisdom, sorry :oops: But I wanted to wish you and Sarah good luck :squeeze:

10th October 2004, 03:19 PM
Hmmm....off the top of my head, I would ask the following questions:

Which part of Sarah's spine is going to be fused?
How many vertebrae will be fused?
Where will the get the bone for the fusion - ie, from her hip, ribs, or from a bone bank?
What sort of metalwork is going to be used?
How long will she have to spend in hospital?
How long will her recovery time be, once out of hospital?
What activities should she avoid whilst recovering?
What pain relief will she be given?
Will she need to wear a brace after the surgery? If so, how long for?

I'm sure the others will be able to add to this! Hope it helps :-)

10th October 2004, 07:43 PM
I think that knowing whether she'll be having anterior or posterior surgery is something important. Excuse me if you already know and I am just being silly, but if she has anterior, she will most probably be having her surgery at the John Radcliffe in Oxford and then be driven back to the Nuffield after a couple of days. This is what was done with me and I'm sure the approach will affect things for Sarah, too. Either way, you are in safe hands.

10th October 2004, 09:18 PM
I would ask:

Since she is only 12, are they going to do anything to allow for continued growth of her spine?

Sarahs Mum aka Chrissy
10th October 2004, 10:38 PM
Thanks everyone who has answered so far.
This has made it a bit easier for us and has given me some thought to the questions I will ask.

Will let you know the outcome soon after the 11th October.

Kind regards,

10th October 2004, 11:25 PM
Good luck Sarah and Chrissy.
We'll be thinking of you.

11th October 2004, 04:45 PM
Hey i'm thiking of you both.....let us know how it went.
Love and prayers Abbi x

11th October 2004, 05:47 PM
good luck :squeeze:

Amazed Jean
11th October 2004, 06:08 PM
Good Luck and take your time with the doctor.

11th October 2004, 08:30 PM
Good Luck!!!

I may be a bit late but here goes with the questions:

What kind of intrumentation?
What are the degrees of the curves?
Will she get blood tranfustion from a blood bank or can she donate blood pre-op?
Will they be doing a costoplasty?

Ummm... I can't remember what else I asked. (I had my surgery at 13)

Let us know how it went!

Sarahs Mum aka Chrissy
12th October 2004, 04:47 PM
Thanks for all the helpful advice everyone. We saw Mr Fairbank yesterday after a 3 hour wait - very tiring.
He will be doing a posterior incision, taking bone for the fusion from her ribs. Unfortunately it seems the operation won't happen for another 6 months which is a very depressing prospect. Annoyingly we didn't ask whether the curve will be much worse by then as, disappointingly, we felt we were being rushed by Mr Fairbanks as we were his last appointment of the day. Did anybody else have to wait this long for surgery, and if so, how much did the curve progress? We also felt, as with our original consultant at Heatherwood Hospital, that they don't seem to be that concerned with the pain that Sarah is experiencing. The suggestion seems to be that the pain is being caused by something else.
We're considering contacting Great Ormond Street as it's possible their waiting list for surgery isn't as long.
Any comments as always greatly welcome.


12th October 2004, 06:02 PM
Hi Chrissy.It's unfortunate that you got that kind of rushed appointment.
Six months isn't a terribly long waiting period, there are some others here who will make your blood curdle with the length of their waiting lists.It seems to be down to geographical location as to how soon you will be seen.
In those six months I think it's fair to say you could expect some deterioration of the curve especially as she starts her growth spurt.How much is impossible to say, but at least with modern instrumentation and techniques, it's possible to tackle larger curves successfully.
I would imagine her spine is very flexible and will correct well.
Certainly check out Great Ormond Street for waiting lists but perhaps you may not do a whole lot better than where you already are.
Many here will tell you that they have pain with scoliosis and I've heard it over and over it again from patients on other boards.It's tough that Sarah is having pain but hopefully after the surgery it will resolve.If you can get her to swim and keep her spine as flexible as possible it may help with the aches and pains.In the meanwhile I guess you could try massaging the sore muscles and applying a microwaveable barley bag that you can buy in Boots.This is very soothing for aching muscles and doesn't have any side effects and a 12 yr old shouldn't object to it.
Hopefully she's not too traumatised by the long delay and rushed appointment.

12th October 2004, 07:00 PM
Hey Chrissy. As I was 19 when I've had my surgery, my curve didn't progress (or maybe a few degrees). At first, I had to wait for a month. I live in Belgium, and my surgeon isn't really famous for what he does, although he did a good job. I asked to wait for another 10 months, so my surgery would be right before summer break.
I know six months seems like a very long time, but on the other side, you've still got time enough to learn more and more about scoliosis. Finding this side gave me loads of answers, and I'm sure that's one of the reasons why I wasn't stressed -at all- in the hospital.
I wish you and Sarah the best of luck and if there's anything you want to discuss, just come here :-)

12th October 2004, 08:34 PM
im sorri that you had to wait so long, and that u felt rushed...i hate that, its like that at GP's offices, cos the only allocate about 5mins per patient!
6months is anawful long time....how ling have you been waiting so far?
I dunno what type of surgery I will need,....i think both tho! (like jonny) and i think the waiting list is 12-18mths cos im on the adult list!
I hope everything works out for you and sarah!

12th October 2004, 09:54 PM
Oh I second the wheat bag idea, I've got a couple and they're very soothing.

12th October 2004, 11:44 PM
Although once again I have managed to set fire to my new one in the microwave again.......darn chicken nuggets..... :lol: This time I managed to perform a meticulous salvage surgery with a needle and thread...phew!! They cost 17.

13th October 2004, 12:45 AM
I know I shouldn't laugh but really Sins :D you're mad, lovely but mad :rofl: You're the only person I know that sets fire to those things.

Both my heat bags were gifts from my Mum to help ease my back but they're not too expensive here(5) though I think she likes to help however she can. :D They are fab and so are Mum's.

Can you tell I've had a few to many pills today? :hunny:

Amazed Jean
13th October 2004, 12:51 AM
Chrissy, Leona etc. We have a couple of those microwavable sacks around here I think one has rice in it and the other I swear feels like beans. They work though and if we ever get really hungry

13th October 2004, 12:53 AM
Mine has lavender in it which Craig hates but I think it's nice and soothing :D

13th October 2004, 01:01 AM
oh my goodness you set fire to it.....!!! hehehe so funny! sorri but it is! yeah they dnt cost that much ere....like 7 at most!

Sarahs Mum aka Chrissy
13th October 2004, 04:48 PM
Great idea about the wheat bag - I think my Mums has one for her aches and pains.
I'll try not to do a Sins on it though! LOL!!

Luv Chrissy and Sarah