Scoliosis Support

Scoliosis Support (http://www.scoliosis-support.org/index.php)
-   Kyphosis, Lordosis and Flatback Room (http://www.scoliosis-support.org/forumdisplay.php?f=27)
-   -   17 months post op update. (http://www.scoliosis-support.org/showthread.php?t=17717)

mistakendrop 2nd March 2014 09:46 AM

17 months post op update.
 
Hey everyone! sorry its been so long, I've wanted to update sooner but just haven't got around to it yet. for those who don't know me I had kyphosis/scoliosis corrective surgery 17 months ago at the age of 23.
Well its been a long battle I wish I had nothing but good news to share but its just not the case. I ended up never returning to work in the grocery store because the job was just to physically demanding. I really can't do much of any of the stuff I could do before surgery. Im in pain a lot of the time that I am out and about doing things. the pain is not getting worse its getting better but very very slowly. When its cold out all my muscles cramp up and my back hurts very bad. some days are better then others I have had some pain free days I don't know what causes them and there rare but they do happen and I am thankful for them. My doctor says it just takes time and to him it sounds more like a muscle issue I guess, he says I need to be more active and perhaps return to physical therapy. Im not sure if I regret the surgery or not..maybe one day I will fully heal but I don't think its normal to be in this much pain this long after the surgery. I use to make good money now I don't make anything and have to live off my mom. I don't want to sit here and cry to everyone but people need to hear both sides. Thoughts of another surgery scare me bad I never want to go through that again. I can only stand for a few hours at a time before everything aches bad from my neck to my tailbone. it still hurts to bend over and I cant lift anything heavy. Not all is bad tho I get to spend a lot of time with friends and family playing games and watching Netflix. Im doing very well with my music and have progressed a lot with that. I try to stay happy but sometimes get very depressed about all the activities I use to be able to do. I was in pain before surgery but nothing like this and there wasnt much I couldn't do. I would also like to say that I Love my current posture. I will try and upload some pics pre-op, and when I get around to taking them I will upload the post-ops. take care,
Mathias

Rod Stewart 3rd March 2014 04:36 AM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
Mathias

One of the things that happens to many of us is the tightness or gripping in our thoracic(upper spine) area. I call it the bear traps since it grips and holds. This happens mostly when the winter storms approach, in that the low atmospheric pressure allows the nerve cells to expand in the scar tissue around our paraspinal muscles and soft tissues in the surgical area. It seems like its in the 4 inch wide surgical zone only.....After 6 years now, this it what I have experienced, only during the winter months so its cold related. I have been in summer storms and have not felt the bear traps and during the summers I have no issues whatsoever. This past week the storms have been hitting the west coast and travelling across the country. Its been a tough week for sure. As spring comes, things will get easier. There have been many weather related bear trap threads on NSF through the years.

My second year of recovery was what I call my fine tuning year....it was the year of re-building all the muscles and soft tissues that were basically neglected during the 1st year of my recovery. Being a skier for my whole life, this process was an extremely difficult one and almost quit skiing. It was basically about pushing past the pain.....it took quite a bit of determination but I did it. My surgeon warned me about sleeping all the time, and I do agree with your surgeon about getting out there and being active. It seems that we have to be active, the times I was sedentary, laying around was when the aches and pains elevated.

There are some fantastic hiking spots in Colorado!....I skied there decades ago and at most of Colorado’s ski areas and it might not be a bad idea to go out there and check it out....take a pair of ski poles for support. I do a fair amount of hiking when I can and have actually picked some tough hikes and barely made it out! When you have to worry about bears, you wont think about your back....it’s a kind of forced physical therapy program. He he There are way too many bears hanging out in Lake Tahoe these past few years and are issuing hunting tags since there are thousands of them now....

I had a broken shoulder and arm when I did my scoli surgeries. After 8 months I had a surgery to have it repaired and my shoulder surgeon wanted me in PT ASAP. After a few weeks of that, I used an arm bike where you pedal with your arms. The weird muscle feelings in my upper back after surgery and the muscles laying over the screw heads had to be toughened up and this machine worked great at this. You can use soup cans to emulate this motion. I would do it forward and reverse in 10 inch circles, I did this everyday for around 6 months.

You can see how I “pushed past the pain”. It’s an exercise in adaptability that we are so good at. Think about the things you can do on a physical level and you will see that its worth the effort. Daily exercise is very important.....not only for the body but for the mind. Remember to stay positive in all that you do even when things are hard or seem hard.....

These surgeries take years to recover from....and you will recover and do just fine.

Hang in there

Ed

mistakendrop 5th March 2014 08:55 AM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
thanks for the reply ed you make a lot of great points. I am going to try harder at getting more physical. I have been sort of lazy lately and I bet that is causing a lot of my pain. yes here in Colorado there are great places to hike just twenty minutes from my home! thanks for the support.
mathias

GillyG 5th March 2014 06:10 PM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
Lovely to hear from you again, I hope you can get your life back on track soon :)

bigdrummeboy 14th March 2014 07:46 PM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Rod Stewart (Post 269187)
Mathias

One of the things that happens to many of us is the tightness or gripping in our thoracic(upper spine) area. I call it the bear traps since it grips and holds. This happens mostly when the winter storms approach, in that the low atmospheric pressure allows the nerve cells to expand in the scar tissue around our paraspinal muscles and soft tissues in the surgical area. It seems like its in the 4 inch wide surgical zone only.....After 6 years now, this it what I have experienced, only during the winter months so its cold related. I have been in summer storms and have not felt the bear traps and during the summers I have no issues whatsoever. This past week the storms have been hitting the west coast and travelling across the country. Its been a tough week for sure. As spring comes, things will get easier. There have been many weather related bear trap threads on NSF through the years.

What is NSF? I think i'm experiencing this bear trap gripping you speak of. My muscles hurt so bad up there.

Rod Stewart 15th March 2014 01:57 AM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
Mike, It’s the National Scoliosis Foundation. They have a forum and I post as Titaniumed. We have some great posters....but not that many kyphosis patients for some reason......Join up and introduce yourself....

http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/forum.php

I used an arm bike in my shoulder therapy and it really helped toughen up the muscles in the thoracic. Of course, start this slowly.....The upper arm motion really triggers the muscles and in scolis these are so uneven and feel so strange....

At 7 months, your early and things will mellow out soon.....Hang in there.

I picked Rod Stewart here because Jose Cuervo was taken.....You cant win them all you know? LOL

Ed

bigdrummeboy 17th March 2014 06:40 PM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
Thank you Ed. I will join today. I wish i continued the arm bike thing longer. Maybe the stifness would've gone away by now. I am working out 4x a week however. I though that wouldve helped.

scottbartz 26th March 2014 01:18 PM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
Mathias, Ed makes the best point about staying active. I am about 2-1/2 years out of surgery now and still get pretty wrecked from a day on the couch. The NCAA tourney is KILLING me!

But seriously, stay active and do things every day like stretching and lifting your arms over your head and, if you have access to an arm bike, it really makes a huge difference. The soup can idea is OK but kind of a pain to mimic the same motion effectively. I was lucky to have some incredible people at my PT place and they let me come use the arm bike after my insurance visits expired (provided it was not in use. Sometimes I would have to wait up to an hour, but so worth it). Also, working on my core has helped a ton. Crunches and planks and side planks done properly will really suck at first, but they do for everyone. After you get into it and start to build up some stamina, the extra core strength relieves a lot of the strain on your back. Your abs hold you up as much as your back muscles, after all.

Good luck and let us know how you're doing.

Scott

rob0225 4th April 2014 04:24 AM

Re: 17 months post op update.
 
I'm 2.5 years post op and still deal with pain as well. Not extreme pain but more discomfort, but enough so that I still use tramadol. And also experience the tightening in the chest at times, this normally comes up the longer I go between med doses.
One thing I do find is things get worse the less active I am. So just sitting around alot makes things worse. I occasionally work out, cardio stuff, weights and play racquetball and golf. I feel MUCH better on the days I do that stuff, I guess because the muscles are getting stretch and used more.

It takes time and is different for each one of us. Best of luck and hope you keep improving.


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 10:09 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
(c) Scoliosis Support