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Surgery Cancelled One step before going in...

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,900
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:26 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Well I went in for my surgery (the 10th of Dec.), got all prepped had everything hooked up to me, the surgeon was like 4 hours late, so I was sleepin when he finally came in and asked me.. how my arm pain was, I told him my chief complaint has been upper back pain, that the arm pain is not even noticeable cause the upper back pain was so severe, the muscles are in knots and it has pulled my ribs out of place. He seemed to be dumbfounded and said If I was not having arm pain he should not do the surgery, told me he wanted me to go and see the physical therapist at his office, I was originally going to one near my home, and sent me home, I cried all the way home!! I then went to this PT and his jaw hit the floor and he said he had never heard of such a thing from a surgeon in all his years in this field, he went back to study my chart then came back with certainty in his voice saying my symptoms are typical to the damage in those three discs and he still cannot understand why he canceled it, he canceled therapy there and said to go back to the PT I was going to, that he could not do anything more for me.. is that not unreal or what??? He then said he would contact the doctor and get back to me, well I could not wait I called the surgeon the next morning and they set up a apt. for tomorrow to talk to him about it, and all I want to hear is that he is going to do the surgery! *SIGH* Anyone ever hear of this?
I will post tomorrow to update on how it went at the surgeons, I am really anxious, stressed out about it cause I just don't know what he is going to do now? But I am convinced that I need it!


  • I am so sorry this happened to you.
    Maybe you are not meant to be with this Dr?
    Did you get a second opinion before you booked the surgery?
    Also if you see him again, are you going to have the faith in him that you need, to allow him to do this surgery for you.

    Hopefully he can fix it all and what has happened is just a mistake but to be on the safe side a second opinion is always worth it.
    Blessings Sara O:)
  • That was my first thought (other than OMG) - will you have in this doctor now since he was so wishywashy?

    Can't wait to hear what happens today!
  • Well guess what??? We got pounded by a blizzard, if you check the national weather I live in West Michigan near Lake Michigan and we have had a foot dumped over night and it is still dumping!! :jawdrop: I could not go to my appointment, cried again cause I cannot get another appointment till January 9th!!!
    I also can only get one consult with medicaid, that is all I am allowed. So second opinions are not an option, I just have to be thankful I have insurance right now.
    I called his nurse and I am waiting for her to call me back, I left a message asking if we can just reschedule the surgery. I was reminded in the chat room here by another member that the surgeon works for me!! So I need to be more aggressive in this because I know I need this surgery, and I want to go back to work soooo bad!!! :''(
  • That is so terrible. I really hope that you can get the surgery done, and that you will get better.

    Good luck to you. >:D<
  • Well, this is horrible--but there may be a silver lining. These surgeries are patient generated. We go in there and tell the docs how bad the pain is, so they end up with surgeries. The issue here is if he fuses 3 discs and they are not the pain generators, he has accomplished nothing. Also, if your symptoms have impoved to the point of no arm pain, mabye the specific surgery he had planned is irrelevant. These doctors are brilliant--they paid their dues--and I would listen to him or fire him and start fresh. These surgeries are a bear. I know the pain you have know is a bear--but it will be much worse for weeks to months and then may never get better after the surgery. If a surgeon is canceling on you the morning of the surgery based on his exam of you, THAT'S GREAT--Avoid the surgery.

  • I cannot even imagine going through what your going through. I do trust that God has His hand in everything and that there was a reason this happened.

    My Dr. was not going to do my surgery either because I am 38 and he felt I was too young. I explained to him that while I may be 38 I feel like 98.

    I pushed for the sugery and I am glad that I did, the spine was compressing on my nerve and had it seemed that this had been the cause of my pain for two years. I am hoping that I don't have a slow recovery because of this.

    I wish the best for you. Keep us posted.
  • I think most of the U.S. got a foot or more dumped on them overnight last night :( Sucks. I live in Massachusetts, and we're also still getting snow now. My boyfriend plows and was gone plowing yesterday from 4:00pm to 5:00am. It is ridiculous. He's gotta go plow again for the next storm Sat night/Sunday. UGH. Not looking to it.

    I'm sorry the snow ruins everything :( Yucky.
  • I agree. If your nerve pain went away, then surgery, or this surgery, may not be the one you need. This could be a good thing for you. Surgery isn't a guarantee the pain will go away, and in fact, if it's done when it doesn't need to be, it can make things a lot worse... You wouldn't want that. I would really see your doctor and ask him specifics as to why he thinks it shouldn't be done now, and then get a second opinion as well.
  • God definitely has His reasons. He is our greatest ally :)

    I'm thankful my doctor didn't deny me because of my age. They didn't rush right to the Fusion right away, because it's very rare for a 22 year old to need a fusion from degenerative disc disease when there is no injury or anything like that involved. Wear and tear requiring fusion at my age is very, very, very, very uncommon. I am lucky that my doctor was willing to do the surgery for me, despite my age. I feel SO much better than before surgery. It's crazy. I am so happy I went through with it. So I know what you mean about being young but feeling old. I definitely don't feel anywhere near 22. Well, I didn't... Now I feel about 40, and hopefully after physical therapy I can feel maybe late 20's. Hahaha.
  • Lo-- wow only 22? That is young....what type of surgery did you have? I did not have an accident or injury either; wear and tear too

    Take care and Happy Holidays.
  • When I reviewed my pre-op MRI with my doc last Monday, he had a resident in with him (its a teaching hospital) who said "well you don't have the spine of a 36 year old" so I said I'm 38 and he says "you don't have the spine of a 38 year of either." It wasn't a compliment! But I feel fortunate that my doctors look at my films, not my age, to determine best course of treatment.
  • Hello Mystyk,

    This may sound strange, but my gut feel is you should consider yourself very lucky. Thank goodness a spinal surgeon like that DIDN'T operate on you. I'd run away from someone like that as fast as I could. Without a doubt that doc does NOT have his act together. RUN RUN!!!!

    Now Mystyk, take the time to find the very best spinal surgeon in your area. Make an appointment with that doctor and take whatever MRIs you have with you.

    Next, make an appointment with the spinal surgeon "2nd in line" and get his/her opinion.

    I wish you the very best.

    Take care.


  • I had a MicroD in May, and then a 360 (anterior/posterior) fusion on L4-L5 Sept 26.

    You too (:
  • I'm sorry for the way you were treated by that doctor. I'm sure things will work out because you are proactive.

    I too almost did not get my surgery the day I was there-all butt naked except those lovely gowns made for an orge. I also said I had no more arm pain and he was wondering why I neeeded the surgery, but I reminded him he saw my MRI and at the time he said they do not lie and I needed the surgery. In fact we specifically asked about it at the time and he said patients come to him all the time with complaints of pain but the MRI don't show anything wrong and he won't operate. The oposite should be true as well. It was just a matter of time before the pain would come back in my opinion and I can't afford to be laid up 2 weeks due to a flare up, plus my arm WAS weak, even if it wasn't in pain at the time of the surgery. That should have been a test your doctor preformed.

    I got my spinal operation even though my arm didn't hurt-but it does now! I was told the nerve was very compressed and the touching of the nerve and the rebound effect will make it hurt now for a month or two.

    Good luck and hang in there-this is typical for the course!
  • Boy do I really know what your going through. My surgery was canceled 2 weeks ago while i was on the operating table and under anesthesia (couldn't get a proper airway). Just take it as a blessing and I'm sure everything will go well next time.
  • I am so sorry about what you have gone through. I know that you said you are on Medicaid and can only get one consult. I used to work for Medicaid at the Federal Got. Are you in a Medicaid managed care plan or is it straight Medicaid with the state? In either case I would contact the state Medicaid agency or your managed care plan and explain your situation and concerns about the surgeon and request an exception to the one appeal that you are allowed if you really do want to get an opinion with another surgeon. I would then follow this up in writing. In general, the state wants to make sure that you are getting quality care, so at times there may be a way around the one consult rule (although it may vary by state Medicaid agency). If you have more questions about how to deal with the Medicaid agency please feel free to PM me.
  • Just to touch on some of the comments, my arm pain did not "improve" it was less noticeable because my back pain was so severe. One of the nerves that is involved is causing my upper back muscles to tighten up so bad they are pulling my ribs out of place, luckily I have a great PT and he managed to get the ribs back more then they were and my back pain is not as severe especially since I am able to see him twice a week, but since I am not screaming about that pain, the pain in my arm (both arms now) is worse, I have tingling in my fingers all the time and I have pain in my shoulders like a knife, as well as waking through the night so stiff I can hardly move with massive headaches.
    I just went and seen him today, and he had a better look at the area he would go in at, and after he decided the surgery could help he noticed I have a short neck with a high collar bone so to be safe he is having a neuro surgeon join him because the discs he is working on are the bottom 3, I am glad now he held back on it, and I feel now I have a good chance of it being done right.
    Thanks for all your comments, I will let ya'll know when it is scheduled for, they have not given me a date yet, they have to contact the other surgeon and find a day they both have available, so it might be a while.
    If I do not have the surgery I know for a fact I will not be able to work again, at least this gives me a chance. I know there is no guarantee, so I am trying to be realistic about it.
  • I am so sorry. This must have been a tough few weeks for you. I have had an incident where I went in for a surgery got all prepped. Given the meds and everything and then had my surgery cancelled because of a fever. So I know what that does to you mentally. I'm glad though to hear that he will have a Neuro in on it with him. Maybe that was the blessing in disguise. I hope they can work you in soon and don't let you down again and will hopefully get you back to work pain free.
  • I do worry about people I've spoken to and I'm glad to hear there will be a neurosugeon with you, in fact, I have always assumed NS were better at these kinds of operation than orthos when pinched nerves are involved-wa is the prevalent opinion with folks here?
  • Sounds like it was a good thing it was postponed. I also have that pain situation - if one area hurts terribly, other pain seems to disappear. Like only one things can hurt severely at a time.

    My final successful was with a neurosurgeon, so for me, that is a very good thing he will be there with you!!

    Take care,

  • I've seen a couple Orthopedic surgeons and they were absolutely no help at all. I see a Neurosurgeon now and she is AMAZING, as well as the other surgeon's there, and the P.A.s. PERSONALLY, I would only want a Neuro anywhere near my spinal cord. Neurosurgeon's and Orthopedic surgeons do not receive the same training... Even Ortho's specializing in the spine do not receive the exact training Neurosurgeon's do. ESPECIALLY Neurosurgeon's that specialize in spinal surgery... That, really, is the top of the line, if you have nerve issues. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions and choices... I'm just sharing mine. I am 100 percent in favor of a Neurosurgeon, and I will never see another Ortho again.
  • Thanks for the rest of the comments, I was looking at a thread that asked "Ortho or Neuro" and I seen many preferred neuro, I have not seen the neuro surgeon yet, but my PT knows him, said he is good but do not look for a good bedside manner, my surgery is scheduled for FEB. 9th, and I have an apt. with the Neuro on the 4th, and I wrote out a history so that I can just give it to him and he can read it.
    In that thread I put "both!!" LOL
    I am very relieved to have both in it. I wonder though if it is going to be that difficult to get to the lower area of my spine from the front what would they do? Any thoughts?
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