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so scared

shirleysshirley Posts: 201
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:36 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
hosp rang me today and told me i had an appointment which i missed, no one told me i had an app today, anyway he said they want to go ahead with 360 fusion at L4/L5 and while they got me on table they will repair pars fracture as well, they dont want it giving me more problems later on, why would they need to do this if im going to be fused at the same area ? go hosp on tues to talk about the op, he has already put me on waiting list. so scared to have it done, knew it was a possibility but now it is becoming reality nerves have really kicked in, in need of some major support please :S
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Comments

  • I know you're scared and we've all been there at one time or another. I don't have an answer to your question, I just wanted to let you know that I'm thinking of you. Is this your first surgery (I'm assuming so from your signature)?

    Maybe it would help to talk to your surgeon about some anti-anxiety meds to take until your surgery. My surgeon offered me Xanax and I took him up on it. That took the edge off.

    For many here, the pre-op anxiety and anticipation were worse than the surgery itself. Once it's done, then it's all up to you to heal and get better. For me, just knowing I was past the whole operation and hospital thing made me feel much better.

    Take care of yourself and feel free to PM me if you need to talk.

    Cath
  • Indeed as cath says, don't be afraid to tell your doctors how scared you are. I had such a rough time after my shoulder replacement even the SCS surgery scared the **** out of me!

    I would like to add, Xanax does not work for me. I do well with valium, so keep that in mind should you get something for anxiety and it does not work!

    You'll probably feel better after talking with the doctor more, hang in there!
  • I think they want to repair the pars so that there is a better fit for the instrumentation, and so there will not be movement in that segment of the spine. You will be fused between the two vertebrae, but this area does not technically include the pars....think of it as the rim of a pie crust that is a little higher and serves to hold in the pie filling...does that make sense?

    I picked up a couple relaxation CDs to cope with the pre-surgery anxiety. They even make them specifically for surgical patients. You can also practice deep breathing techniques that will relax you. I wanted something that I could use in the hospital in the event my surgery was delayed.

    I must have been psychic as they took me into the holding area (where my family could not go) right on time for my 3 p.m. surgery...one by one it emptied out until I was athe last patient left. All the staff were heading home for the night and here I was, all by myself! Both my surgeon and the anesthesiologist were detained in two separate surgeries...and we didn't get going until 6:30. I think if I hadn't prepared myself, the wait would have been horrendous.

    Figure out ways that you can relax....stress just increases the level of pain you feel. Think of all your friends on the board who've been through similar and were just as nervous before the surgery as you are. Before you know it, it will be over and you will be beginning your long journey toward recovery.

    Blessings,
    Gwennie
  • Sorry about your news. Of course you are scared, but just think that after your recovery you hopefully will have so much less pain and can start living again.
    I am scared too about my ALIF, which my surgeon said has the potential to be a 360 depending on what they find.
    Stay in touch with us here for support. Let us know when you are scheduled and how you are feeling.
  • i will give you an update on tues, i have yet to meet with surgeon, i live in the uk and ive been seeing the specialist physiotherapist for nearly 2 years,he decides who goes forward for ops and talks to surgeon but dont think i will meet surgeon till day of operation, i know its not how it works in america,
    guess im pretty negative at mo, need to think of the long term pic
  • I had acdf c5/6, plate with 4 screws, level 2..had no idea what was going on or what to expect...
    Just trust in ur dr and have alot of faith everything will be okay..time is the healer...granny always told me "God will not give you more than you can handle"....will be thinking the best for you...Sending a hug and a prayer....
  • I just scheduled to have a L4/5 fusion on Oct 14th. I'm printing off the list of things to have around and things I need to prepare for. I haven't thought about pre-surgery anxiety just yet but I guess I should prepare for that as well. I'm trying to make a list of questions to email to my doctor's assistant about meds and stuff. I think he prescribes Hydrocodone for post surgery pain.I think I might need some Phinergin (sp?) for nausea (also it knocks me out, which would be good). I'm all ready on Lyrica (2per day)and Celebrex (2day), an anti-depressant and pills for cholesterol, hormones and thyroid. I hate taking all of these pills. I'm turning 48 next week and feel like I'm falling apart.

    Any advice on what are the best meds for post surgery is welcome.
  • Im going through this also, im going to see the Dr, October 23rd to make all the arragements, i have already had the MRI, and on Saturday, im going for the CT Scan, I have two herniated disk, and spondylolysis, at L5 and its also trapping my nerve, I also have (and i dont think its anything to do with it ) pain like a pulled muscel under my right shoulder blade,and when i use my right arm which is most of the time it hurts like hell. Seems like i cant do anything with my back and now my muscel, he gave me Ibuprophin 800mg, it dosnt do anything for me. any way i will see him next month hope to get through it until then.
  • So sorry you are headed to surgery! This year and last, I've had several surgeries (I'm held together with spit & baling wire I think) and each time, the hardest part was the time leading up to it. Do whatever you can to keep yourself calm, some good suggestions in here! And when it gets to be too much, stop in here, we're all here for you :)
  • Hi Shirley

    Try not to be too scared (that's easier said than done) and do ask them at the hospital for something to help you cope while you're waiting for your surgery date. It should help to take some of the stress away.

    Once you know your surgery date, then you'll be busy with the planning and preparing phase getting the things you're going to need for recovery and preparing and freezing meals. There's an excellent list at the top of this section.

    I'm waiting for an ALIF L4/5 on 12th October two days before Kirklandy.

    Trish













    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
  • Surgery can be scarry. I'm in the process of scheduling a 360 fusion. I have had a neck fusion and 2 total knee replacements, 2 carpal tunnel operations, lymph node biopsy so I know something about surgery. You have to have faith in your Dr's that they know what they are doing and what they are doing is to make your pain better. Tomorrow is always better than today because you are there. Some have no tomorrow! As one said- God doesn't put on us more than we can bear, but as most on this site have learned, it get's mighty close sometimes. We have to live by faith and not by sight. Trust in God that things will be better for you and trust in those who care for you that they have your best health in mind. Praying for you and may God Bless!
  • he answered all my questions which was great, he said surgeon does average of 15 fusions a year !!!!
    didn't sound very many to me ? but if anyone requires spinal surgery for cancer for example and it requires getting to the spine via the stomach he is the man to do it. he said docs come from australia and china to watch and learn from him so i guess he must be good.
    said i wont need to wear a brace ? reckons the pain will be terrible for up to 6 weeks then i will improve over next 6 months, but after that pain will be worse than first 6 weeks ?
    he told me i will definately not be pain free ever ?
    said its my choice, i can have it done or leave it but if i leave it too long and end up with other disc problems he wont touch me.
    he was pretty mad that im not at work, said no one needs to be off work because of back pain, thats what pain relief is for ? i sat there with my mouth open, couldn't think what to say.
    when i found my voice again and told him i just could not cope with work and pain he told me to get another job.
    more confused than ever now, really want to meet a person from my town who has gone through this
  • Shirley, what is he offering you for pain relief? Sounds like he's an excellent surgeon, though maybe a bit tough on folks in pain.

    Got my fingers crossed for you, keep us posted on how you're doing.
  • Your appt. appears to have thrown up a whole set of other questions. Fifteen fusions a year is not a lot, my surgeon does 2-3 per week. I really don't want to scare you because he could well be an excellent surgeon, with special techniques not commonly used elsewhere. I realise I'm sticking my neck out here but I think if it was me, I'd be looking for an opinion from a surgeon with more experience in the type of surgery you require. He might do a lot of other types of spinal surgery but 15 per year of this type, doesn't engender confidence in me.

    His bedside manner leaves a lot to be desired and wouldn't promote healing qualities for me either! Remember, good pain control = faster healing. Expecting you to work in severe pain is just plain uncaring. I really hope I'm not giving you more to worry about but this doctor makes me very wary.

    As for being scared, I think it's perfectly normal. I was given a valium-type drug and it helped enormously. I stopped it gradually after surgery.

    Best wishes Shirley, I hope you'll let us know how you get on.

    For those coming up for surgery, please speak to your doctors about whether you should drop the anti-inflammatories 2 weeks prior to fusion surgery. I was told this by my surgeon and have read that it inhibits fusion.
  • Shirley, I hate to say this, but this doctor really sounds unpleasant and strange. I already commented on another post about the advice he gave you as to the pain post-surgery...which I thought was a crazy comment...one I cannot imagine a doctor making -- Can you go to another town or area for surgery?

    I suspect you do need to have the surgery...I just don't like to think of you going to this guy.

    Blessings,
    Gwennie
  • for being here for me, i cant see another surgeon he is the only one where i live who does this surgery, i cant even go to another town as i have my grandson who is 5 living with me, all i think about is should i do it ? it keeps me awake at night and its running round my head all day. my back is killing me today to the point that i feel physically sick.
    my husband is great but says its my choice, he doesnt want to get the blame if i regret having it done.
    i start pain management next month, hopefully that will help ?
  • Hi Shirley

    Sorry your surgeon doesn't have a good bedside manner. If I recollect, in the UK with the National Health you don't have a choice of doctor??

    When the doctor said you wouldn't be totally pain free, he may have been referring to the osteoarthritis. If you decide to go ahead with surgery and with good pain management, hopefully you'll be able to get a big reduction in the pain so that you can enjoy life more.

    Trish














    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
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