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New to the site

pitbullmamappitbullmama Posts: 8
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:56 AM in New Member Introductions
Hello all,
Im new to the site. Been exploring a bit to see how all of this works. 8} I found out Monday that I will be having an ACDF on October 10th. So far this site has been helpful with giving tips on pre and post op info. My questions are more for my husband and children. If anyone has any suggestions on how to talk to my youngest son (he is 11) and put his mind at ease it would be greatly appreciated. He has so many questions about what he should be expecting afterwards and I have no answers. Also if anyone has any suggestions comming from a caregivers point of view that would be great as well. I know my husband will be right here for me but I also know that sometimes its much harder on them than it is the patient. Afterall, were the ones with the good drugs right? =))


  • hi and welcome to the forum! we are here to offer you support and answer what questions we can. so by now you know your way around the forum and have made yourself at home! i am glad you have found some of your questions to be answered for you!! good luck on your upcoming surgery and all the best for a rapid and healthy recovery!! this is your chance to become pain free! please be sure to follow your doctor's orders during your recovery! be sure and stop by the forum as well. it can make a long day go by alot faster.. i am sure some spineys will drop by with some suggestions for you about your son.. he is at such a sweet age! i am dealing with a four year old little girl so i am at a loss to help you!! LOL!! you are so lucky to have your husband there to support you!!! good luck! Jenny :)
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
    You are right...it can be very difficult for the family.
    First with children..11 is old enough to talk with.. re what is happening and what to expect. Whatever doc tells you, you change it for his level.

    The technical areas of your condition won't easily be understand, but he may be interested.:) But mostly if kids are included and reassured that whatever happens or doesn't happen..it's not their fault.

    Kids think that about everything...if I behaved better..she wouldn't have gotten upset and had to lie on the bed for 3 hours. Or to tell child before it happens...If I get irritated or upset..it's not you but I am going through stages of getting better..need to lie down more...or something like that.

    Re' husbands or other caregivers...I believe they need to be given the freedom to talk with their friends about how your painful situation has effected his life. Talking with you is great..but not wanting you to feel quilt because you didn't ask to be impaired...he may welcome permission to do what he needs to to take care of himself, also.

    Maybe leting a mom or friend stay with you a day and letting your family go out and do things without guilt of leaving you alone.

    Even having you ask the question shows what a good parent you are. I wish you and the family the best Please keep in touch
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • Just wanted to wish you all the best for your surgery. Make sure you have everything in your drawers closet at eye level so you won't be bending or reaching for anything. Check out post op must haves you need like bendy straws and soft foods to eat afterwards. Tell your son Mom will need a lot of help but hope you have another family member helping for a few days during the day if your husband is at work. Check out October surgery post and add your name. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Welcome to Spine-Health. You'll find a lot of information on this site regarding what goes on with and ACDF and the members of the forum are all very friendly, knowledgeable and supportive.

    First, I'd like to say that recovery from ACDF, although difficult and takes time, is not as bad as lumbar surgery. I only needed full-time help for a couple of weeks before I could do some things for myself. I still needed help with lifting and such for three or four months, but I could cook, do the folding, etc., things that weren't too taxing. Of course, I was in a hard collar for four weeks and a soft collar for six after that, so that made a difference - when you're in a hard collar, you really are limited.

    I don't know if I'd tell an 11-year-old the details of what the operation entails. When you think about how they go through the front of the neck, move everything aside to get to the back of your neck, intubate you, etc., it can sound quite daunting and scary. My husband still shudders when he thinks about what they had to do. Of course, in reality, it's not as bad as it sounds, but putting that picture into your little one's head might give him nightmares and scare him.

    With that said, you can put a positive spin on that part by playing it down and not going into details, but then tell them both that you'll have restrictions such as no BLT (bending, lifting, twisting) for a while, will need help with cooking and such, as you won't be able to do much at all the first few weeks and will also be on meds that will make you sleepy - a good thing to help with your recovery. You'll need to walk after surgery for short distances then working up to longer distances as you can to help your healing. This might be a good thing to bring up to your youngun - walking with you to help you heal, he may feel he's helping mom by going with you on your walks.

    You don't mention if you'll have a brace or not, but that can make a difference visually to your recovery. If you have a brace, it's apparent that you're going through recovery whereas if you don't have one, it may seem like it's all been a piece of cake, which of course, is wrong.

    I'd say that lifting is the one thing that will be the most limiting after an ACDF. No laundry, no vacuuming or sweeping, basically no housework at all. You shouldn't even lift a cooking pan.

    The main thing is that it does't last forever. You'll get your restrictions lessened and will be able to do more as time goes by. But one thing most of us have had problems with is feeling good after a few weeks and doing things we shouldn't because we feel we can. Then it sets you back a few days and you feel like you've done more than you should have.

    Try to measure your recovery in weeks, not days, as it takes more time than some imagine. Spine surgery is serious and you must take the recovery seriously because you have to fuse to have a successful surgery. Doing too much too soon can be problematic to fusion.

    Nobody can give you a definitive timeframe for recovery, it's really going to be between you and your surgeon. But you'll start feeling better, be able to do more and you're family will be able to see that change. I think taking your hubby to your surgeon appointments afterwards might be a good thing so he has an idea what to expect until the next appointment.

    Anyway, sorry for the long post. I'm just trying to give you some of the information you've asked for and share with you my experience.

    Good luck on your surgery and I hope you continue to post with any questions you have or just to vent. Feel free to PM me if there's anything I can help you with.

    Take care,
  • Hi, I am not a "neckie". I have lumbar issues. I had to pop in and say hi and ask about your username. I love pitties!
  • I have lumbar issues too but I'm trying to pace myself. My username is my job......full time mama to pit bulls......I've raised them for many many years. Right now my oldest is 2 and 1/2 black nose brindle and my baby is 5 months old he is white with some brown spots very very mouthy and trained completley in Russian.......Jr is a full time job himself. Right now we are watching the Falcons/Eagles game......our cheering for Vick to get hurt finally worked.....altho he may now be a member of tis forum the way his neck was snapped.......cudnt have happened to a better person
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