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Advice needed

AlistairAAlistair Posts: 37
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:56 AM in Recovering from Surgery
My wife was helping me shower this morning and noticed that there was a red ring around the water proof dressing over the wound. I am also starting to notice a small increase in swelling in the area of surgery (T11/T12). I am 6 days post surgery. We have marked the redness with a permanent marker to keep an eye on that incase it's spreading.

My question is do I go to see the specialist that did the surgery or do I just go to my family doctor if things start getting worse?


  • I would say to followup with your surgeon if this becomes a problem. Do you have a followup appointment already scheduled for stitches/staples removal?
    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
  • No I don't see the nurse for another 10 days and the stitches are dissolving so no need to take them out...
    I was just freaking myself out as a family member said it could be something that I don't even want to think about!!
    Will make an appointment tomorrow to see the surgeon.

  • keep an eye on your temperature too.

    I hope that this will be nothing serious and just a blip along the way. :-)

  • I would definitely give a call and ask for a call back especially if the area is warmer than the surrounding area. Redness and swelling may be a sign of infection. For peace of mind, I would want to be seen in the next few days. Keep us posted.

    12/9/2010 ACDF C5-6 C6-7 with plate, screws,
    BMP & bone fragment filled cages
    2/14/2011 trying to go back to work as a teacher
    2/17/2011 starting PT
    wearing bone stimulator 4 hours a day
    DDD, arthritis, herniated disks, pinched nerves
    3 months saw a little bit of bone growth (YEAH)
    4/15/2011 Home Tens Unit
    6 months - end plate growth going well - no more bone stimulator, issues with hands going to vascular and hand surgeons to find out why
    8/2011 - may have TOS or RSD still researching
    9/2/2011 Rear ended at 30 mph. Think I am okay going to OSS on Tue or Wed. School begins Tues.

    Dealt with the pain and issues for more than 5 years
    tried PT, chiropractic, acupuncture, cervical epidural shots and selective nerve root blocks prior to surgery
  • I managed to get to see the specialist and I had developed a minor infection around the area I was operated on. With a course of antibiotics and an injection into the area I'm now feeling alot better!!! Thanks for the advice guys it could've been alot worse!!!!
  • good to hear from you again, and that you are back on track in your recovery now.

    I got a wound injection after my fusion, which was where part of my incision wasn't drawn together and closed properly. I only had to take oral antibiotics. It then started forming over-granulation tissue and had to be cauterised with silver nitrate. It did heal up, but took til 6 weeks until I could take the dressing off.
    Now my scar looks fine, although it does have a wider bit where the infection was.
  • Hi Everyone!

    I am 11 days out from my surgery. About 4 days ago I started getting this severe jolt of pain with going from a sitting to standing or laying down to sitting position. It's as if when I get to that perfect position it locks up and hits a nerve firing pain outward, not down my leg. It catches your breath and at times makes you feel as though you could fall. When I wake up in the morning it takes me nearly a half hour to get up the courage to try and get out of bed due to the fear of this pain. My doctor told me that I was doing too much too soon and to rest for 2 days. I spent the past two days in bed and the pain is still there, quite severe. At rest pain is manageable. Has anyone else experienced this? Does it get better? Should I be more persistent with my doctor and insist on being seen?

    Thank you for listening! Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  • I found the same thing Lindsey. I'm 2 weeks and one day post surgery. I did notice a huge spike in pain around a week after surgery as I think this is about the point that the more aggressive pain killers and anesthetics start wearing off.
    Sometime in the process of sitting to stand or visa versa I get a pain so intense that it takes my breathe away like I've been stabbed with a knife or something. It's at this point that I tell myself to slow down.

    We have had massive surgery and it's a long road to recovery unfortunately and if you do try to do more than what your ready for you will only be doing yourself alot more harm than good. I know how frustrating it is. Today is the opening of the trout fishing season in New Zealand where all the back country streams open after being closed for the winter to allow the trout to breed. All of my friends are out fishing and I'm stuck at home watching fishing videos on YouTube. It really sucks but next year will be even better for my time out.

    Moral of the story? Just chill out relax take your time and enjoy having some time off work. :-)
  • Thank you for the reassurance. I've been so nervous that something was seriously wrong. When I spoke to my doctor he talked to me like I was an idiot so I am hesitant to call them. I'll just wait it out.

    How much are you walking in a day at this point?

  • I'm not walking too much as where we live is very hilly. But we have two flights of stairs in our house and I try to do at least 15 trips up an down each day. I'm still very tender especially around where the surgeon took the bone graft from my hip.

    If you aren't comfortable with your doctor you may need to look at finding a new family doctor. But just remember that there will be pain associated with the surgery, and often if it's really bad pain then it means your doing something that your are not ready to do yet. Well that's what I was told anyways.

    If it hurts stop doing it. I was also told not to lift anything heavier than a jug of water for at least a month - 6 weeks. Im going crazy at home as I was a very active person before my surgery. I've never been out of action for so long (apart from when I had my accident) and I'm just not used to taking it easy which I think is the hardest part.
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