Hello everyone ! This is my first post. Some background on me. I am a 30 year old woman no children unless you count my dog. I am a licensed massage therapist in the state of NY. As a teenager (says surgeon) I apparently clean cracked off both transverse processes on either side of my L5. He tried asking me what I had done to myself but hand to god, I've got no idea. He said it's common and probably didnt cause me any pain until my car accident. I have a case in process so can't disclose TMI but I was rear ended at 40 mph at a dead stop unexpectedly in to the back of the car in front of me. The accident forced a severe herniation 7mm into the spinal canal foraminal stenosis, and 5 herniation all very mild,in my neck that thank Jesus have healed. Anyone in a car accident know's that nothing appears for a few days. I started to get Charlie horses, bolts of pain from my butt crack (sorry) across my low back and hips then paralell to my legs down to my ankles that caused jumping legs and explosions of pain across my feet and toes, limping and pain that kept me from doing anything in one position for longer then a 30 minute window. As a deep tissue, sports, and orthopaedic massage therapist, I couldn't afford the pain. Well I started the meat packing cow processing back and forth with MDs. First stop Chiro 3 times a week for three months. Left in more pain towards the later half of the second month and awful headaches. Dr 2 my Angel, ordered xray and MRI and an EMG. He is my ortho surgeon. He referred me to pain mgmt. Tried him and as usual get put on the loratab and Aleve. Aleve kills my stomach sadly. We did an epidural injection that was fantastic for only 5 days. I couldn't take it anymore so I dropped chiro. Met with the insurance chiro and the insurance ortho doc that both agreed I needed help. Amazing right ? Started PT had about 6 sessions. I was "alright" after but the minute I woke up in the morning I felt like I had a boulder in between my backside cheeks just a knot of pain and pressure that would zap me with a strength of a cattle prod trying to bend or twist. Well as of 3 days ago surgeon said continue with PT but that it's time to operate. Being 30 it blows because I don't want to be on pain pills for the rest of my life at some point they just don't work. Massage makes me lock up like fort,Knox even gentle. I am not over exaggerating when I tell you I will sit in a hot hot bath for over 2 hours just to get relief minimally for the pain. I can't drive on days I took the pill and scarily enough I've had my leg go numb and trying to stop my car was like a kick in the pants pushing down on the break. I care about others and myself to much to put anyone at risk of me driving on,these pills.
Anyway, the procedure we discussed is an ALIF PLIF with cage and fusion and a laminectomy of L5 fusing,it to my sanctum. He said usually he does the procedure over a course of 4 days front,first but because of my age and,good health he will do them,on the same day. My surgeon is even letting me,bring my parents free of charge so they can have there questions answered. In the space between once the disk is removed he is putting a stem cell bone grow in to help the fusion.
So yes I'm to scared to poop my pants over this, but I've been trying to maintain a better then ever position seeing as if I've had spondy for half my life. I will be what I was always supposed to be and won't have to worry as much about a fender bender causing me paralyzation. I have quite the swagger limp that baby's my left almost like I'm inches shorter on my L then my R.
I want to know how to stay positive from folks that will have or have had any surgery like this. What got you through from movies to food to mood, books, anything. I try to not complain because I don't want to lose the support from,them,becoming annoyed. I know they wouldn't leave me but still how do I support them. My boyfriend says it's just scars after surgery and is supportive but we don't talk much about it. My mother is being a mother and my dad has had back surgery.
I know I will need the raised toilet seat and the walker, but if you can recommend anything to help it would be fantastic. The anterior approach starts with a C section scar but I don't have children so I don't know what pain that will be. I've read some people swear by holding a pillow to cough or laugh. What about what to wear to stay away from my pubic line or what you have used to avoid irritation to that area at all. Ice packs ? Heating pad ? What about a grabber or a sock helper ? Embarassing as this is ...what helped you clean up after moving your bowels or urinating? Wet wipes for sure. I've seen the tongs to help but that won't make me feel So clean. How did you shower ? How did you travel in a car ? I know it will,be time before I can drive myself. Stool softener ? Drink tons of water ? The only surgery I've had were a,D &C an my gallbladder out but that was lapro. How do you pace yourself walking ? Videos you suggest on YouTube ...
Like I said any wild big small tiny or just helped you tip you can offer will be taken in to consideration. I'm sorry this is so long but I'm trying to find someone to identify with who been or is going through this as a support buddy. We could rely on each other. My next appointment is 12/18 then we schedule surgery then. Just trying to get a jump on things before hand. Thank you immensely for taking the time,to read this. Also any questions you recommend asking the DR at my next appointment that you felt would have helped you to know the answer to,before surgery.