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ACDF Surgery the 8th!

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:19 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Well, the countdown has started. My surgery is in 2 days and I'm freaking out a little bit!! I keep hearing the waiting is the hardest part and I'm sure that's true. It's amazing what my imagination can come up with!

I'm also trying really hard to quit smoking. Does anyone know if cutting WAY down is better than nothing? I don't want to continue to beat myself up about it, if I don't have to. I've gone from 1-1.5 packs a day to 1-2 cigs a day. I feel like that is an accomplishment. I'm trying really hard to have zero, but fear is a tough competitor. I know after the surgery I won't be smoking at all and I'm staying smoke free for good.

Just really freaking out, I guess. Thanks for letting me vent!



  • I would say that cutting down that much has to help, but I'm glad you are planning to totally kick the habit after surgery! It's perfectly normal to be nervous before surgery. Just do what you can to prepare youself and your house for post-op availability; food, books, movies, plates and glasses you can easily reach. Best of luck to you and keep breathing!

  • Hey Lynne, my surgeon wouldn't perform my surgery until he knew I quit smoking. I had cut WAY back months ago anyway in preparation to totally quit but with scheduling this surgery, I knew I had to be smoke free.

    If it's any help, I did sneak one about 2 weeks ago and it's amazing how you really don't want one after that.

    Oh and today my doctor just wanted to reiterate that healing will be much faster without nicotine in our bodies. ;) ;)

    Just think how much better we're going to feel after the surgery and be smoke free!!!

    Best of luck tomorrow.
  • I have had a few the last few days, like I said 1-2 a day. I know it's not good, but I'm really freaking out. I will not be having any past 10pm tonight (at the absolute latest) or tomorrow at all! I also will not be having ANY post surgery. Hopefully, that is better than those who continue to smoke the whole time, it's sadly the best I can do.

    My surgery is going to be at 11:40am, so hopefully I'll be all done by 1:00pm and in my room shortly thereafter for a juice and ice cream party!!!

    Anyone have suggestions for much needed hospital items? I think I've covered all the bases on what to take, but I'm not sure I've gotten everything.

    Thank you so much Jeff for all your good thoughts! You'll be in mine on Wednesday!! Do you know what time your surgery is yet?

    We are going to feel GREAT!! I just know it!

  • Hi Lynne, my surgery is set for around 7:30 a.m. Wednesday. I have to be at the hospital at 6 a.m. Early day...LOL.

    I'll be thinking of you tomorrow!!
  • Hi Lynne,
    cutting back is great! See how surgery helps in ways we can't event imagine!! Good for you at cutting back so much and yes every cigarette less is great. I used to smoke and now work for the American Lung Association, go figure...

    And yes there is nothing worse than just waiting for surgery, especially if you haven't had surgery before. Our imaginations are far worse than reality always...breathe deep, continue to trust yourself and do what is best for you. You are the only one who can fully know what is best. I have surgery on the 10th, my 18th in the past two years and my imagination still takes advantage of me. Yet I know that bike riding is the best thing for me even though it hurts and is crazy...so I will ride...and you may smoke one or two...life goes on...
    You are not alone in all of this...I hope you can sleep tonight.

  • Hi Lynne,

    You should be very proud of yourself for cutting back so much on your smoking, especially at this stressful time just before surgery. Your plan to quit once the surgery is over sounds like a winner, too! I'm pretty sure that everyone feels anxious before surgery, and you just have to get through it. I know I was freaking out before my ACDF in January, but the surgery went perfectly and I was at home 24 hours later and have had absolutely no regrets since.

    As far as what to take to the hospital, I remember packing a bag with a nightgown, robe, toiletries, etc., and the only things I used were my robe, chap stick and hand lotion. The hospital furnished everything else that I needed for the 24 hours I was there.

    I hope you are able to get some rest between now and your surgery day and that your surgery and recovery go smoothly.

  • My surgery is scheduled for July 17. Two level acdf C5-6 and C6-7. My NS is using a device called a TM-100 for the disc instead of a bone graft and will have plate and screws. Unfortunetly, no one has heard of this type of surgery so makes me even more scared. The smoking is a real problem as I really enjoy to smoke. My whole house smokes as does everyone at work. Going to be a real problem but I want the best after surgery for the fusion to work. I trust my NS and have read up a lot on the device being used and it seems great with lots of success. They will use some of my bone marrow to fill the disc which is suppose to make everything fuse faster. She said I will be back to work after 8 weeks in a line of work that is very vigerous. We will see. I guess I just will make a date with the non smoking and hope all goes well for me. I hope all goes well for you and your surgery and keep us all posted. Good luck and prayers are with you. Maryann
  • Please don't beat up on yourself! You have done great to cut down that much. I had ACDF surgery last summer. I quit smoking 6 weeks before the surgery, with the help of Chantix. But my insurance wouldn't pay for it, and at $145.00 a month, I could only afford two months. For me, that wasn't enough. I went back to smoking. Baaaadd Me. Now I'm facing another surgery on August 13th, and have to quit smoking again. I sure wish I had stayed quit last summer! If you have cut down that much, you should be good to go for your surgery, and by staying quit, have a good outlook for fusion. Best wishes to you, and fast healing. PS I took a tank top with me to hospital to wear home. It was easy to put on and had a built in bra. Pull on pants too. You won't be able to bend much. Movies to watch, music to listen to. I found it hard to hold a book up long enough to read, unless propped on pillows.

    Hugs & Prayers
  • Thank you so much for all the wonderful thoughts everyone!! It means so much and really makes me feel much better!! I'll be leaving for the hospital in about an hour, and strangely I am feeling really calm right now. Yesterday I was a basket case. Go figure.

    I'll post as soon as I can tomorrow, but I know everything is going to go well!!

    Talk to you all soon.

  • Lynne, you're doing great on the quitting smoking! I'm not a smoker personally but several in my family have and are and I've been there when they've tried cutting back and finally quitting. You'll feel so much better and you'll heal so much faster.

    Tomorrow's three weeks for me post ACDF two levels, and all is well. I'm getting sick of wearing this collar and actually worked a few hours in front of the computer yesterday and was fine for the most part. Could feel my muscles starting to spasm so took some Flexeril and a break and was fine. Still so glad I had the surgery and am getting stronger and better every day.

    Let us know how you're doing when you can.

  • I do know that I have read and read to I am blue in the face and smoking and fusion DO NOT go well together. You really need to get the nicotine out of the system and quit. I have read too many horror stories. I am a somewhat social smoker - had a cig about 5 days ago and I have surgery in 3 days. My neck is unstable (no real pain) and they want to do ACDF on c4-c5 and I am freaking out. It was a chaotic day on Friday running here and there and although I am goin gto UCLA top neuro guy, I have read so many horror stories about fusion and this whole ACDF. I am a veyr active, just married 35 yo girl looking to get prego soon and this is nuts. I dont know why cadever over hip, this plate over that plate, this procedure over that procedure...no voice for 3 weeks or a hoarse one at that - what is going on - can anyone share a good story?
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