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Travel overseas soon after permanent implant is in?

I am in the process of trying the scs for my cervical spine, and yesterday I talked with my Boston Sco rep sbout the approximate time plan from start until permanent implant is in. She said that the longest hold up is usually the insurance approval but once that's out of the way, it moves pretty quick between trial and permanent one. I have a 4 week trip to Europe planned in the end of July and it involves an 8 hour flight round trip.
If things move along my permanent implant might be a couple of weeks before this trip and Im thinking it is better to push up the trip for the fall/winter? Is it reasonable to think I can fly for 8 hours and be fairly active on my trip (no sports but be on the move for 4 weeks) a few weeks after the scs goes in?

Thanks.
Victoria
Cause: car accident & genetics
Effect: herniations C4-7, stenosis, osteoarthritis, myelopathy, neuropathy
Non-invasive Treatment: everything under the sun
Invasive Treatment: 2 level ACDF, C5 & C6, May 2012
Moving Forward: SCS
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1

Comments

  • I do not have one of these implants, and I'm not trying to be a know it all or anything... here are my thoughts...
    I thought you only qualified for these implants as a "last resort" almost... so I'd assume you've been dealing with severe chronic pain for years... in which case I'd ask... Could you leave now (before this implant) and be "on the move" for 4 straight weeks? If you could do that right now I'd be surprised simply because most people with severe chronic pain can not. If you can though, I'd keep my trip. If you couldn't do it today with your back "As Is" I'd postpone my trip. I've heard people have amazing and fast results from the permanent implants and I genuinely hope you do too. However, even if you were to wake up in no pain, you would still need some time to build back up muscle strength and endurance. I want you to have a wonderful trip, so think about it. Hopefully some people that do have experience with these implants can give you a better answer.
    33yo mom of two. My surgical history...preadolescence scoliosis, kyphosis, and a hot mess.... 5 spine surgeries and lots of items added I wasn't born with (titanium, peek, surgical steel). Guess cremation is out. TSA loves me.
  • Based upon my personal experience, I would not plan anything for at least four weeks after your surgery.

    I wasnt even able to be up out of bed for more than three hours when I was two weeks out. I have my recheck today, and hope to get the okay to return to work and I am exactly four weeks post op.
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  • Ms PixieMMs Pixie Posts: 154
    edited 05/09/2013 - 4:27 AM
    for valuable input.
    My gut feeling is telling me to postpone until earliest winter, and although it will break my mom's and 95 year old grandma's heart (havent seen them in 2 years), I have to set that aside and focus on my own well being. On my last trip home 2 years ago I spent most of my time in bed, on meds, and just the flights were a nightmare to get over. Last year I had my fusion to recover from and couldnt travel at all. I guess I just need to hear what I already kinda understand, but it sadens me that I cant see my family when I had hoped this would be the year. Sure my family can travel here instead, but grandma is too frail.

    Thanks again.

    Cause: car accident & genetics
    Effect: herniations C4-7, stenosis, osteoarthritis, myelopathy, neuropathy
    Non-invasive Treatment: everything under the sun
    Invasive Treatment: 2 level ACDF, C5 & C6, May 2012
    Moving Forward: SCS
  • The issue of your grandmother does complicate things. I know you are devastated to have to put off seeing her first for the fusion and now again for health issues. I was very very close to my grandparents. Everyday with them is a blessing, and with her age, I know you feel like time is "short". Just remember quality time is much better than quantity. Praying you heal quickly and are able to see her again very soon(and when you are feeling great).
    33yo mom of two. My surgical history...preadolescence scoliosis, kyphosis, and a hot mess.... 5 spine surgeries and lots of items added I wasn't born with (titanium, peek, surgical steel). Guess cremation is out. TSA loves me.
  • Ms PixieMMs Pixie Posts: 154
    edited 05/09/2013 - 4:56 PM
    It always happen like that, you make plans and life comes in between. My fusion recovery this last year has been rocky and although fully fused now and so greatful over that, the surgery didnt manage to correct my radiculopathy, as we had hoped. Since we put traveling to the family reunion off last year due to surgery, we hoped this year would be it. Now I have the pain management team working to get the SCS thing happen as soon as possible and my work place waiting to have me back asap as well.
    As much as I am willing to set myself aside and travel to my family regardless of getting the SCS right before (oh, I can be stupid like that if it makes other happy), I have to realize its not a good thing, and hopefully I can go see everyone in winter instead... Any other trip I would not think of planning it now or pushing it, but the SCS happening this summer was kind off quick and unexpected and I feel like I am letting everyone down by having surgery so soon again and not being there to see them as I have promised... Still Im sure no one in my family would want me to go there in pain and mess up the results.
    Cause: car accident & genetics
    Effect: herniations C4-7, stenosis, osteoarthritis, myelopathy, neuropathy
    Non-invasive Treatment: everything under the sun
    Invasive Treatment: 2 level ACDF, C5 & C6, May 2012
    Moving Forward: SCS
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  • RickilalasRRickilalas Posts: 558
    edited 05/10/2013 - 9:57 PM
    MsPixie
    That would be a really tight time frame. I think I would try to do the trip before the implant.
    Infection is the worst part of a implant though very rare it does happen see MelWs thread.
    If you were to be overseas and something was to happen my guess is it would be hard to get medical care. Surgeons do not like to work on another patient. I am sure if it was life threatening they may but they may say not. If the implant was done before your trip I would suggest four to six weeks minimum before going that far. Ask your surgeon his thoughts. And ask if blood clots could be a issue flying so soon. For that long of a flight. I do not know what surgeries you have had but if they do a paddle the recovery will be longer then perc leads.
    Wish you well and I hope you make the trip
    Rick
  • Yeah I have decided to put up the trip until the winter. Since the trial can happen any time soon Im gonna roll with this now and don't stress about squeezing in the family trip and potentially mess up the results. My family want the best for me so I know they will understand.
    Cause: car accident & genetics
    Effect: herniations C4-7, stenosis, osteoarthritis, myelopathy, neuropathy
    Non-invasive Treatment: everything under the sun
    Invasive Treatment: 2 level ACDF, C5 & C6, May 2012
    Moving Forward: SCS
  • Ms Pixie
    I hate to see you change a trip but its a good choice in my mind depending on how your implant would go. If they implant with a paddle and laminectomys its a hard surgery to get over and like I said above it adds risk,. Travel after it has healed is not a problem.
    Plus if the implant is in and working well the trip will be that much better pain wise.

    Good Luck.
  • Ms PixieMMs Pixie Posts: 154
    edited 06/03/2013 - 4:06 PM
    Yes, we have definitely put the trip up for later in the year now. I am not well to travel as it is now and want to focus my all on getting the scs done and healing well.
    The paperwork and letter of medical necessity is filed with Cigna now and on Wed Im meeting with my BS rep. I asked doc if they only worked with BS (thanks Rick!) but he said all 3 and I can choose whichever one I want. I asked why BS and he thought that it might be a good fit for me. Maybe good incentives but heck, I dont have any idea of whatever is better so Im gonna trust my doc that Ive had for 4 years and never done me wrong.
    Getting a little nervous the closer it gets and wonder about placement for the unit. Oh well. Most scared that it wont help since, like many of us here, "Ive been there, done that" when it comes to most spine treatments now.
    Going in for a 4 level ablasion on Wednesday for my cervical facet joints. I'll be darned if not the combination of all these things should give some relief now!

    Vic
    Cause: car accident & genetics
    Effect: herniations C4-7, stenosis, osteoarthritis, myelopathy, neuropathy
    Non-invasive Treatment: everything under the sun
    Invasive Treatment: 2 level ACDF, C5 & C6, May 2012
    Moving Forward: SCS
  • RickilalasRRickilalas Posts: 558
    edited 06/03/2013 - 9:11 PM
    Vic
    I hope it works ot for you.
    Its really odd on how they feel which one would help us the most.
    I am having trouble with coverage in my left ankle. With a insurance change my PM wants to shut down my medtronics and try a BS trial. It might be worth it just to compare them has I don't know anyone that's done this. They are working on if I could use both units at the same time because I do not want to give up the coverage I have for a what if chance and then start all over.
    I believe they are about the same with some small changes to avoid copyright infringement and patent
    Laws. We have been told on the forum BS charges $1200 for a remote control replacement where medtronics doesn't charge anything.

    Rick
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