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9 days post op update

I will try to keep this brief. Please forgive any typos, as I am doing this on a tablet.
So, December 8, I had fusion at L5/S1. After surgery, they took AP & Lateral views of my spine, bedside. Having worked in the OR, I thought it was kind of odd, but I never worked with this Dr, so I thought maybe that was just his protocol. Well about an hour later, they send me for a CT. I knew something was up, but I just didn't know what. So later when he came to check on me, he told me I had a defect in my L5 on the right side that was basically a hole within the vertebral body which wouldn't allow him to place the screw the way he normally would. It's amazing how I've had so many MRIs & CTs, but sometimes they just don't show everything & docs get a surprise when they go in. Anyway, the reason for the post op x-Rays was because he wanted to make sure the screw wasn't protruding into the disc space. Since he still couldn't tell from the 2-view x-Ray, they sent me for the CT, which showed it was NOT in the disc space. If it had been, they would have rushed me right back to surgery. At least all of this explained why my right side of my back hurt so much more - because they had to make those adjustments during surgery.
So, they put me on a PCA of morphine for the first day & half the first night but they had to take it away because my blood pressure was dropping- like a typical reading was 86/44. At one point the top # was 52! So they had to switch a lot of my drugs up, & they're pushing large amounts of fluid into my IV to get the pressure up. Still nothing. The crazy part is that I was coherent & talking this entire time. My heart rate was in the 40s. They were ready to put me in ICU & get an echo gram of my heart & a PE chest to make sure I didn't throw a clot. But sometime overnight, everything started coming up (yay) so they took out my foley (which scared the fire out of me because now that meant I would have to get up every time I had to pee, which was a lot!) I was supposed to go home last Wednesday but of course they kept me longer because of all the other stuff that happened. And I was relieved because I did not feel ready to leave yet. I ended up getting released on Friday, & by then I was ready to go home.
So I'm doing pretty good, I'm getting around great with the walker & my goal is to be off of it by the middle of next week.
I'm only taking an anti inflammatory, zofran (for nausea, cuz I have weak stomach right now) & Valium, which is what they put me on when they had to take away the Robaxin (which was what had been tanking my BP) so the Valium is used as a muscle relaxer (I work in health care & never knew this - see you can always learn something new) & I'm supposed to take it 3 times a day but I only take it 2 times a day. They also said protein will help me heal faster so I've been having it with every meal (I'm normally a carb freak)
I've been getting around the house really well, my pain gets less every day -oh, but I've sneezed quite a few times & it's the worst ever! I feel like I'm gonna blow my back up it hurts so bad, and trying to stifle it makes it 10 times worse. But I'm able to get in & out of bed with no problems, turn over with no problems. My mattress is very firm & it makes a world of difference. The mushy hospital bed was so hard to get out of...I kept feeling like I was sinking back in all the time.
My nurses, PCTs, PT were all great. I had a great crew taking care of me.
So much for me keeping this brief, lol


  • For some reason this posted twice so if a mod wants to delete one, please feel free to do so. :)
  • As lot of other surgeries, yours also had some surprises, despite all the preop xrays and CTs, the surgeon is hit with reality
    when he gets inside your body. But despite of the slight setback, you seem to be doing well and right on target. Keep up the good work!
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  • Thank you kinpain! A week ago I was regretting my choice so bad, but it's amazing how much better I feel now. What a difference a week makes, or even a few days.
    All of my hip pain is gone, no burning in my butt area, no tingling down my leg & into my foot...it's amazing. Right now my incision is itching like crazy, but I'll take that trade!
    My PT starts tomorrow, & I'm looking forward to it. Ready to be done with the walker! :) (as soon as they clear me, of course!)
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