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Posted by Jill D on October 30, 2000 at 12:13:29:

In Reply to: Question for Jill D. posted by Steve on October 30, 2000 at 11:19:38:

Hi Steve - I know you are probably getting anxious, and will probably come up with new questions every other day - that's what I did too! Regarding the blood - actually I asked my doc about that because I wanted to, but he said it wouldn't be necessary, and he was right. He has a reputation of being very good, and very fast, so blood loss was minimal. I did not need any blood, and did fine - didn't lose much at all according to my friend who was assisting during surgery. As for the bone graft - my surgeon used donor bone for a couple reasons - one being that it VERY much reduces post-op pain. Apparently many people suffer more pain from the bone graft site on their hip, than they do from the actual fusion surgery. I was very willing to avoid this pain. He assured me that the difference in success rates (rejection of the bone) was statistically insignificant. I just have to pray he's right! The other reason, I think, was that because I had a 2-level fusion, he would have needed to harvest more bone from my hip than normal, leading to even more pain.

You will be in my thoughts and prayers in the upcoming weeks. Here's a tip for you: before you have the surgery, go to a med. supply store (or something similar) and get yourself a "grabber" or "reach extender". This tool has been a lifesaver for me - with it I'm able to do all kinds of things I wouldn't otherwise be able to do - like dressing myself - which is fairly important to me! :) And you'll be amazed at how much you find you drop - you never notice how much stuff you drop until you can't bend over to pick it up! I use my grabber countless times each day.

If you come up with other questions (like I did!), feel free to ask. I feel blessed to have the opportunity to help someone else through their surgery.

Best wishes to you, Steve, and
God bless your day!

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