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  • What does 'Pre Testing' for fusion surgery entail?

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    Old 09-23-2003, 10:26 AM   #31
    MarianJ
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    Hello Everyone,

    Well, I went to my 10:00 appointment but I was 4 1/2 hours early. I felt like a complete idiot. So I will be leaving again in about an hour.

    I just wanted to comment on the ESI's and I had three of them. I also had a pain specialist perform the epidurals on me just like Sean. I was so scared with the first as I hate needles like most people. I felt a pinch when the first inserted the numbing agent. But I felt a lot of pressure when they put the steroid in and it hurt but not that bad. So when scheduled for the second one I was no longer worried. After they finished putting the steroid in, my chest got real heavy and they had to lie me down as I was ready to faint. My doctor told me this sometimes happens but more commonly in men. My blood pressure also dropped. I had to stay their an hour after that one. The third I was extremely frightened after what previously happened but it went fine and didn't hurt. I should have stopped after not getting any pain relief from the second, but I wanted my pain to go away. I ended up in worse pain as each one put me down for a couple of days and after the last, the pain stayed. But after reading my enormous amount of posts, most of you must think I have some real rotten luck. I just think I have an omen hanging over me. I must have done something pretty bad in my previous lifetime....lol

    Oh Sean, I just wanted to tell you that I had tried to submit my blood donation bill to my insurance company but they said they don't cover it. Also the blood donation center did not accept insurance and they only accepted cash not even a check.
    I keep checking the boards and still haven't heard anything on Sharon. Did you or anyone ask her to have a family member of friend post on her behalf?

    Take Care.

     
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    Old 09-23-2003, 10:35 AM   #32
    shg
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    Tomorrow,

    That is so weird. When I looking into the operation and the different hospitals, they all had this through their bloodbank and through the surgeon. Soes your surgeon suggest putting blood away and if so, where do they say to do it? At the hospital the procedure will be done or somewhere else? What was the reason the insurance company gave?

    I'm sorry you're having this problem.

    SHG

     
    Old 09-23-2003, 02:49 PM   #33
    Brooke79
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    Hi Tommorrow,

    How are you? So much action goes on while im in bed asleep hehe.

    Long Island, Wow!!! Excuse me but I've only seen it in movies too - Sabrina to be exact. Wow, how beatiful! Yep, people just dont know hoe to preserve a place do they. They just see $$$ value and go nuts! A shame that is.

    I am outraged at your hospital experience!!! Firstly, isn't it a good thing if you're not taking as much meds? To wake up and see the nurses doing it, but to then say what a waste of meds, that is really strange. And to not answer your call, for gods sake its not like you've got a broken arm is it? It's your back. Thats ridiculous.
    You're right there are bad days but yep the last thing pateints need is that kind of treatment especially when they are not feeling the best anyway.

    [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/heart.gif[/img] Brooke
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    October 2003 PLIF for L5S1 Spondy
    May 2004 PLIF revision RHBMP2

     
    Old 09-23-2003, 02:58 PM   #34
    Brooke79
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    Hi Sean
    How are you doing today good sir? How's the walking going? Are you increasing your distance each day? Do you have your girlfriend walk with you, or can you walk alone? I guess I mean are you confident enough to walk alone?

    Nup I'm only having a PLIF. For blood donations over here it costs $200 per bag, they said three is optimal. I'm sure you get a bit back on health care but our health care system is ery tight and they dont pay on much these days. Its a shame because after all itsyour money in the health care fund so its not like your asking for something thats not yours anyway. Ahh well.
    Wow! 1 block from UN now I'm thoroughly jealous. That's so cool. you must have a real nice NY location then? I used to be a law student so that kind of thing still fascinates me.

    I know, I reckon I'd love NY. Who knows I probably would stay too. I want to work in rehab with people who have had accidents etc.. and that kind of job is never limited to any one location or anything like that. Hmm, dreams.

    You seem to be a very strong, no nonsence person when it comes to dealing with your situation and that is really great. I on the other hand, whilst having a positive attitude and very nervous when it comes to pain. I have to have an anethsetic patch before having needles and I have to be lying down with my eyes closed. Drama Queen I am.

    Have a good day Sean,

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    Brooke
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    May 2004 PLIF revision RHBMP2

     
    Old 09-23-2003, 03:01 PM   #35
    Brooke79
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    Dear Camelia,

    Hello my dear, How are you today?

    Hehe I know, some people say I should be a teacher because I have a way of explaining things. I do it mainly because I know how I would feel if I didnt understand something, i love detail (as you can probably tell hehe).
    I'm studying exercise science and so have managed to put all my anatomical knowledge together with what I have learnt from my own condition and what do you get...a huge responce to questions. I love to talk, what can I say.

    I think Im a lot happier these last few days, my headaches have eased up and i am back into a good exercise routine. So when i am active i am happy.

    Enjoy your day Camelia

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    Brooke
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    May 2004 PLIF revision RHBMP2

     
    Old 09-23-2003, 03:04 PM   #36
    Brooke79
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    Tommorrow,

    How did your appointment go?
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    Old 09-23-2003, 03:36 PM   #37
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    Hello Shg,

    My surgeon said that he prefers all his patients to do this prior to surgery. He only had me donate one unit because I was having infuse and that shortened my surgery time. My surgeon's office sent me to a Blood Donation Center. They also have walk in's for donations, but when you are donating for yourself and for your surgery an appointment is needed. This center works with all the hospitals in my county. My insurance company said that they do not cover the donation cost. It made absolutely no sense to me because they would have been charged so much more if I did not donate and a transfusion was needed.

    Well, dinner is done gotta go, (I was going to say gotta run but that's impossible.)

     
    Old 09-23-2003, 05:31 PM   #38
    MarianJ
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    Hello Brooke,

    I went to my appointment for the second time..lol I saw the cardiologist and they did another EKG. I was so mad as I had to get up on that table and off. I really like to be independent, therefore If someone has to help me, it makes me scream inside. I got on the table but could not get up to a sitting position and I had to ask the nurse for help. Anyway the test came back normal and so did the Echo. I don't even have a heart murmur anymore. The cardiologist said that I have a very strong heart. He also is concerned about my feet and legs. He said that I have a very bad case of edema. He also gave me a script for Compression Stockings. I also saw my primary doctor and he said that come back in a week so he can check if the swelling has gone down. If not he is sending my to yet another specialist and I forgot the name, but something to do with the veins. I really hope these stocking work. He also told me that a lot of surgeons send their patients home from the hospital with these stockings to prevent swelling and blood clots.

    Well, thanks for asking and I hope that you have a good night....


     
    Old 09-24-2003, 06:32 AM   #39
    shg
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    Good Morning Brooke, I hope all is well with you today and the weather “Down Under” is beautiful.

    I’m doing well today thank you for asking, you? The walking was great yesterday, I did several ˝ mile walks throughout the day and I hope to do the same today and yes, I am walking by myself. For the longer distances I’ll walk with someone but for the shorter one’s I’m fine.

    I can’t believe that you have to pay that much per bag. And for 3 of them? Wow, I was told I need just 2 and I really only needed one during the operation b/c they used a “cell saver.” Afterwards, about 3 days later they did in fact give me the other one I had put away. I feel bad.
    Living next to the UN is great except on days where the General Counsel are in session; the security is nuts and you need proof of where you live just to get on the block. Thankfully some of the Secret Service guys know my dog so they let me go by b/c of her.
    I appreciate your words about the no nonsense aspect of my personality when it comes to healing, etc. I look at it as, I can let the situation get the best of me or I can just grab hold of the situation, make it work for me and take it as it comes. Don’t get me wrong, I hate needles, etc just like you but what can I do? I had to have them, I was in pain before, my life was limited and so on…therefore, the operation, this recovery period, etc are hopefully just going to add to a better standard of life. What more can I ask for?
    Keep your chin up…
    SHG
    Tomorrow,

    I still can’t believe your situation. Where do you live? It’s just so foreign to me b/c of the 3 hospitals I looked into, all 3 wanted me in their own blood bank and my insurance covered it. I have Oxford Freedom…and I thought they were just so so, I guess I was wrong…I was even thinking of changing it to a PPO. Now I have to think it over again.

     
    Old 09-24-2003, 10:33 AM   #40
    camelia
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    Camelia 'back' again to chat to friends
    Today's my 3rd day after the steroid inject & the nurse said it should kick in today . . . but don't think it's gonna after all ;-(
    Not taking any pain meds so I know whats happening with my body & feet are burning like crazzzee - so strange cos they feel really hot but when I touch them they're quite cool
    When I saw the surgeon he siad I would need decompression & fusion of L5, L4 & S1 - anyone know the shorthand version of that - not sure what a 360, 2 level or PLIF is actually
    I know I seem to have done this in a strange way - having just seen the surgeon once - but do have more appointments lined up in october what with the myelogram & xrays to check on movement in my spine - when I saw him he wasnt too sure that I would need surgery & wanted me to try the epidurals first
    Also wondering if I should cancel the 2nd epidural if the first doesn't have any effect
    thanks guys - your advice & support is invaluable
    C

    What is that

    ------------------
    Spondylolisthesis for over 25 years without pain symptoms
    Leg aching started 12/02 & burning feet pain in 7/03 finally diagnosed as pressure on nerves at L5 & S1 on 9/8/03
    Scheduled to have 2 Epidurals & Myelogram
    Provisional surgery date 11/11/03
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    Spondylolisthesis at L5S1 = nerve impingement = pain in legs & feet
    Laminectomy April 21, 2004

     
    Old 09-24-2003, 10:45 AM   #41
    shg
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    C,

    Each procedure you mentioned or technique are different. I think the best thing to do is wait and see what the surgeon says. In short though, a fusion is when they "fuse" 2 bones together; in this case, it's 2 vertebrae. PLIF is one way of doing it, a 360 degree fusion is another similar way which can or may not include PLIF. Finally, there's the question of hardware which includes screws and rods. I had a 2-level (as you indicated you needed) 360 degree (means they opened me up in the front and back), with hardware (screws and rods), cadaver and bone from my own hip and here I am 3 weeks later feeling great...thank God. Don't get yourself wound up until you know what you need.

    As for the 2nd or even 1st ESI, remember, it does take time and it may take more than once. If you have an upset stomach, do you take something once and if it doesn't help that first time, give up? Give yourself a chance and give the medicine a chance. It may in fact take 2 or 3 times and if not than worry about the next step.

    When it comes to the ailments we have here, it takes time. I know first hand that we want a quick fix but it doesn't happen that way all the time...one day at a time...

    Speak to the surgeon, get the diagnostics ASAP and if the place you have to go to doesn't have an appt for a long while, go to another...look around...make them work for you.

    SHG

     
    Old 09-24-2003, 11:47 AM   #42
    camelia
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    just checked in hoping there'd perhaps been a reassuring reply - & there is - thank you Sean
    you're right - I'm always in a rush looking for that quick fix so i can get on with my life . . .
    which just feels like it's been on hold since March
    If I saw you i'd hug you
    C
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    Old 09-24-2003, 11:55 AM   #43
    shg
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    C,

    If we ever meet, there will be a hug for you. I'm like you in many ways but we have to give thins a chance. Second, remember, if you have concerns, make your Dr. talk to you and if they don't, get a new one. Just like with the MRI's, etc. I cannot emphasize enough that you have to make it work for you and if you have a hard time thinking about it that way, think of this, medicine is now a business and if the Dr's want our money, they have to work for it as do the radiology centers, etc.

    Go get em and relax.

    SHG

     
    Old 09-24-2003, 11:57 AM   #44
    shg
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    Brooke,

    Congrats on your second page...nice job. Did you think you'd have this when you started here as a shy newbie?

    SHG

     
    Old 09-24-2003, 12:04 PM   #45
    FRACBACK2
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    Hi Brooke79,

    On the pre-op testing, I have to see a cardiologist and a hematologist. I had a angioplasty about 8 years ago, so the doc wants to make sure the "ticker" will make it thru the surgery. I will probably have a stress test, but it won't be the treadmill kind, I can't use my legs that well. The hematologist will check me for coagulopathy, which is a problem with clotting. The nurse stuck me with a pin and I bled a little more than I should have.

    Any pre-op testing they do just makes the doc a little more comfortable about doing the surgery. It puts my mind to ease a little too.

    By the way, I am doing the testing prior to a thorascopic discectomy at T9-10.

    Good luck to you,
    Joe

    ------------------
    Thoracic disc herniations T7-8 and T9-10. Bulges at T6-7 and T8-9.
    Pars fracture at L5
    Constant mid back pain
    Weakness and numbness in both legs
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    Thoracic disc herniations T7-8 and T9-10. Bulges at T6-7 and T8-9.
    Pars fracture at L5
    Constant mid back pain
    Weakness and numbness in both legs

     
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