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  • My Stapedectomy report

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    Old 01-11-2008, 08:56 AM   #76
    CAB1
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Chrissy,

    I'm glad the perspective helped. I was sad to see everyone so bummed.

    There is a 2% chance of having to have revision surgery. I'm in that 2%.

    I had the LEFT ear done in January 07 and its fine.
    I had the RIGHT ear done in May 07 and had normal hearing 3 months after surgery....but then it went bad and I just had it redone on December18, 07.

    If you click on the left side of the screen under the date and time of this post ON my user id "CAB1" there is an option to "find more posts by CAB1". That takes you to a page that lists all of my posts. Go to page 3 and read from the bottom up (date order).

    It is also useful if you want to follow any "one" persons recovery process. That really sheds light on the time-line when you read one persons story at a time. I would suggest reading "Andy 01" and "Dwalt" stories. They are both at the year mark so you can see the progress from start to finish.

    Take care, don't over do anything and rest when you body tells you to. My dizzies would resurface when I was overly tired after the 1st and 2nd surgeries for about 4 weeks.

    More later,

    -Carol-

    Last edited by CAB1; 01-11-2008 at 09:11 AM.

     
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    Old 01-15-2008, 04:59 AM   #77
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    I'm at just under 7 weeks now, and all my distortion is gone! It was funny, one day I just realized that there was no buzzing or vibrating any more! Even at loud places, like the gym at my son's basketball games, there is no distortion (bad speaker) like there was just a week ago....Even when the band plays!

    That said, I still don't have full hearing back in my operated ear. I believe it is better than pre-surgery, but I hope that it gets better than this. I go in for my hearing test in mid-February, so I'm curious how much better my "bionic" ear is. I was a little discouraged when I slept through my alarm clock the other day and needed my husband to kick me to wake up. I was hoping those days were over!!!

    I am in the process of receiving all my bills and statements for my surgery right now, and am rather shocked at the cost of this surgery. I suppose I should have looked into this in more detail before I had it done, but I have insurance and knew that I needed to have the surgery regardless. The total cost (pre-insurance) is approaching $15,000! I'm curious if this is in line with what others have experienced.

     
    Old 01-15-2008, 06:51 AM   #78
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    12 days post-op - Feel great, no dizzies. After 4 days post-op my hearing has been great. Still some noises are too loud, but I'm getting used to that. I went for my post-op appointment yesterday and Dr. Owens took out the packing. That was a weird feeling and today my hearing seems a little off, but not too bad. I feel very fortunate that I'm feeling so well. I know to take it easy and rest when I'm tired. I don't work outside the home so I can take it easy when need be, kudos to those of you who went go back to work so soon after this surgery. I don't know if I could've done that. I did forget to ask the doc about working out. Any suggestions on when I should go back to the gym to run and lift weights?

    Carol - is your hearing the same in both ears now? Do you hear in stereo?

    Thanks to all for your postings, this info was way more helpful than I could have gotten from any nurse or doc.

     
    Old 01-15-2008, 07:21 AM   #79
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    I was told three weeks before running at all or lifting more than 7-10 pounds. I'm a regular distance runner, so this was tough for me but I think it was for the best. Now I am back to my regular schedule. You may want to call your own doctor to see what he/she recommends for your situation.

     
    Old 01-15-2008, 08:20 AM   #80
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Hi all,

    Just a quick answer on the "costs" of this surgery.

    Yes, my PRE-insurance totals for each surgery was right at $15,000. The insurance company disallows or cuts down the allowable amounts considerably!
    I had a $500 deductible and then my insurance pays 80%.

    January 07 surgery - my total out of pocket $1228 - including medications.
    May 07 surgery - total out of pocket $687
    Dec 07 surgery - $758 (revision surgery Surgeon charges $500 more for this than original surgeries).

    So..if your plan is anything like mine, it's still cheaper than hearing aids and last lifetime instead of a couple years.


    More later,

    -Carol-

     
    Old 01-15-2008, 10:48 AM   #81
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Hi, Gang!

    I am at 33 days post-op. Sunday was my 1-month mark and my husband and I marveled at the progress. Who would have thought I would be at this spot just 30 days later?

    Things are still improving. The closed-up feeling I have every morning is getting shorter and shorter each day. The funny thing is that I have gotten so used to the dramatic difference when the ear is open, I find catch myself thinking "Wait -- is it still working?" I'll listen for a second and realize, yes, it is still working great.

    Last night, just before I drifted off to sleep, I could hear my husband on the phone -- all the way downstairs!!

    My surgery costs a little over $10,000 for the hospital and doctor expenses. Carol is right that insurance tends to have discounts applied, so my insurance was only billed about $3,000. THANKFULLY, my husband continues to have phenomenal coverage, so I didn't even have a deductible or co-pay. If I had waited to have the surgery in 2008, the costs would have been larger for me.

    I go back on January 23 for the tests to see where I am at.

    Thanks, Carol, for the reminder to be patient. It is worth it. Very much so.

     
    Old 01-15-2008, 06:36 PM   #82
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Hi All,

    I hope everyone is doing well today.

    Courtney - Yes I do hear in stereo. I also can tell which direction sounds are coming from. I haven't been able to do that in many many years! No, I do not hear the same in both ears. My left ear has some nerve damage that can't be fixed but 90% of my loss was conductive loss and that part is fixed. Hearing in that ear is SRT 30. Normal is SRT 20 and less. I do not have the numbers yet on the right ear, I'll get those Jan. 28th. But I did the official at home hearing test that we all do..."cover one ear, then the other, etc" and I can hear much better out of the newly operated on right ear.

    Elke - Aaaaah! You are at the point! It's all downhill from there!

    Update on me - 28 days post op.

    I can hear great. I'm still having some sounds that are waaaaaay to loud. They are not rumbly, just loud. I know it's just a matter of getting used to it. I'm a tryin! Other than that I feel great. No other ligering "recovery phases" at this time.

    More later,

    -Carol-

     
    Old 01-15-2008, 07:39 PM   #83
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Hi All,

    Congrats to everyone who is doing good and hearing better and better everyday! On January 2nd my ear opened up and has been open every day since then. My husband looks for the thumbs up or thumbs down each morning when we wake up and so far it has been thumbs UP for 14 days now.

    Did anyone else out there experience complications during their surgery? My foot plate came loose and had to be removed and then put back in. Because of that, my recovery has been slower than most of you but it is so fun to read all the posts because we are all experiencing the same thing!

    At 3 1/2 months post op I am still kind of dizzy but not the "Bobble Head" that I was for 3 months. Now my ear is like Rice Krispies "Snap, Crackle and Pop" but as long as I can hear out of it, who cares!

    Thanks again to everyone who writes about their experiences and especially to Carol who keeps it all together.

    Annie in MN

     
    Old 01-16-2008, 03:03 PM   #84
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Hello! I am so excited to have found this board. I just had my surgery last week, January 10th, and it is so nice to read about people having similar experiences, both before and after surgery. My dad had the same surgery a few years ago and had a horrible experience--lots of vertigo and vomiting in the days/weeks after surgery. He still has little to no hearing in that ear and experiences vertigo at times. Needless to say, I was really nervous that the same would happen to me.

    But..

    I came out of surgery feeling great! I was only in "twilight" during the surgery, so I could hear everything the doctor was doing. It was actually quite horrible, hearing the grinding, suction, and other strange things going on in there. I was sedated enough not to protest, though, and in the middle of the surgery I actually asked the doc if I could keep the piece he was removing so I could show it to my students! He hooked up the new piece and I could instantly hear everything. It did have that strange, hollow, too-loud sound, but I could hear! He did a quick tuning fork test and packed it up. I had to stay there for about 4 and a half hours lying on my side, which got uncomfortable. I had no pain for a while, but eventually felt a little, so they gave me some morphine, which made me sleep for almost the entire recovery time. At the end of the 4 and a half hours, the nurse kept asking if I felt okay, which I did. Absolutely no dizziness, nausea, or pain. They sat me up slowly, looking very concerned, but I felt great. I stood up, got dressed, walked to the bathroom, and then they wheeled me out to the car. From admitting to discharge was about 7 hours. The car ride home was easy, and I rested on the couch for the rest of the day. I haven't needed a single pain pill and experienced no nausea, and it's already day 7! The surgery was on a Thursday, and I was back at work on Monday. Everything is really loud...almost like I have dog hearing. I am amazed at the things I can hear again. I was at the grocery store Monday night and heard the background music that they play for the first time in years! My husband is so happy, but also lamenting the fact that he has to be more quiet now...no more blasting the shower radio while getting ready for work in the morning. Because sounds are so loud, I am having a little trouble telling how far away they are. For example, my cell phone was ringing in another room and I thought it was right beside me because I was hearing it so clearly.
    I go on Monday, Jan. 21st to get the packing out, and to also get the steri-strips off of the incision on my arm. They removed a piece of vein from my arm. I'm not exactly sure how they used it, but the O.R. nurse said it was a buffer between the ear drum and prosthetic so that the body would not reject it. Anyone else have the vein thing?
    I'm so grateful for the easy recovery thus far. I am guessing it is a combination of my relatively young age (27 years) and a great surgeon. I also tried to prepare for the surgery by doing yoga for the past few months and eating more fruits and vegetables...both of which are such a huge lifestyle change for me.

    I am supposed to have the other ear done eventually and am scared that I won't have as great of an experience with that one. Has anyone had both ears done and experienced different results with the second one?

     
    Old 01-18-2008, 11:30 AM   #85
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    I'm at seven weeks today, and my distortion is back. After about a week of no distortion I am hearing "static" once again. It's not awful, but very noticable, especially with the radio on in the car and at basketball games. I guess this means that I am still in recovery mode....Which is OK because I feel my ear is not fully opened up yet to full hearing.

    Does anyone know what exactly this "static" is that I am hearing? I hear it with sound, not all the time.

     
    Old 01-18-2008, 05:34 PM   #86
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    I can't say what the static is...but I used to have that distorted static sound before the surgery when I was exposed to really loud sounds, like at concerts and games. Sorry, I'm sure that doesn't help you at all.

     
    Old 01-23-2008, 07:27 PM   #87
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    7 Weeks Post Op

    I had my first hearing test after the surgery and I am thrilled! The doctor said the results made his day.

    Before the surgery, sounds had to be 60dB at 1K Hz. Today, I could hear tones 15dB at 1K Hz! The stapendectomy has effectively given me "normal" hearing. I'll have another test in three months to see where it stands then.

    The doctor said there will still be recovery, just as others have reported. Those things will eventually go away, too.

    I couldn't be happier. I can really enjoy music and it sounds so much better. Conversations actually mean something because I can understand them. Meetings are comfortable instead of lots of work as I would struggle to hear what is going on.

    Based on my experience I would encourage anyone who has otosclerosis to ask your doctor about a stapendectomy. It is one of the best things I have done.

    Thanks for letting me share.

     
    Old 01-23-2008, 07:38 PM   #88
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Congratulations Pressed! I'm happy for you !

     
    Old 01-25-2008, 11:29 AM   #89
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    I have just found this site and as I sit here 2 days out from surgery I have no idea what to expect. I feel really good, yesterday was better than today but I still feel like I could get up and do something. I don't sit, ever, having 2 kids and working full time as a 3rd grade teacher. From the few entries I've read, it sounds like most stapedectomies are successful as I anticipate mine will be. I put the phone to my packed ear and can hear, although muffled b/c of the packing but it's a good sign. I haven't needed any meds other than some tylenol as precaution. I'm sore in the neck and shoulders and bored to no end. My mouth has a funny taste, but I think that's expected. I don't know when I should start trying anything in fear that the prosthesis will slip. I plan on returning to work next Thursday as long as I feel energized enough to get there. Does anyone suggest keeping cotton inserted as a cushion for noise? I do teach 24 third graders and noise is sometimes unavoidable. I am eager to get back to a normal routine but am looking forward to my husband going back to work and being alone for a day or two (my kids go to school just down the street and can get them there w/out driving Thanks for listening and giving your thoughts.

     
    Old 01-25-2008, 05:20 PM   #90
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    Re: My Stapedectomy report

    Loren,
    I went to work on the 5th day after surgery, and I teach pre-school. I began the day with a riveting explanation of the surgery, and told them that my ear was sensitive to loud noises. I asked them to use quiet voices for the day, and to remind their friends if they hear them being loud. My sweeties were great about reminding each other to be quiet, and a few of them would periodically ask me if it was too loud in the room. I did wear cotton in the ear to help muffle some of the noise. I kept having to ask my assistant if the kids were loud or if it was just me, and of course, it was just me. It was a little stressful because it just seemed so LOUD, but it went okay. Play time wasn't the funnest time. Now I'm just past the two week point, and I've adjusted to hearing again. I am having to ask the kids to be quiet a lot more than usual, but that's because I'm hearing all of the little sounds they have always made that I never used to hear. My assistant told me, "They always make all that noise, but you never cared before cause you couldn't hear it!" Haha.

     
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