Questions about Del's Possible Surgery
08-03-2009, 10:14 AM (This post was last modified: 08-03-2009 10:28 AM by MJC.)
RE: Questions about Del's Possible Surgery
My Dearest Red,
I will do my best to try and help you with some information since I have been through all this more than once. I would really need to know more about what the procedures will be an how many levels and which ones, neck and back. I will share some of what my own experiences were with you and the things that I did to recover.
1. The day he comes home will he be able to use the chair to get up to his bed upstairs?
If you are talking about the glide chair, I really am not sure about that. It is best to get his docs opinion.
2. What kind of bed will he need to help him?
The doctors alway seem to reccommend a firm mattress but for me that did not work. I think it sorta depends on the person. I have done better with a softer mattress. IT does seem like he will be having alot done and you might want to inquire about gettting a hosptial bed for a while. I would advice you to talk to you doctor about that. I had a girlfriend that needed a hospital bed when you had both neck and back surgery done on her. If he is doing both area the positioning may be important for him and he just might need that type of bed for a while.
3. In terms of a shower, what will he need?
The best thing is if you have a shower that he does not have to pick up his legs to step into and can just walk into it. If he has to step up over the tub to get into the shower, make sure you have safety bars for him to hold on to. You should have a bath stool in case he needs to sit. If you get the bath stool make sure you have a shower head that you can remove because that will be easier for him to wash himself.
4. When do the bandages typically come off. And do they typically use staples or sealed stitiches.
I have always had staples on my incisions. They will tell you not to remove the bandage until the doc see's him for his first visit in the office after surgery. After that they will tell you what type of bandage they will want on it. I had to use the Tegaderm (sp?) with a gauge padding under it. It is not a major thing to change. Richard use to change mind so I know you can do it.
5. How long before he will he typical? He is a diabetic and so this is an issue where food is concerned.
If he was not diabetic, diet would be normal so therefore I would think they will want you to follow his diabetic diet. As for being typical, it is different for different people. Not everyone's pain level is the same. He may be typical the say he comes home but I know he will need the pain meds for a while. This is a difficult question to try and judge how he will do.
6. What kind of medications for pain will come home with him? Did they help you when you came home?
My surgeron is not into giving heavy stuff. They always prescribed Loritab or Darvocet with Soma for muscle spams. Yes, it did give me relief because the most excruciating pain was taken care of with the surgical repair when they free up those nerves that are trapped. All doctors are different when it comes to what type of pain med they will give you. Some give the harder stuff and some don't. I am sure he will go home with something for pain, a muscle relaxer and something for sleep.
7. Will a recliner be ok for sitting up in the day? Should he lay on his back, side, or sit up the most?
I would say No to the recliner but ask his doc. A straight back chair is what he will most likely need. I was not allowed to sit in a recliner for about 2 months. The straight back chair is to help in keeping your spine straight and not in any type of bent position. I was only allowed to sit for 15 minutes at at time then 30 minutes later then it came to whatever I could tolerate. You would be surprised how sitting too long will case you pain and make you feel bad. Your doc will give you his limits as to this question. I am just speaking from my own experiences and your docs advice may differ. I found it most comfortable on my side. Sometime if I laid on my back it would cause pressure in my lower part but I would advise you if he lays on his back to put pillows or a wedge under his knees to keep that pressure from building up so quickly.
8. What about bowel habits...was this an issue...
I never had any problem but what I did was took Surfac ( a stool softener) just in case. You do not want him to be constipated and a softener will help to keep the stools soft.
9. What about getting dressed? How did you all get your shirts on? Did you use button up shirts versus pull over shirts?
Yes, button up shirts will be best. If I put on a shirt that had to come over my head, I could not do it alone. Not that it can't be done but you don't want to take the chance of hurting yourself.
10. What about pants? Should I buy some stretch top pants versus his typical levis with buttons before he comes home?
Let him use elastic waist pants for a while. They will be more comfortable for him and he will need as much comfort as he can get. Like warm up pants or anything of that nature.
11. Is there anything else th at I should consider. I asked this becasue we need to do it before he has the surgery as I don't drive and we do not have a lot of support here to run out for last minute ites. I am planner and want this all planned out well to keep him as comfortable as possible and yet active....
The doctor will most likely want him to do some walking. Try to allow him to walk where the surface is nice and flat. In other words not in the grass or on rocky roads....paved ones.....smooth.
12. how much walking was recommended and on what time frames following surgery.
At first mine wanted me to try and walk for 15 minutes and that was difficult even though I walked slow. I did the best that I could. Then you will graduate as you feel you can do more. Men have the tendancy to think they can do more but it is not wise unless your doc say's so. Only do what the doc advises even if you feel you can walk more.
13. How long will he be in the hospital?
With the way they do drive by surgeries these days, they will ship him out as soon as he is pretty stable. I do feel he will be there for at least 2 days but what really matters is what they will be doing to him and I don't know that. I would say the more intense the longer the stay. The day of the surgery and the following day depending on what he has done. If he needs more then they will keep him. He will have to be able to walk before they discharge him. These days they get you out of the bed and make you walk the same day you have the surgery. This has been my experience. Also, when he comes home he will most likely be allowed to pick up only his fork and the remote control for the TV.
14. How long before he could drive...short distances and how long before he could drive all the way to Oregon again?
Again, this depends on your doc. Mine was very slow at allowing me to drive and venture out. First, with the neck your movement will be restricted and especially if he has a collar. That being said, it is not very safe for him to drive. Second, it is not so much his restrictions but they do not want you on the road because of the chance of having an accident. If you were in an accident, it could be pretty devastating after this type of surgery. I think the driving restrictions are more related to being at risk for an accident. When I was first allowed to drive which was probably about 2 months, I could only drive locally and not a far distance. They will not want him riding long distances anyway even if he is not driving.
Red, I hope this helps you. If I can think of anything else I will let you know. Do you know when he is planning on having his surgery and what exactly to they plan on doing during the surgery? If he needs fusion will they use his own bone or will they get a donor bone from a bone bank? How much repair work and how many levels will they be doing during this one surgery? Sounds like he has alot and I am concerned as to how much a doctor will do in a one time lick. Hope to hear from you soon and call me if you need to talk more about all of this. Love ya Sis.
Lumbar Laminectomy L5 - S1, Lumbar Disectomy L 4 -5, Cervical Microdisectomy C-4 -5, Cervical Anterior Fusion C 4 -5, Cervical Anterior Fusion C 5 - 6, Lumbar Disectomy, Laminectomy and Foraminotmy L 3 - 4, Cryo Surgery Lumbar. --Ongoing Problems..Ã‚Â Permanently Totally Disabled.
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RE: Questions about Del's Possible Surgery - MJC - 08-03-2009 10:14 AM
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