Surgery is a go for tomorrow at 11:30. It will take about 3 hour and I will spend a couple hours in recovery before I will be put in a room where I will spend at least 1 night, maybe 2 depending on how I am doing. The plan for surgery is to go in a first remove the metal plate and 6 screws from my first surgery. The doctor will then assess my fusion of c4/5 and c5/6. There is concern that I am not fused from my surgery, meaning basically that I could still be experiencing some pain from that area. If needed, he will redo my previous procedure and incorporate the c 3/4 disc as well. They will take bone from my hip to place into the areas that previously contained my discs or cadaver bone from my last surgery. I'm really worried about the pain in my hip after surgery because i've heard its pretty bad.
I know that this is the right decision but it doesnt make the idea of surgery any less scary. My knowledge as a nurse isnt necessarily a good thing in this situation because i just worry about all the things that can go wrong. I know that God will take care of me and that I have alot of people praying for me. Its been a long, difficult 4 months that I have been struggling with this and I'm ready to get it over with. I'm ready to get back to life and to work. As far as recovery, they said it would be about 8 weeks before i could get back to work, and even then I might have to go back doing paperwork type stuff, not patient care because I may not be able to lift and stuff yet. We just have to take that as it comes.
I ask for prayers tomorrow for me, my surgeons, nurses, and the whole medical team that will take care of me tomorrow. Please pray that I dont have major issues with pain post op and that things go smoothly. I will post as soon as I am able. Thanks for the support.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
I write tonight to ask for some strong prayer. As I mentioned in my last post, Dr. Davis, the orthopaedic surgeon I saw at Vandy, did recommend surgery and my original surgeon in knoxville throught as a diagnostic, i should try traction first. I have been back in physical therapy for the past 2 weeks, 3 days a week. My physical therapist has done manual traction and today i was put in traction using the machine. Traction does help relieve the pain as do other things they do at PT but the relief is temporary....lasting minutes to hours after an appointment. I had decided last week that I wanted to go ahead and get on the surgery list since Dr. Davis's wait for surgery is about 6 weeks out so i figured it would be good to just go ahead and get on the list that way once i did PT for 3 or 4 weeks I could decide about surgery but I would have already gone through most of the waiting period. I went to physical therapy this morning and I talked to my therapist at length. She said there are lots of exercises she wants me to start but cant yet because my pain is still not under control. So she is limited to what she can do till my pain gets calmed down. I heard from the ortho clinic today and my date for surgery was put in the computer as August 19....6 weeks away. I asked to be put on the cancellation list. If there is a cancellation, the Dr. considers me a good candidate for short notice surgery since I am other wise healthy. The huge concern about waiting that long is my job. As of right now, I have been out of work for 3 and a 1/2 months. It is vanderbilts policy that if you are on a leave of absence for 6 months, you are terminated. To get my job back I would have to go back through the whole interview process. I would loose my insurance, tuition benefits, etc. This is a terrifying thought for me. So with this in mind, I sent an email to Dr. Davis and his nurse practitioner about this dilemma. Well I just checked my email and I had an email from Dr. Davis saying he would check into getting surgery moved up and a second email from his nurse practitioner saying they may have a cancellation next wednesday. So in a matter of hours I have gone from the thought of having surgery in 6 weeks to thinking there is a possibility I could have a major operation in 6 days. While I feel that surgery is the right thing to do, I am scared. I know more now then I did the first time i had surgery about the risks and stuff since I have been a nurse for 2 and a half years. I will find out Monday for sure if I will have surgery on wednesday. Harrison and I are going home to knoxville this weekend so my family and I will talk about all this. I just really need some prayers right now about this whole process. I will definitely update if I do in fact have surgery next week. Pray hard. Thanks.