Saturday, August 15, 2009

One month post op today...

It has been a month today since I had my surgery. The past week or so was very difficult. After returning to Nashville a couple weeks ago, I had multiple days of severe pain. I had been doing so well in Knoxville and was even having some days where all i had to take for pain was tylenol! This was huge for me since I have been taking narcotics pretty much every day for the past 6 months. After coming back to Nashville and having so much pain, I was very discouraged. Not only was I in pain, but I was also very depressed at the thought that the surgery might not have been the cure or fix for my pain. I didnt even let myself voice these thoughts and fears because I was afraid to actually say it out loud. After a couple short phone calls, my mom could tell something was wrong and finally got it out of me. It was at this point when I pretty much broke down. I had a good long cry and then took a good long nap. Being able to talk about my fears did help but it did make it more real. I emailed the surgeons nurse practitioner and she told me that revision surgeries can take longer to recover from and that this could be my nerves just kinda rebelling against everything and beginning the healing process. I had my one month follow up appointment this past monday. My mom came in town and harrison went as well. I voiced all my concerns to the doctor and he again was not overly concerned. They took x-rays, which looked good. They felt good about me starting physical therapy but not comfortable yet with me driving since I am still on alot of medication. The other change they made was to my medication for the nerve pain called Lyrica. Lyrica is an anti seizure medication but it also has a great use for fibromyalgia and nerve pain. I have been on 75 mg for several months and since my pain has been so severe, they wanted me to triple my dose. I have been titrating up this week and have started to feel a little better although the medication makes me tired. I seem to still hurt alot at night so i dont sleep well. During the day, I still tire very easily. My mom stayed till thursday and I did alot of activity but after being out of the house for a few hours, I get exhausted. My body is still not used to activity so thats something I will just have to gradually work on.
As far as physical therapy, I start aqua therapy this week where I will do therapy in a small pool. Once exercises in the pool get easy, I will then start doing strengthening and exercises "on land." I have exercises I do at home that I started this week at home for range of motion. They estimate that I have permanently lost about 20% range of motion since my cervical spine is (hopefully) one solid bone from c 3/4 to c6/7.
Harrison continues to be an amazing support and the best husband in the world. I honestly dont know how he puts up with me. He is so caring and is always asking if I need anything or if I am doing ok. At night, when I dont sleep, if i even get out of bed to go to the bathroom he wakes up to make sure I'm ok and if I need anything. He is so so sweet and has taken such good care of me. He has been my rock through all this and I dont know what I would do or where i would be without him. While getting married in the midst of all my health issues and pain was difficult, having him beside me as my husband has been the best blessing. He works so hard during the day and then comes home to take care of me. He continues to be very successful selling signs and is on the verge of closing on a huge project that he has worked termendously hard on for the past month. I am so proud of him.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Recovering well

Hello all. So sorry for lack of updates. All my energy has pretty much gone to recovering the past couple weeks. My surgery on July 15 went very well and the doctor was pleased. I spent the night in the hospital and was able to come home the next day. The pain after surgery was pretty bad...not only in my neck, but in my hip. To replace the disk that were removed, they chiseled bone off my left hip. I have about a 2 inch incision on my hip and about a 3 inch incision on my neck where my previous incision was. The doctor did find that I had not healed correctly from my first surgery so he did redo those levels as well. My mom was in Nashville for the days after my surgery and on the sunday following surgery, I went home to Knoxville with her to recover. Harrison had to get back to work and with him needing to be gone all day for work, it was better for me to be in knoxville where my mom could take care of me. I spent 11 days in Knoxville with my parents and just got back to Nashville Thursday night. Its good to be home and definitely good to be back with my wonderful husband who i missed terribly. I seem to be recovering pretty well, although I still am having some pain. I can't drive for another 2 weeks till I go back to the doctor and I also have to wear a soft collar neck brace till then as well. All in all, things are going well. After i see the doctor in a couple weeks, I will get back into physical therapy. My recovery time is supposed to be about 8 weeks so hopefully I can go back to work around the middle of September....thats the hope and the goal at least so we'll see what happens. I want to thank everyone for all the well wishes and prayers. I have definitely felt so much support and love during this time. I'll try to update sooner next time!