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Thread: Having Carpal Tunnel Surgery in the morning.

  1. #1

    Having Carpal Tunnel Surgery in the morning.

    Hello I am new to the forums having just found them. I am 31 years old and have been a paraplegic for 13 years. I am going in the morning for the surgery and was just wondering anyone's experience that has already gone through it.

    I am having both done at the same time. After surgery I will be staying in the hospital for the period that I have the bandages on for care as I will not be able to take care of myself. The reason I figured to get both done and over is that I would have just as bad a time trying to do things for myself with only one hand. I really do not have the help for my bowel care or cathing at home if I was unable to do it.

    Anyway I am extremely nervous as the time ticks down because for us our hands are our everything. Being without them is like being injured all over again as I had to learn to use my hands to make up for the loss of my legs. Just looking for others to share their experience to help to ease my mind. How long did it take before you were using your manual chair again? Or doing your bowel care, or transferring with no issues.

  2. #2
    Senior Member rdf's Avatar
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    Hey Lyceius, good luck man. It'll all be good. Treat it like R&R, let the nurses take care of you for awhile. Good luck
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    Thanks!

  3. #3
    thanks a lot.. I am glad I actually found this place... Frantic googleing led me here as I was trying to find people in my situation that might have gone through this. At first I was excited as to get rid of the numbness and the pain is a great thought... Now I am just plain freaking out lol... Just little jitters I guess.

  4. #4
    Follow the restrictions, let it heal and you shouldn't have any problem.
    Hope for a speedy recovery.
    CWO

  5. #5
    Senior Member lynnifer's Avatar
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    Have an excellent rest and recovery! I think my left wrist is giving me trouble so I'll be watching how you deal. Good luck!
    Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

    T-11 Flaccid Paraplegic due to TM July 1985 @ age 12

  6. #6
    I am c7 (right) / t2 (left) and had it in my left hand, surgery done in 1992. They would normally send an AB person home the next day, but I stayed a few days.

    I was worried about independent transfers, BP, ISC, manual chair , turning, cooking etc. I live alone with 1-2 hours a week help with housecleaning. My urologist advised putting in a urethral catheter till I could do ISC again.

    Fortunately I had had a molded splint made beforehand, when I had tried using this at night to see if it would help the CTS, which it didn't. It was made by an OT or PT using the type of plastic which is soaked in hot water, molded then cut and goes on with a Velcro. I was able to use this after the surgery with the bandages on to do just about everything myself.
    It was mainly useful in transfers. I could bend my knuckles and press on the knuckle on the wheelchair seat, instead of grabbing the sidearm of the chair. It might have worked without the splint, or possibly with the standard quad splint used by higher level quads.

    I asked the surgeon what was the worst that could happen. He said if I fell in the transfer, hit the heel of my hand, and opened the wound. Then someone would just have to stitch the skin back up, and re-bandage it. It wouldn't mean going back to surgery. Seemed a fair risk. So I just stayed so the nurses could be there at first, but I did everything, if I remember rightly.

    I think the ISC and BP would have been ok just with the bandage. Not sure about wheelchair pushing. I had some pressure sore problems - there was 24 hrs when I had a drip in one arm, the surgery on the other and couldn't turn myself, and didn't manage to persuade the staff to. This was in a private hospital not a Spinal Unit - essential to organise a pressure bed beforehand. If need be I'd hire one from a medical hire place - I have that lined up now.

    So it was:
    transfers - day after surgery with supervision.
    BP - day after. I did BP without help. I use the left hand for BP. I had the splint on with a glove over the whole thing I think. I think the nurse might have helped a bit with the shower that time. I think the BP wasn't too successful from constipation from the drugs - it's worth considering extra laxatives etc.
    ISC - two or three days when they took the indwelling out. I used the right hand as the "clean" or active hand to put in the catheter. Though I'm sure it would have been ok the other way round. It's a matter of keeping the wrist straight, and bending at the knuckle and using the thumb.
    manual chair - day after for the short distance to the bathroom.

    I went home after 5 days total so must have been 3 days post op I guess, and managed alone just the same as before - with just the housecleaning. Though I'd notified the Homecare people beforehand I might need more, I didn't. In retrospect I think I could have gone home the next day if need be.

    In summary - the pressure bed and if possible a splint, are a really good idea.

    BTW it fixed the problem completely, with time, even though I'd had the sensation gone for 2 years - from driving across Australia one-handed. 20 years later I'm getting something similar, though all up the arm and neck - different story.
    Last edited by ThomasB; 02-01-2012 at 11:20 AM.

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