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Right hand sympathectomy


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#1 LisaBulman

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 02:46 AM

Last Tuesday I had a right hand sympathectomy. My Raynaud's was out of control, ulcers on my fingers for 4-5 months at a time and even throughout the summer. I had tried every available option out there. In the past 10 years I have tried numerous meds (most with side effects I just couldn't tolerate)and three trials as well too. Finally decided to have the surgery and it was relatively easy. I arrived at the hospital at 7:15am, went into the OR at 9:45 and I was home by 1:30 in the afternoon. The block I was administered lasted more than 24 hours and when it wore off I was waiting for the pain to set in. It never happened. I have been relatively pain free. On Sunday I took off the 1/2 cast and changed my bandages. The only place I am sore is at the incision sites. Honestly I can't believe how easy an operation this was. This might sound crazy but I can't wait to get my other hand done!! I have already noticed a difference with the Raynaud's. It is not 100% but it is a HUGE improvement compared to how it was. You can see my pics of my hand and wrist.here and here Warning: do not look if you get queezy!!

Hugs,
Lisa


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#2 Joelf

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 04:06 AM

What a very neat job, Lisa!!! :VeryHappy:

I'm so glad the operation was a success & that it has encouraged you about getting the other hand done.

Here's wishing you a speedy recovery!!! :D

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#3 janey

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 07:34 AM

Lisa,
I am SO GLAD that you are already seeing the difference and that the experience was mild in comparison to what you have been through for years! Hooray!!!!!! The stitches look nasty although the cuts themselves look very neat. I have to admit that I'm ignorant when it comes to knowing what a sympathectomy actually is and what they do and the physical aspects of how it helps to decrease the symptoms of Raynaud's and ulcers. Looks like I have a little research to do. If you feel like typing - could you provide a "brief" explanation?

I'm just thrilled for you! :emoticons-yes:
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#4 Amanda Thorpe

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 08:23 AM

Hello Lisa

I am so glad you've already felt an improvement and hope you continue to do so. Thanks for the pictures, very informative.

Take care.
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#5 Jeannie McClelland

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 10:23 AM

Woohoo! Wonderful news! :happy-day:
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#6 LisaBulman

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 11:47 AM

The way the dr explained it to me was like this: there is an outer covering on your arteries, like a sock, that constricts, therefore the blood does not circulate as it should. They went in and took the "sock" off of the area of the artery where it enters and exits my hand (on my wrist) and in my palm where it branches off to each finger. Looking forward to a less painful winter!

Hugs,
Lisa
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#7 erika

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 11:07 PM

Me too: I never really understood what this sympa.....whatever represents. Was afraid to ask but taught that it was some kind of amputation. :VeryHappy: Not even similar!
Now I can see on the pictures (for which I thank you) and from your posts that this is not such a big deal as I thought. The major "scarf" on the pictures is from the black thread and violet pencil marks. After it heals it will be almost invisible.
Good luck.
Erika

#8 Purr

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 10:33 AM

That's great Lisa. My rheumatologist talked to me about that surgery about this time last year. And for my right hand, too. The Raynaud's hasn't reached ulcer stage but I have a lot of trouble with dryness and cracking (on the right hand). She thought it would be good to stay ahead of the problems. One of my "big" concerns is cost. Medicare is my only insurance until I'm 65 unless I want to pay $600 a month. Indiana doesn't require insurance companies to have supplemental insurance for people with disability between 62 and 65. There's only 1 company that does. Oh well. My Raynaud's just keeps getting worse all of time so I really like the sounds of it. I certainly hope it does a lot for you!! :)

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#9 LisaBulman

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 01:06 PM

Hi Chris,
I would highly reccomend the surgery if you can afford it! Wouldn't medicare cover the surgery except the inpatient deductible? Today I was outside in the early evening and it was gettting a little chilly. I looked down at my hands and my left hand was blue, from the wrist to the finger tips. My right hand was pink with just two little spots that started to change which was closer to my palm near my pinky finger. I couln't believe it! I wished I had my camera!!

Hugs,
Lisa
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#10 enjoytheride

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 03:09 PM

Congratulations of the success- it's great news.

#11 Sweet

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 03:49 AM

Oh Lisa, this is great!
Warm and gentle hugs,

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#12 Purr

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 09:39 AM

I forgot to ask what doctor does the surgery? I should know but can't remember.
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#13 Patty Arche-Hueck

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 11:08 AM

Oh that is great!!! good pics,congratsPosted Image

#14 LisaBulman

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 01:02 AM

Purr, the doctor who did mine was an orthopedic hand surgeon. He had already done numerous surgeries of the same type before.

Hugs,
Lisa
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