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Eos

digital sympathectomy

17 posts in this topic

Hi,

so my doctor wins and I am having a symtpathectomy done. Right hand, wrist, fingers..... :temper-tantrum: how will I even be able to uhm.... clean my own behind? I am right handed.

Anyone had these? How long did it take to have a usable hand ? Hows the pain level? :emoticon-bang-head:

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Hi Eos,

I am so sorry to hear that you are about to have to do this. Have you tried Cialis or Viagra? I just told a friend here in Texas to ask her doctor about it. She was about to have three fingers amputated because of gangrene. She got on Cialis and within a few days her fingers were beginning to turn pink.

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Hi Eos ,

 

As a right hander, who broke her right elbow as a teenager, trust me, your left hand knows how to function, too!!! The brain is the most powerful organ in your body....it will compensate!!!

 

Take care, Everyone.

Margaret

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Hi Eos

 

Sorry, I can't help, first I've ever heard of this procedure but I want to wish you good luck with your surgery. Is it already scheduled for you?


Sending good wishes your way!

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Hey,

 

May I say OUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHIIIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEE!!! I sure hope all goes well.

Let us know! I'll send good thoughts your way!

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Hi Eos ,

 

When I first read your message, I thought you were having the surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome. After reading the responses, I'm not sure what your surgery is but I apologize for taking it so lightly. I thought you'd be "up and at 'em" fairly quickly. What is the surgery for?

 

Take care, Everyone.

Margaret

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Hello Margaret

 

It's a digital sympathectomy that EOS is going to have done. It's a treatment used for Raynaud's.

 

Please know you don't need to apologise you are among friends afterall.

 

Take care.


Amanda Thorpe

ISN Sclero Forums Senior Support Specialist

ISN Video Presentations Manager

ISN Blogger

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

(Retired) ISN Email Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Hi,

yes its for some nasty severe Raynaud's. I tried a bunch of meds... seems like they dont help or they help abit but the side effect kill me. My one finger is blue all the time, and painful.

I need to function and all these meds make me more tired and dizzy and groggy. I work at least 8 hours at work in a high pressure and demanding job.... I need to function and have an AWAKE brain. lol. :temper-tantrum:

 

thanx guys!

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Eos,

Sorry to hear that meds didn't help you. Below is a reply that I made to your original post dated in July. I re-posted it here for others to easily see.

 

To answer your questions:

>> Anyone had these?

See below.

 

>> How long did it take to have a usable hand ?

After the wound heals you can begin using it. If I remember correctly, stitches stay in for ~10 days.

 

>> Hows the pain level?

It wasn't bad, but after suffering from ulcers, I have a high tolerance for pain.

 

===========

Posted 31 July 2009 - 06:52 PM

 

Eos,

 

I have severe Raynauds and CREST/Limited SD. I too have had the 'rubber band/finger tip blue' symptom as you described. For me, it occurred for four different fingers at four different times - two fingers on one hand, another two fingers on the other hand. Each time I experienced the problem, my rheumatologist/hand surgeon admitted me into the hospital. In my case, I was put on Heparin (IV blood thinner) for one week. The Heparin never helped, so it was advised that I have a sympathecomy for the finger that was giving me the trouble. I listened and I'm grateful I did - even though it's said that a sympathecomy is a short-term solution. My fingers were saved. I have had a total of five sympathecomies - four for the fingers I described above (performed in 1998 - 1999) and one for all the fingers on my right hand (performed in 2004). Unfortunately, because the vessels are so damaged from the SD/Raynauds, the last surgery was unsuccessful and I was told that I had to move to a warmer climate. By unsuccessful, I mean, the surgeon couldn't do anything to increase the circulation. I have to make sure I don't get cold or have any stress.

 

Remember every SD/Raynauds case is different. I would suggest that you don't go too long with the symptoms you described and contact your doctor again.

 

If you or anyone reading this post would like to PM me, I'll be more than happy to answer any questions.

Hope you feel better very soon. I know how painful your finger is.

 

Regards,

JBG

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Sorry to hear you are suffering so much with your fingers EOS. I have stuggled like most here with raynauds in my hands and feet. I recently saw a rhumetologist, specializing in the field of scleroderma at the Univeristy of Washington medical center in Dec. She put me on viagra and it has changed my life for the better. I haven't had to open a hand warmer packet since the day I got the pills. I still carry gloves and mittens with me, but I don't have to live in them. My hands used to go all white if I took off a mitten long enought to unlock my car door. The pills are expensive, but so far I can take a half a pill 3 times a day and be relatively comfortable.

 

What you are going through is my biggest fear with raynauds, I hope you are better soon.

 

Connie :fairy:

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Hi EOS,

 

Is your surgery scheduled? This is not my forte', but would a second opinion be in order?

 

When it comes to things of this nature, I would be well-versed as to my options...if any.

I sympathize with you...

I have a very dear freind who had several digits amputated. However, she was diagnosed with diffuse SD years ago, so the knowledge of Scleroderma wasn't well known at that time.

 

Should you have no other recourse, then I would expect that you would be given medication that would alleviate the pain...for post-surgery. As far as hand adaption...I had to learn to adapt the same and it really went better than I thought it would.

 

In the meantime, please keep us posted.


Special Hugs,

 

Susie Kraft

ISN Support Specialist

ISN Chat Host

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Hello Eos, I had sympathectomies done, however, mine were radial and ulnar sympathectomies which are located in the wrists. As a result I have two unsightly vertical scars on each wrist. I am not bothered in the least by them because they have given me great relief from almost continual Raynauds. My hands were never warm and the severe attacks came on with such little provocation so frequently that something had to be done.

The surgery was done by a hand and wrist surgeon recommended by my rheumatologist. I met with him several times which I feel was crucial to the successful outcome. I had one hand done at a time and yes, you will manage with your "other" hand. I still have Raynauds but, I no longer have severe attacks daily, when I do have an attack the severity is much less and I recover much faster. I do not regret my decision. Best of luck to you! emmie

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Hi:

I had a left hand sympathectomy March 2009 -and I'm left-handed. (The surgeon also did carpal tunnel at the same time.)

It did help restore circulation to a badly eroded finger although I know it's not a permanent cure.

And I didn't know I had CREST then either.

Your other hand will suddenly become very adept and take over when you need to. The pain was very manageable and I thought the headache from the anesthesia was worse than the hand.

The hardest part for me was trying to grip a hairbrush. Fortunately I had anticipated some problems and had my hair trimmed before the operation.

Physical therapy helped a lot after my hand was healed.

Best wishes.


Kay Tee

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I have had digital sympathectomies on both hands all finger, one hand then 8 months later other. This procedure was done after having multiple painful ulcers on multiple fingers, one ulcer on my right index resulted in an amputation of half the index finger.Both were done in 05. But I have to say since these sympathectomies I have not had one ulcer. My fingers especially on left hand still turn blue/purple when cold but no ulcers. Prior to the surgeries I tried many medications with no positive effect. I had the procedure done by an Orthopedic sugeon who specialzed in hand surgery. What is done is they expose the little vessel that goes to each finger and peel off the outer layer, so that that vessel can hopefully then expand allowing more blood flow, The pain after the surgery was tolerable with pain meds.Good Luck! I hope all goes well! Patty

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I am contemplating a digital sympathectomy for the ones who have had this surgery done can you recomend a specialist for this?

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Hi EOS

 

Just wanted to wish you good luck for your op and a very speedy recovery. I have suffered with Raynauds most of my life or certainly for as long as I can remember, (I am 52 now) luckily to date I have not suffered from any ulcers, but I guess as things progress I will have all this to look forward to!

 

Let us know how you get on, will be watching this space for updates of your recovery.

 

You take care

 

Sandy B

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