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RPLND Recovery time

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  • Mizu
    replied
    Re: the original question - I had my surgery on 3/3 and started flying again on 5/2 - 2 months later, with some longs flights (NYC to Phoenix week 1, NYC - Istanbul - Sofia and back on week 2 & 3). It worked well, but I upgraded on all but 2 segments, which helped. I had to be extra careful with the carryons - lifting them to the overhead bin may be asking for trouble.

    Best

    Michael

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  • Scott
    replied
    I can only think of a pro: a less obvious scar. Are there any cons?

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  • toomoody
    replied
    I just talked to Dr. Sheinfeld's office and they said that they sometimes do plastics closures when requested by the patient and when the patient is not carrying a lot of weight around the mid-section. I'm pretty thin so she said he could do such a closure if i requested it. Any thoughts on whether I should? I'm leaning toward doing that to have a smaller scar and avoid the whole staple ordeal.

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  • toomoody
    replied
    as Neon mentioned, the advertised benefit is a lesser scar.

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  • Kev332
    replied
    Check out this thread: RPLND Scar where we talk about stitches, staples, etc...

    As I said in that thread, I did not have staples or external sutures. My surgeon only used internal sutures only for my RPLND and I am very thankful for that. My scar looks really good!. Ask your surgeon if he would be able to do that and I'm sure you will be very happy with the results.

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  • Neon
    replied
    I had staples, and split pretty bad when they were removed - not to mention they hurt coming out!. My I/O had internal sutures, and they seemed to take FOREVER to get anywhere near normal. I was pulling thread out of the incision area for a year as the sutures worked their way to the surface.
    What are the advertised benefits of sutures, out of curiousity?

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  • toomoody
    replied
    Thanks guys for the advice. I guess I'll wait until after the surgery to decide on the wedding. The flight would basically be 3 hours, with some sort of layover in the middle of it (NYC to Gainesville, FL via Atlanta or Charlotte). While I'm here, what are your thoughts on staples vs. sutures for the RPLND? I've read a few people's stories who said their surgeons did the sutures and that they are greatful for it now. I haven't broached the subject yet with Dr. Sheinfeld, but wondered what the benefits of the staples would be over the sutures.

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  • Kev332
    replied
    Toomoody,

    I would play it by ear as to how you feel regarding heading to a wedding that quick after surgery. Everyone recovers at their own pace.. I too had some bowel issues after my RPLND and had to be re-admitted to the hospital for another 6 days after I initially went home from the surgery.. Even though the best thing for you to do after the surgery is to get up and walk around, you also have to let your body heal.

    Hope all goes well.

    -Kevin

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  • Scott
    replied
    Neon, I bet that incision looks a lot different today than in the picture with all the staples.

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  • Neon
    replied
    I had my surgery on 10-14-2004, and my fiancee flew up to Indianapolis on the 21st to accompany me home back to Florida on the 22nd. I was pretty doped out for the two hour flight, and we got there plenty early to get a bulkhead seat so I could stretch out. It was a late night flight, and went by in a blur. Hint - take the drugs they gave you - they are there for a good reason. Don't be a hero and decide to skip a pain pill, you don't realize how well they are working until they wear off and then it takes hours to get back under control. Trust me!
    I was out of work exactly 6 weeks. It basically sucked going back to work - I really could have used a few more days, but I managed. The first day putting on jeans was really excruciating, the button did a number on my incision. I still wonder if my intestines were packed in the exact way, they felt a little lumpier after the operation. Dr. Foster did a great job, though.
    Oddly enough, the RPLND pain was never as bad as the I/O. Don't get me wrong, there was plenty of pain, but managed with drugs. The I/O was bloody intense pain and I was expecting that level of pain from the RPLND but happily it never occured. Its a more spread out type of pain I guess. The abdominal stiffness took months to get over, never thought I would stand up straight again but I did.
    Luckily I had a fiancee who put up with my whole ordeal (friends for 20 years), and we were married a few months later! Life is great, just keeping up with the surveillance and enjoying the recent addition of 5g of testosterone. Yeah baby! Here are a few pics from my ordeal.






    Glad to hear your second CT was negative. Take care and best of luck.

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  • Fish
    replied
    You might be pushing it trying to travel 19 days after you surgery, but by 6 weeks you should be doing fine. It can take up to 6 months to completely regain all of your strength and endurance. You will want to be very careful not to put stress on your incision, as it can cause a hernia. I had to move to a new apartment about 4 weeks after my RPLND in 1988 and too much lifting caused me to get a hernia - the repair was worse the the original surgery, so be careful. Walking is a great thing to do and will help keep your lungs clear of fluids and get your intestines functioning. They'll get you up and around in the hospital ASAP after surgery.

    Best of luck

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  • indiana9
    replied
    Dear Toomoody,
    I had a baseball sized residual tumor removed at the IU medical center via RPLND on W, 3/29. The morphine IV was removed from my neck on TH afternoon and I was switched to oral pain medicine. I had my first solid food on TH evening. My catheter was removed on Friday morning and a suppository was inserted into my rear end to help me with my first post surgery BM which happened around 1:00 p.m. on Friday. I was then released from the hospital later in the afternoon on F, 3/31 (2 days after surgery) and returned full time to a management job on Monday, 4/17; 19 days after surgery. I did not feel much pain as long as I was laying down and also not so bad while walking, but going from lying down to standing up was pretty painful the first week following surgery. I also wore jogging pants to work the first week because I was very sore still around my naval and swollen around my midsection and eased back into my dockers during my second week back to work. I flew from Indianapolis to Wilkes Barre, PA on 4/23. I would encourage you to get out of bed as soon as possible after surgery and do a little walking around the hospital corridors. I am 49 years old. Good luck, I bet you will do great!
    Brian

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  • nzsteve
    replied
    Hi,

    I'd say youre probably best not to make any definate plans for the wedding until you get out of hospital. If everything goes well you might be OK - out of hospital 3 days after surgery gives you a couple of weeks to judge how youre doing.

    I had some bowel problems after my RPLND, and spent 10 days in hospital. The car ride home, 30mins or so, was terrible - every bumb, stop, start felt like hell. After that the improvement was steady. I was back at work 6 weeks after the surgery date. How long is your flight going to be? I had to keep moving after mine - couldnt stay sitting in the same position for long periods, so I dont think the flying would have been possible. But as I say, mine wasnt a 3 day in and out surgery, so I guess it should be possible if things went smoothly.

    When you get overseas Id find a local doctor ASAP, even if you feel good, and update them on your history. At least that way if things do go bad youll have someone you can goto. Im not sure where youre heading, but Im from the UK originally, and I know from experiance that finding a GP and getting an appointment inside 2 weeks can be a right pain in the butt!

    Other than that good luck. I'm sure youre in good hands with the guys at MSK.

    Steve

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  • toomoody
    started a topic RPLND Recovery time

    RPLND Recovery time

    I introduced myself the other day here. Good news is that my second CT scan came back negative and so chemo before the RPLND is out of the picture. I am going to have the RPLND by Dr. Sheinfeld and am scheduled for July 17, although they are going to try to bump me up to the week before (either 7/12 or 7/14) if they can. As I wrote earlier, I am hoping to go study abroad in a program that begins Sept 1 and Dr. Sheinfeld said this shouldn't be a problem. I'm also now hoping to be able to fly home to Florida from NY on August 4 to attend a wedding on the 5th. I'm wondering what all of your recoveries were like in terms of the time table. Is it unreasonable to try to make it to the wedding just 19 days after surgery? How quickly after surgery did you all fly? Any problems riding in a car for a few hours? Are there any residual issues after the surgery that could come up when I am oversees (6 weeks after the surgery)?
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