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Spinal Cord Complications With Lung Cancer

By Melissa Waller
 
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Today I still have no answers regarding the spinal cord compression. My friend Erika spent the night last night to keep me company and we were both woken early this am by a new doctor!

He started talking and I groggily interrupted and asked who he was. He explained that he was a neurologist, Dr. Gonzalaz ... and I think that’s pretty much the gist of what I understood. He went on to say that he thought surgery was a bad idea and I should continue with radiation. I was really confused and still a little slow from the little night’s sleep that I had. He asked who the other doc was that originally performed the vertebrowplasty surgery, made some comments, and then left the room.

About an hour later, the hottie neurologist from yesterday came to the room followed by the internal med team including, Dr. Wollet. The hottie doc spoke up and said that there has been a lot of confusion and communication that is not streamlined (really?) and that we need to wait until Monday to get answers from D. Dickman with Barrows Neurological Institute. Hottie doc explained that Dickman is out of town and he would be back Monda, but that Dickman is recognized as one of the best thoracic spine surgeons around. They also wanted to wait to speak with Dr. Brockman, the radiologist who initially brought this to attention (I am also receiving radiation from his group).

The hottie doctor explained that there are risks to the surgery including: spinal cord drainage, CSF leak, deformity of spine, or injury that could lead to another procedure of the spine. These are the minor risks, while others include: paralysis, coma, or even DEATH. In addition, the spinal surgery options are progressive procedures, so we need to be reasonably certain that the surgery benefit will outweigh the risks.

Fast forward. I am now off the blood thinner Coumadin. I am still taking the blood thinner shots daily to keep from getting a blood clot. However; now I get to wear fancy compression wraps around my calves while I sleep at night. They are hooked up to a machine and they take turns squeezing my legs all night long.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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