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Monday, August 29, 2011

Sproing!

Not an actual demonstration of what I did
Last Monday morning of August. I arrive at work, make myself a coffee and sit myself down in front of the computer. I start checking emails and at some point feel the urge to stretch. Arrms up, back arched and....SPROING!!! I feel a popping/tear/bolt of pain inside my abdomen in the area of my larger incision. Awesome.

Hours later it is still panging. I've felt around, there isnt a bump or anything (which might indicate a hernia*). I've probably just pulled something. This is the first time since the week of my kidney donation surgery that I've had constant (albeit insignificant) pain in the abdomen.It's just another reminder: I had major abdominal surgery.

My recovery has been good. I think I'm on track in terms of reintroducing activities into my life. I can do just about everything I could before the surgery, and some things better because I am now in better shape. The one area where I still feel behind though is abdominal strength. It just isn't there anymore. My right side has a little but my left side is so fail it seems to negate anything my right side attempts. There are fleeting moments of ever-so-slight improvements in strength. I dont rally notice the weekness in day to day activity but I do in exercising whether I'm doing exercises that directly target the abs or those that rely on core strenth.

Why is this? The internal incision areas themselves can take 4-8 weeks to heal. Nerves, muscles, skin and other tissues heal at different rates, so its normal to have some pain pang, numbness, feelings of pulling etc spread out over a couple months. Healing is not a straight curve, but  a series of  ups and downs in which one type of scar tissue forms, then dissolves and another type forms. While these stages occur, that new tissue is vulnerable to damage.

Skin numbness and burning are also common in a nerve healing stage. I read that nerves regenerate around your incision at the rate of about an inch a month Also not all abdominal sensations from cut nerves go away, even with time. So the bottom line is this: A surgical patient has at least two months of healing to do and it isn't uncommon to still be feeling the healing process up to 6 months after.

After a surgery like laproscopic kidney donation, a person can expect to go through these tissue healing stages for at least two months, and it takes six months to a year to reach maximal healing. So given that I am 11 weeks post surgery, I am thinking my experience is pretty darn normal. While that won't help the pain I have right now as a result of the SPROING or make me feel better when I can't plank at bootcamp. it is good to know what to expect.


*Obviously if the pain continues or gets worse I will go see a doctor-it is never a good idea to diagnose yourself, even if you are a doctor (which I'm not) or rely on Dr. Google or his partner Dr. Internet. When in doubt, call a real doctor and get checked out.

1 comment:

  1. I should have known it was Kermit's fault!

    ReplyDelete