Ain't Technology Grand?
I'm looking good!
Or so Dr. Balderston says. He pulled the remainder of the surgical tape off the abdominal incision and it doesn't look as bad as I thought it would. He says it's still somewhat swollen, and I can attest to the fact that it is still very sore to the touch. Those red marks on the sides are bruises from when the surgical tape was on and I had the distention problem, causing blisters to form under the tape. Ugh.
He was really impressed with my walking regimen, but didn't give me permission to do anything more than that at least until I see him again in another six weeks. I am allowed to begin doing some upper body work, mostly arms and shoulders (no lat pulldowns, chest or pec work for now), with five pound weights (he started at three pounds, but I got him up to five, ha!). I'm also allowed to start moving my body into different positions, like mild twisting, and I'm permitted to lift and carry up to fifteen pounds. But no bending yet.
I asked him about my still throbbing legs, he said it will go away as I become more used to walking upright (ha, soon I'll be using tools just like a human!). Apparently all my feverish stationary bicycle riding and swimming don't use the same muscles as good old-fashioned walking.
As you can see from the xrays, (click on the images to see them larger)he didn't take out the old rods; there was so much bone grown over them that he said it would have been a much more painful recovery for me. What they did do was cut the rods and reposition them so that my shoulders and thoracic region are now above my pelvis, and not pitching forward (compare to this). The first little red arrow in the xray on the right is where they cut the rod, the second points out the L3-4 fusion with small metal cage and screw, the third arrow points to the ProDisc at L5-S1.
Ain't technology grand?