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Surgery Recovery & Pots


suziebear
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Hi,

So I am looking at having elective surgery done in about 3 weeks. Is something I have wanted for years and would really like to go ahead.

BUT...

How is the surgery going to effect my POTS in particular the aneasthetic and the recovery period?

I am stressing about it and just need to hear stories....

Thanks

Susan

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i was really worried like you are, when i was scheduled to get my tonsils/adenoids removed. i was put under general, and actually that was the best part. they said my bp and pulse did well. before hand i had my compression hoes on. after in recovery my bp did drop a bit because i was put on morphine, but the lowest was 80/50. ( not too bad). the worst was when i went home because the pain meds did drop my bp for the week i was on them. but i also didnt get nearly enough fluids because my throat hurt so bad! it took about 3 weeks till my POTS was stable again. however i did push myself. i walked around my house a lot and forced myself to get up at least on the sofa so i was not laying flat the whole time.

good luck! im sure you will do fine! <_<

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Hi Susan -

I have had several major surgeries over the past years - while I didn't know I had POT's - I knew I had Addison's and the hospital was made aware of this and took special precautions before, during and after the actual surgery with my BP.

So just be sure that they are aware of your condition - I have learned the hard way - that just because your doctor is aware - doesn't mean that it makes it on your chart - we have to make sure that our conditions are known to the nurses and to the anesthesiologist -

I have to be honest - recovery periods have always been longer than normal but I have other conditions that complicate matters.

But I am sure that if you listen to your doctors - and follow instructions - you will do just fine!! <_<

Best of luck!!

Terry Lynne

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I had knee surgery this past November, before I had a diagnosis. Because I was having so many knee problems, I wasn't very active before surgery, and because it hurt and my knee was so unstable afterwards I had trouble being active afterwards, too. I did have an increase in my symptoms, but I'm sure if I knew about the importance of staying hydrated and keeping electrolytes balanced, I probably wouldn't have had such a difficult time with the postural tachycardia and lightheadedness. I was able to keep my pain fairly well controlled with not taking as much pain medicine as I was prescribed by using ice packs and breathing exercises (I've had trouble with shortness of breath, especially with the percocet). It did take me longer to recover from this surgery than the one I had on my other knee back in Dec of 08, because the POTS was more active this last time around, but it wasn't a horrible recovery.

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Unfortunately I've had 2 surgeries in the past 2 years (one major, one relatively minor, both with general anesthetic) and had major POTS flares each time. The first one, I expected to be out from work 4-6 weeks post-op and ended up being out more than 10 weeks and starting on about 4 new meds to be functional. (Didn't know it was POTS at the time.) The second surgery (minor) I had in July 2009 and still haven't gotten back to work yet. I'm just now starting to feel like it might be a possibility in the near future. (I have a very physically active job.)

Don't mean to be a kill-joy but at this point my mantra is I'M NEVER HAVING SURGERY EVER AGAIN!!!!! :)

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I had major surgery and a surgeon who did not believe in chronic fatigue syndrome / pots etc etc. I did warn them all, before hand but got ignored. Two days after surgery my haemoglobin dropped to 3 and I had an emergency transfusion and got an apology from the surgeon. So, my advice, is to make sure they really are fully aware of your condition.

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My daughter did not have POTS prior to her initial surgery in July 08. Following the surgery, she developed what I would now call minor POTS symptoms, although we didn't realize it at the time. After further surgery in April 09, her POTS symptoms came on full force. She is due for more surgery in May of this year, and I can only hope that her symptoms don't get even worse than they currently are.

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I've had multiple major surgeries, as well as some more minor ones under general anesthesia. I have never had trouble with recovery other than what many here have already mentioned: my recovery took a bit longer than a more "normal" person.

The basics apply: follow recovery instructions from the doctor. Do NOT overdo it, push yourself too hard, or do anything that's on the list they give you to avoid. That being said, don't use having autonomic problems as an excuse not to work step by step toward getting better, which usually means getting out of bed when you're supposed to do some light exercise like walking around the house, bathing, etc... and rest when you body insists it's done, but with the notion that when you feel rested, you'll try it all again.

:rolleyes:

Nina

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I've never done well with surgery. My blood pressure always crashes and I always have a period of refractory tachycardia afterwards. I'm not sure if it's EDS or POTS, but I suspect it's somehow hereditary because my grandmother's heart would stop whenever she had general anesthesia.

When I had a 45 min. surgery to remove endometriosis it took three shots of ephedrine to keep my blood pressure at a normal level. It's something to do with the gas and the fact that for some reason I can't maintain sufficient blood pressure with a lot of help. My recovery time was a little longer and I had a nice hideous scar (thanks EDS).

As far as I can tell people have wildly different experiences under general anesthesia depending on what kind of autonomic dysfunction they have.

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