It's "Back Again" September 22, 2015

A Small Corner On The Internet Dedicated To Our Family & Friends

It's Been Twelve Years Since The Original Back Surgery (2003)

Sue's back has been in severe pain for the past 18 months and we have been to pain management specialist, chiropractors, you name it.  Finally we decided to change our approach and have of GP recommend a course of action.

We met Dr. Yuan and his assistant. It was a very good meeting. They took their own x-ray and determined the screws were loose.


He found a potential problem on the first visit! Wow!

He did and after a CT scan, we found out that several of the original screws in her back (she had 28 put in originally) have worked loose and two were actually extended into the spinal column. The surgeon was REALLY worried about the effects. While we do not know for sure if this screw is causing the pain, it has to be removed in any event.

Did You Know? - QCT was invented at University of California San Francisco (UCSF) during the 1970s.

Quantitative computed tomography (QCT) is a medical technique that measures bone mineral density (BMD) using a standard X-ray Computed Tomography (CT) scanner with a calibration standard to convert Hounsfield Units (HU) of the CT image to bone mineral density values. Quantitative CT scans are primarily used to evaluate bone mineral density at the lumbar spine and hip.

In general, solid phantoms placed in a pad under the patient during CT image acquisition are used for calibration. These phantoms contain materials that represent a number of different equivalent bone mineral densities. Usually either Calcium Hydroxyapatite (CaHAP) or Potassium Phosphate (K2HPO4) are used as the reference standard.

The Operation

We departed the house at 6:00 to get to Long Beach Memorial at 6:30.


The sun was just coming up

Check-in was pretty easy but parking was "interesting" at best. A few minutes after arriving the text messages began to come in with best wishes. Greg showed up and sat with us for a while. Soon after Irene joined us. Sue was called into the pre-op and all went well but then the doctor was asked to "assist" so we were an hour late getting started.


No lipstick was allowed in the OR

The operation began at 9:30 and was over by 10:30.


The screws came out easily

We had friends with us! Greg and Irene joined Jan and Brian!


Jan and Irene


Brian and Greg

The doctor came out and we all jumped up!  He said he removed seven screws and some of then could by pulled out by hand!  Sue went through everything like a trooper and would soon be in recovery!  She was in recovery for several hours awaiting a room!
Sue got to the room about 5:00 and Irene and Paul visited.  Greg had departed to help David and Jan and Brian needed to miss the late afternoon traffic!

She was a but groggy... Duh!... So Paul headed for home about 6:00 and returned at 8:00 and stayed until about 10:00... By then we were all tired!

When Paul got home he knew our dear friends and neighbors Vicky and Del had been there because we had a blue candle in our walkway... Prayers for Sue and the Doctor and his staff!

Coming Home

She came home the next day about 3:00. Of course we stopped by Main Street to have some wine before going home!

Thursday morning... No sharp pains. Just the dull pains from the operation!

We are planning to go dancing tonight (perhaps with only a few slow dances).


Loads of staples keep her together!