Had surgery on Tues.

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Julie08
Posts: 103
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 10:14 pm

Had surgery on Tues.

#1 Post by Julie08 »

I had surgery Tues. morning to advance my lower jaw. It went very well, only took 1.5 hours instead of the 2 hours it usually takes my surgeon. Extremely minimal blood loss. Excellent results.

I was very nauseated that first day. My throat hurt that first day (from tubes) but that went away as soon as I was able to start drinking water. Other than the nausea, I was fine (as I guess I was still under the effects of anesthetic and the swelling had not begun). The nausea got much better that night and was mostly gone the next day.

The day after surgery I was swollen but feeling pretty good. I just wanted to go home (and was released from the hospital mid-afternoon). Most of the swelling was in the bottom part of my face, so I looked kind of square-headed. I looked like Spongebob Squarepants long-lost twin sister. The swelling might not have become so bad if I would have been able to get ice for my icepacks and keep them applied to my face, but the hospital I was in had a day-time nursing staff that had some very bad attitudes, (but that's another story). Night shift was so much better, but by then, I'd already missed the opportunity to apply ice early/often to minimize swelling.

Yesterday (day 3) I became VERY swollen. I looked like a baboon, because the swelling traveled up my cheeks. I am only taking the pain meds (percocet) at night.

I am starting to feel the soreness - in my cheeks, inside my mouth. I would not call it pain, just soreness. It is quite bearable. Actually, I'm glad to feel it, because I was most worried about permanent numbness. My chin is completely numb and my lower lip is for the most part, but I feel a little flutter on my lower lip every once in awhile, kind of like a butterly is lighting there for a moment. My cheeks definitely have feeling, they are stretched and taut from swelling and have a slight burning sensation (don't think I've read anyone had that before, I'm going to ask the surgeon about that at my appointment today).

I would be miserable and worried about the swelling right now if it weren't for this board and all of you sharing information and photos (sorry, I don't have any) - it has provided a lot of reassurance. I appreciate it very much!

I am hoping bulk of swelling will dissipate in a week or two.

All that said - I'm glad I did this - not the least bit sorry about it. If I can feel that way at the height of the swelling, I know it was the right choice.

Anyone having surgery coming up soon - hang in there. It was not as bad as expected and it is nice to be on the other side of it!
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Thathrill
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#2 Post by Thathrill »

welcome to the other side. I also thought the pain after surgery would be a lot worse. i never thought the elastics would be very painful tho but over all things are well. i am glad you are happy with your decision. I do not have any regrets either.
Last edited by Thathrill on Sun Aug 17, 2008 12:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Brace date: 5/2/2007
Debanding date: 1/14/2009
Ceramic Braces: 20 months
Currently in clear Essix retainers at night

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phil
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#3 Post by phil »

Julie,

You made it! And you seem that you are in good spirits, with a good sense of humor. That alone will take you far.

You are well past the worst of the swelling. Moist heat for comfort at this point will work better than ice, which is best used for the first three days.

Many people have taken Bromelain, had lymphatic drainage, and used Arnica for swelling. Maybe we should have a "swelling sticky" at the top of the forum too! I took (and still take religiously) Omega-3 every day, which supposedly is good for swelling and inflammation.

All of those strange feelings in your face are perfectly normal--the nerves are waking back up, and repairing and rebuilding. Every time you have one of those quirky feelings, just thank your body for the wonderful job that it's doing of healing you!

If you have any more questions about anything along the way, this is a good place to ask.

Be well, and at peace,

Phil
There are no ordinary moments.
Check out my blog! http://pcadams.wordpress.com/

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Munkys Girl
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Location: Teesside, UK Girlfriend to: a Lefort 1 & BSSO patient!

#4 Post by Munkys Girl »

Thanks for sharing your story! Good luck with the recovery, let us know how you get on. :D

ema27
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Location: uk

#5 Post by ema27 »

hi julie08-i have just had lower jaw surgery this friday-my surgery was the advance the lower jaw then genioplasty.The surgeon said it would take 4-5 it actually took 8-so your 1 1/2 hours was amazing..
Are you banded shut...i am for at least 4 days when i next see the surgeon.eating is hard i am starving... and talking is difficult.
My god i look like a baboon!! so dont worry your feelings are the same i am experiencing...I keep getting pins and needles and itchiness-no regrets yet either but i am sore and already getting fed up...
hope your recovery is a smooth one..good luck...
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Julie08
Posts: 103
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 10:14 pm

Update

#6 Post by Julie08 »

Thanks for the replies and encouragement!

I'm doing well. The last couple of days I have seen a lot of progress. A lot of the swelling has dissipated and the bruises are starting to clear up. My energy is really returning.

To answer the question posed, I originally had a splint that was removed after 3 days, and was fairly tightly banded with elastics for the first week after surgery. To give you an idea, I could not get a child-sized toothbrush in my mouth to brush. The bands were up in the front of my mouth so I could not stick my tongue out. This is probably standard, I'm just mentioning it because we all probably have a different perception about what "tightly banded" means. As of my appt. yesterday, I got slightly looser rubber bands and can now (with difficulty and a bit of stretching) brush with the child-size toothbrush fairly well. It also is easier to eat now.

I'm on foods the consistency of mashed potatoes or thinner. I think that will be the case for 3 more weeks or so. I'm having yogurt, jello, coffee, tea, instant mashed potatoes of every flavor available, soup, ice cream, and milk shakes that I put peanut butter in for protein. Or I'll add a banana (I discovered 1/2 banana is enough. A whole banana is way too banana-ee for one milkshake fyi, for anyone who has not tried this yet). Like some others have mentioned, I don't want to blend foods like pizza, meat, etc. The thought of it makes me gag.


Again, thanks for your well wishes! I've been grateful for this board and all the information contained here. It helps to know what to expect. I'm glad to report an ordinary experience and that it was not bad at all. If you have had kidney stones, migraine headaches, or had a difficult labor giving birth, this type of surgery will pretty much be a walk in the park for you compared to those things!
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iBorg
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#7 Post by iBorg »

Congrats on making it to the other side. I agree with Phil that those tings and flutters are a good thing. As I understand it (I'm still waiting on assurance approval) that every little pain is the nerve stretching it wings and getting ready to give you full feeling back. My standard wish is that you'll spill something down your cheek and feel EVERY small drop of it.

Mike
I wore braces (this time) for 1294 days or 3 years, 6 months and 17 days.
But who's counting?
Jaw Surgery June 1, 2009
Thanks for praying for me and thinking happy thoughts.

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phil
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#8 Post by phil »

Julie,

I second Mike's wish for you! :wink:

I love how you frame your surgery in regards to pain. I have had a kidney stone, and I concur. However, I will NOT be giving any opinions about childbirth for obvious reasons!

:lol:

Be well, and at peace,

Phil
There are no ordinary moments.
Check out my blog! http://pcadams.wordpress.com/

Julie08
Posts: 103
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 10:14 pm

Update to Surgery on July 29

#9 Post by Julie08 »

My recovery from surgery is going well. I got the rubberbands off last Friday. The swelling is gone, the bruising is mostly gone (just a little remaining on my chest). Other than my chin and lower lip still being numb and still being allowed to eat only non-chewable foods (mashed potatoes or thinner), I'm back to normal. Hopefully by the end of the month I'll be allowed soft-chew foods.

The best news is the ortho said the surgeon nailed the surgery so well that if the results remain stable, only a little tweaking remains with the braces - and I may have them off before Christmas. What a great Christmas present that would be!

Since my teeth are so prematurely worn, I will need crowns on the back molars and will have veneers or some bonding or something done in the front, so there will be more work to do after the braces are off. But it is still nice to be nearing that stage where the major part of the work is complete and just the cosmetic improvements need to be done.

It's been two years now . . . but it was a fast two years.
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phil
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#10 Post by phil »

Julie,

Congratulations on your good news. It's so good to hear that the end is in sight for you. It's a wonderful feeling, isn't it? :)

Be well, and at peace,

Phil
There are no ordinary moments.
Check out my blog! http://pcadams.wordpress.com/

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