Recovery from surgery

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by amzi, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. amzi

    amzi Forte User

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    I've asked a couple of health elated questions on the forum in the last couple of years, and here's another one. I underwent a gastric sleeve procedure a week ago, however at the time of the surgery my surgeon discovered a huge (his word) hiatal hernia that he had to repair before accomplishing the gastric sleeve. He also encountered significant adhesions that had to be dealt with. So I awoke after a 2 hour surgery with no recovery plan. My question is--how long after the surgery should I wait before I begin playing again? Thanks in advance for your help. By the way, my surgeon is of no real assistance in this decision since he believe that playing the trumpet involves forcing air into the stomach.
     
  2. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Our tame doctors will hopefully chime in with a real answer, just don't believe the one that promotes baggy pants when it comes to trousers.
     
  3. amzi

    amzi Forte User

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    After the help from the forum I was pretty well set on a plan of action; but since the hiatial hernia involved the diaphragm I have some real reservations. And with my surgeons obvious unfamiliarity with the mechanics of playing a trumpet I am concerned he will just throw out an ultra conservative figure like 6 months and I will have no contrary information to consider.
     
  4. TrumpetMD

    TrumpetMD Fortissimo User

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    This is a fair concern.

    Take the opportunity to education him/her.

    From a metabolic standpoint, playing the trumpet is a moderate activity, similar to a brisk walk or bike ride. From an exertional standpoint, playing the trumpet is similar to working out with a moderate amount of free weights, maybe 10 to 20 pound weights.

    Of course, these are just general guidelines. There's a big difference between soft long tones and playing lead for 3 hours. And these guidelines don't take into account any specific surgical procedure (for example, your surgeon's concern about forcing air into the stomach). But you might want to use these guidelines when talking to your doctor to see when it's safe to pick up the trumpet again.

    Best of luck with your recovery.

    Mike
     
  5. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I was out for 3 months with the torn diaphragm. That is the time that it took the net that they sewed onto my diaphragm to "grow" into place. I am playing again pretty much at the same level as before but I still notice quite a bit even if those listening say that they do not.

    I did not play one note for that whole time. No Brandenburg Concertos or lead trumpet this YEAR. It just ain't worth taking a chance!
     
  6. amzi

    amzi Forte User

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    The recommendation ended up being no playing for 6 weeks. During the next 6 weeks I will be able to play very gently--just enough to keep the lips buzzing. The second 3 month period I can spend rebuilding endurance and range--but no lead playing. So, I have given up my position in a local big band. The leader said he was open to my return--we'll see.
     
  7. TrumpetMD

    TrumpetMD Fortissimo User

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    Thanks for the update. Six weeks is a pretty common recommendation after abdominal surgery. Best of luck with the recovery.

    Mike
     
  8. amzi

    amzi Forte User

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    Well, it's a few days short of 6 weeks, and I just couldn't wait any longer. I just had to find out how bad I sounded. It was bad--really bad. Of course playing on a 13A4a didn't help anything. Found a 13D4 and it was almost as bad--and I was just playing low C to 2nd line G. Tried a Bach 7DW and it sounded better--so that's what I'm going to use for the foreseeable future. Once I had played for 1/2 hour I began to sound better so I am making the assumption that part of the problem is dehydration. Anyway--we'll see how this goes, Monday I will play with a band for the first time. Since I'm the section leader I'm going to assign myself the 2nd and 3rd parts as necessary.
     
  9. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Nothing speaks better than experience. I would let Dr. Rowuk be your guide!
     
  10. barliman2001

    barliman2001 Fortissimo User

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    Good decision to come back slowly but with tremendous success in the end, and to take 2nd and 3rd parts for the time being. If it's a big band, I would rather hear from you that you put yourself on 3rd for a while - the 2nd part has so many solos that you should perhaps wait a little longer. Abdominal surgery is no wizardry these days; but the abdominal wall is such a complicated structure that it just takes time to heal properly. My worst warning in that respect is my paternal grandmother. At age 75, she had her appendix removed (which then was still a serious operation, not the fiddling little thing done nowadays) and was warned to keep quiet for a month or two. After two and a half weeks - in fact, only four days out of hospital -, she started competition gardening again and while working in her garden, ruptured the barely-healed incision internally (nothing to be seen on the outside) and passed away within the hour due to massive internal haemorrhage. That was in the late 70ies; but still, it does convey a warning.
    Play it slowly, and play it safe!!
     

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