Author Topic: Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz  (Read 1874 times)

Girldad

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Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz
« on: April 04, 2022, 08:45:16 am »
I am recently home from surgery in San Diego with Drs. Friedman and Schwartz and wanted to recap my experience for anybody that is exploring their surgical options.  First off, I am so glad that I found this discussion forum because it led me to UC San Diego.  I really couldn't be happier with the surgeons and staff at UC San Diego.  From the first free consult with Dr. Friedman, I knew that is where I should be having surgery.  They do more of these surgeries than anybody in the country, their support staff deals with acoustic neuroma patients every day, and I truly believe that there is nobody better in the country at removing the tumor than Dr. Schwartz.  Even though I still had partial hearing in my affected ear, I chose to have translab surgery for a better chance at complete tumor removal.  They believe that was achieved even though it was difficult.  I have no facial paralysis whatsoever.  For these reasons, I am thrilled that I went to San Diego.  I am sure that there are other surgeons that could have done this somewhere else in the country, but I felt very confident in the abilities of Dr. Friedman and Schwartz.  I also had the BAHA put in at the same time as surgery.

My recovery has went pretty smooth as well.  I had surgery on a Thursday and was discharged from the hospital on Saturday.  I was up and walking the day after surgery with very little dizziness or nausea.  They told me that I was recovering faster than almost anybody they had seen.  Maybe they tell this to everybody to encourage them.  I think my tumor has already done so much damage to my vestibular nerve that my other side had been compensating for some time already, as I really never had any trouble walking or moving my head around after surgery. 

My main challenges were eating and fatigue.  I had trouble eating very much until about a week after surgery.  Nothing sounded good and nothing tasted good.  I went ahead and forced myself to eat just because I knew I needed to.  The first couple of days out of the hospital I would get very tired very fast and had to take naps even though I tried not to.  That got better around day 4.  I really think around day 4 or 5 is where I really started to turn a corner and feel better.  From around day 4 I was walking at least 2 miles a day and sometimes over 4.  By the time I went to my post-op appointments, I was feeling almost normal again.  I hope this does not sound like bragging.  I am sharing this so that someone getting ready for surgery will know that even though the first few days after surgery will be rough, it can get better quickly once your body starts adjusting to what has happened to it. 

I am now back home and feeling great.  Not working for the next few weeks is going to be tough for me because I feel so good, but I will follow the doctor's orders.  My only frustration now is with my BAHA.  I am a hat wearer (all day every day), and now I am going to have to alter my hats because the BAHA sits right where my hat bands go.  I will figure it out.  If anybody has any suggestions go ahead and let me know.

If anybody is looking for options on treatment or just a recommendation on a care plan, I would strongly encourage sending your records to Dr. Friedman and at least get the free consultation from him.  He is an awesome guy and one of the foremost experts on acoustic neuromas in the country.  I could not have had a better experience with him and Dr. Schwartz. 

I know this is a long post, but I hope maybe it helps somebody that reads it.  Once again, thank you to all the members of this discussion forum that have shared their experiences so that I could make the decision that was best for me in the end.  Also, good luck to anyone that is trying to decide how to proceed, I know that it can be overwhelming.  I hope everyone finds the solution that is right for them and their situation.  Thank you for reading.
Diagnosed 10/16/20 19.2mm x 14.7mm x 12.7mm
Last MRI on 4/27/21 19.2mm x 14.7mm x 13.8mm
Translab surgery at UCSD 3/17/22
with Drs. Friedman and Schwartz
BAHA user

donjehle

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Re: Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2022, 11:27:42 am »
Thank you Girldad for sharing such a wonderful report.  This is very helpful for the hundreds of people who will view this post.  It is very encouraging to the rest of us.

And best wishes on your continued recovery!  We continue to root for your great progress!
Burning Tongue, Loss of Hearing & Balance, and Tinnitus led to MRI. Very small AN found on 11/23/2021
While watching and waiting, lost significant hearing. WRS now at 12% (down from 100%). Was fitted with CROS system on 3/7/22.  Stable MRI on 7/29/22
No treatment yet.

kcollette

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Re: Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2022, 05:15:51 pm »
I’m glad to hear your surgery went so well! Going back to work brought the fatigue back hardcore for me for about a week but it got better quickly after that. Enjoy your time off to recover (even if you don’t feel like you need it)!

Greece Lover

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Re: Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2022, 07:30:09 am »
Always great to have a positive report. Walking two miles so soon after surgery does seem like you're in the 99th percentile, so congrats.
Vestibular Schwannoma 1.2 cm. Right side.
Middle fossa surgery at University of Iowa on May 9 2016.
Hearing saved.  Face is fine. Balance pretty darn good most days.
One year follow up MRI showed no tumor. 
Five year follow up showed no tumor, so I'm in the clear.

DZ

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Re: Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2022, 01:10:09 pm »
I want to thank you so much as well for your detailed summary and I am happy it went so well for you.  Its exactly what I was looking for.  How are you doing now, about two months post op? And also, where did you stay while in San Diego and would you recommend to others? Pros/Cons?   Thanks! (I am very newly diagnosed). Donna
Significant Left-sided hearing loss & some tinnitus, Size of tumor was 2.1cmX1.9cmX1.5cm. Translabyrinthine surgical resection on 8/18/22 at UCSD. Thin remanent left on facial nerve. Post op -No left hearing, bilateral tinnitus, no significant balance issues, recovering.

Girldad

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Re: Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2022, 09:22:39 pm »
Sorry for the delayed response, I didn’t get this checked over the weekend.

I am doing great now at a little more than 2 months out. I have considered myself back to normal for some time now. I have been back to full time work since about 6 weeks post op. It is really hard for me to say exactly when I went back to work. I am a farmer/rancher, so my work is right out my back door. I started off by doing some of the less demanding jobs with no lifting and gradual increased my physical labor and work hours.  I have been lifting with no restrictions and spending long hours in a tractor for the last 4 weeks with no problems whatsoever.

While in San Diego, we stayed in the La Jolla house for the first week of our stay. It is within walking distance of the hospital, so it was very convenient for my wife when I was in the hospital. It is a very nice facility and very affordable. It is associated with the medical facilities there and is for patients and families to stay in while receiving care at UCSD. I would definitely recommend staying there if possible for the first part of your stay.

The second week we stayed in an Airbnb close to the beach. This was just our personal preference. We kind of just wanted to get out and away to somewhere new with plenty of places to walk. I am very glad we did for many reasons, but like I said, it is all just personal preference. Some people prefer to stay in the La Jolla for their whole stay, and we definitely considered it.

If you would like me to go into more detail about any part of this I am more than happy to do so. Good luck to you on your journey. I did a ton of research and met with many specialists before I made my final decision. I would encourage everybody else to do the same. At the same time I would highly encourage anybody that is diagnosed to take advantage of the free consults offered by UCSD or the house institute. The more information you have, the better equipped you are to make the right decision for you.
Diagnosed 10/16/20 19.2mm x 14.7mm x 12.7mm
Last MRI on 4/27/21 19.2mm x 14.7mm x 13.8mm
Translab surgery at UCSD 3/17/22
with Drs. Friedman and Schwartz
BAHA user

donjehle

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Re: Successful surgery with Friedman and Schwartz
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2022, 04:54:37 am »
Thanks for the great update, Girldad!
Burning Tongue, Loss of Hearing & Balance, and Tinnitus led to MRI. Very small AN found on 11/23/2021
While watching and waiting, lost significant hearing. WRS now at 12% (down from 100%). Was fitted with CROS system on 3/7/22.  Stable MRI on 7/29/22
No treatment yet.

 


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