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Old 28-01-2016, 09:38 PM
Devoid Devoid is offline
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Default 23 Yr Old New Poster Kyphosis, Need some guidance

Hi guys,
I've been lurking for a bit of time now a bit about myself. I am a 23 year old male, last time I had an X Ray (probably 2 years ago now) I had a kyphosis of aprox 57degrees and a large degree of lordosis (unsure of angle) to compensate and some scoliosis for good measure lol... Not so much scolios, just my right shoulder and hip are both hiked up, but it's mainly the lordosis/kyposis which is the problem.

I get a lot of discomfort from the kyphosis. A lot of stiffness, muscle, spinal pain, sitting all day at work takes its toll and especially working hands on causes me a lot of discomfort. I know my angle isn't considered that big in the grand scheme of things so I don't want to winge when people have it much worse but it does cause me a lot of physical and also emotional pain as I do get down thinking about it and the physical appearance of it. It's really the only thing that affects my confidence.

For the past few years I have had put in a huge amount of work to try and somewhat fix my problem, focusing on stretching, mobilising my thoracic spine, trying to fix my pelvic tilt etc but alas I've basically come to the conclusion that the structural aspect of this can only be fixed through surgery which is why I'm here. I'm turning my long time thoughts into action and want to investigate having the surgery done. The way I see it if at this age my spine has deteriorated to this point, I don't want to imagine what will be the outcome when I reach an age where my joints start to wear down (bearing in mind my mum has pretty bad osteoarthritis, I think it's in our family to have bad joint health) so I want to have this surgery done when I am young, to halt the curvature and to do it at an age where my body can handle this procedure. Basically So I can move on with my life.

Logically I would go to a GP and get a referral for an Orthopaedic surgeon to take a look at my spine to see if they think I am a candidate for surgery. What is the usual curve that a surgeon will perform the surgery. Obviously they would have to take into consideration progression of the curve, impact on quality of life etc. If I get my X Rays back and it shows a progression, what are the chances that I will be able to have this surgery done?

Also in terms of costing, is this surgery covered under medicare and how much out of pocket would I have to pay to have this done if anyone knows?

Would it also be a good idea to sign up to a private health fund before I go any further to hopefully cover myself for this time of surgery if I get the go ahead? Wondering the cost of this one also.

These are my main questions, I apologise for the long winded post I just felt like getting a little bit off my chest and will take any advice or information on what route people think I should take.. I've basically come to the conclusion after a lot of time that I want the surgery and am willing to suffer every bit of pain for it.

Thanks
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Old 30-01-2016, 08:34 AM
Christine Christine is offline
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Default Re: 23 Yr Old New Poster Kyphosis, Need some guidance

Hi Devoid

there are probably a few on the forum who know more about kyphosis than I do but think there would be many similarities in the insurance/hospital things.

I took out health insurance when I was looking for a surgeon to correct my scoliosis and by the time I had sorted that out the waiting period had passed and I then chose my date for surgery. My only costs was $500 admission fee (I think?) and some x-rays not completely covered under Medicare. It was great having it all covered and when I had the surgery booked I got the list of procedures to get a firm ok from my fund that it was covered.

If you don't have health insurance you will be done via the public hospital system and will have to wait for a date but think you can still choose your surgeon. I think. Someone else will probably advise better on that.

Previous x-rays are integral to measuring the development of spinal curvatures so take them with you to your specialist visit. With scoliosis it is at around 50deg that surgery is considered, but each case is different of course.

Yep. While your'e young is the best. My surgeries (had two) were when I was in my late 40s and I can tell you I didn't bounce back as quickly as the younger ones do! It was the biggest thing I've ever done in my entire life but it has changed my life so much for the better. I actually like myself, I look quite normal with no obvious deformity and have none of that horrid aching, nagging, debilitating pain. Things are good.

Hoping you hear from the others soon. (Hi Everyone ) We are a friendly bunch and sometimes very busy with life so not on here as much as we would like to be.

Christine x
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Old 30-01-2016, 09:39 PM
Devoid Devoid is offline
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Default Re: 23 Yr Old New Poster Kyphosis, Need some guidance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Christine View Post
Hi Devoid

there are probably a few on the forum who know more about kyphosis than I do but think there would be many similarities in the insurance/hospital things.

I took out health insurance when I was looking for a surgeon to correct my scoliosis and by the time I had sorted that out the waiting period had passed and I then chose my date for surgery. My only costs was $500 admission fee (I think?) and some x-rays not completely covered under Medicare. It was great having it all covered and when I had the surgery booked I got the list of procedures to get a firm ok from my fund that it was covered.

If you don't have health insurance you will be done via the public hospital system and will have to wait for a date but think you can still choose your surgeon. I think. Someone else will probably advise better on that.

Previous x-rays are integral to measuring the development of spinal curvatures so take them with you to your specialist visit. With scoliosis it is at around 50deg that surgery is considered, but each case is different of course.

Yep. While your'e young is the best. My surgeries (had two) were when I was in my late 40s and I can tell you I didn't bounce back as quickly as the younger ones do! It was the biggest thing I've ever done in my entire life but it has changed my life so much for the better. I actually like myself, I look quite normal with no obvious deformity and have none of that horrid aching, nagging, debilitating pain. Things are good.

Hoping you hear from the others soon. (Hi Everyone ) We are a friendly bunch and sometimes very busy with life so not on here as much as we would like to be.

Christine x
Thanks Christine! I think I will make an appointment with a spinal surgeon here in Melbourne (if anyone has any recommendations) and basically see what he has to say before I sign up for private health.

The only thing I'm worried about is the surgeon saying the curve of the kyphosis/lordosis isn't large enough before surgery is considered. Does anyone know around about what degree curve until surgery is considered considering the pain and the physical deformity and instability.
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Old 31-01-2016, 08:04 AM
Christine Christine is offline
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Default Re: 23 Yr Old New Poster Kyphosis, Need some guidance

Hi!

I sent you a PM with info about my Melbourne surgeon.
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Old 31-01-2016, 04:54 PM
Devoid Devoid is offline
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Default Re: 23 Yr Old New Poster Kyphosis, Need some guidance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Christine View Post
Hi!

I sent you a PM with info about my Melbourne surgeon.
I just checked my PMs and it says there's nothing there :P
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Old 02-02-2016, 06:52 AM
Christine Christine is offline
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Default Re: 23 Yr Old New Poster Kyphosis, Need some guidance

hmm that might have been me, will do again
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Old 22-02-2016, 04:25 PM
Jules Jules is offline
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Default Re: 23 Yr Old New Poster Kyphosis, Need some guidance

Hi Devoid,

The surgeon will look at your xray, the angle, your age and likelihood of progression. He will then recommend surgery or not. My angle (scoliosis, not kyphosis) was severe enough that he gave me a likelihood of it getting worse of more than 90%. He also spoken about how even though the surgery was not an immediate concern that the longer I waited (talking about years here) I could be looking into more than one surgery and more levels fused. So I opted for surgery. But this is something that, as you know, you have to discuss with your surgeon.

Now having health insurance or not... You could still chose your surgeon if you went public. Actually, part public part private. So say you see a surgeon privately (i.e. you pay for his consults which are partially refunded by Medicare anyways) but you ask to be put on his public waiting list as most surgeons operate both in private and public hospitals. I guess the disadvantage of going public is that you won't be able to plan for surgery in advance. They will give you a date and if you don't take it you have to wait for longer. And even when they give you a date, they could still cancel the surgery just before you are about to be wheeled into the operating room. This could happen with a private patient as well but it is more common in the public system as they might need the theatre for an urgent case and then your non urgent surgery gets scraped. Another issue is having to share a room, although that should not be the deciding factor, you should still consider it. You could be in a room with 3 other people and share a bathroom. A good thing about public is the discharge planning though, I think it works better than private. That means you could have more support going home, cheaper or even free equipment loans, outpatient visits at a very small cost. That sort of thing.

If you go private you can choose when you will have the surgery, where (depending where your surgeon operates), you usually have a private room, you don't get kicked out of the hospital as quickly as in the public system (because they need your bed for someone else) and your surgery is less likely to be cancelled. But you still have out of pocket expenses. I paid for the outpatient consults as I said before (got part of it back through Medicare), paid for my xrays both as an outpatient and as an inpatient (again got part of it back though medicare and part through my insurance for the inpatient xrays), I paid for my brace (but I think you would have to pay for it if public also as it is custom made), paid $500 to get admitted in hospital because my plan has an excess of $500 (you can sometimes use your bonus to pay for this, I had used my bonus already)... You also have to check with your insurance if your doctor is a preferred or no gap doctor, which means that his fees will be completely covered by your insurance. This varies. My surgeon was a "no gap" surgeon so I did not pay for his fees or the assistant's fees. It was all covered. The anaesthetist's fees weren't completely covered but instead of paying in excess of 2000 I only paid 200 and something so that's a win. I guess what I want to say is that you will still have out of pocket expenses even with a private cover. You also have to check with your insurer which plan is right for you. You have to be very specific to avoid surprises and then wait the 12 month period.

I hope I have answered part of your questions. I will pm you the name of my surgeon in Melbourne.

Good luck!
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