This blog will chronicle my experience undergoing Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) – an operation I am undergoing in February 2012. I have gone through 3 surgeries to improve my mobility, but this time, I hope to change my life. I want to share my journey with other adults like me. SDR is the only treatment (that I know of) for CP that provides a permanent reduction in the level of muscle stiffness (spasticity).
I learned about this option while doing some research on CP treatments in wee hours of the morning several months ago. My ah-ha moment came when I stumbled upon the blog of another adult with Spastic Diplegia who underwent the operation successfully. Having opened Pandora’s Box – I was hooked!
I researched the procedure obsessively (as my friends can tell you – thanks guys!) before deciding to move forward. I found that this surgery has the potential to significantly change my life, give me the opportunity to be more physically active, and dramatically reduce the amount of pain and discomfort that I have accepted as the norm.
SDR is primarily performed on children who have CP but has been refined by Dr. T. S. Park; his refinements allow adults to successfully undergo the procedure. He has performed this operation on about 56 adults so I feel like I am joining an exclusive club. Of the 56 I have spoken to 12 people that have undergone the procedure and all of them have said they would do it again.
I will be in peak physical shape going into the surgery so I have spent the past couple of months training like a machine. That means I have been doing pre-hab exercises prescribed by Dr. Park on a daily basis in addition to my normal workout routine. I am a workout fanatic that regularly works 6-7 days a week. Junkie that I am – I added the pre-hab exercises to my routine rather than make any changes. This means that I am spending a considerable amount of time each day exercising. The humbling thing about the pre-hab exercises is that they are all pretty simple exercises ranging from planks to bridges that should be as easy as a walk in the park.
Over the coming months I will use this blog to chronicle my experience with SDR from the activities leading up the surgery and post op rehab.
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