Yesterday I had a follow-up appointment with the surgeon who operated on my back to remove the metastatic cancer tumor from the spine and to implant titanium bars. After surgery I began wearing a TLSO brace that he thought I would need to wear forever. That was because of the expectation that between the destruction to the bone from both the cancer and the chemo, the bone would not recuperate sufficiently to support my back. X-rays during the follow-up visits, in fact, confirmed this. That is until yesterday.
Yesterday’s x-rays showed that the bone in my spine has begun to grow back. And . . . DRUM ROLL . . . that means I can ditch the brace for now. He said it’s not good bone, but it’s bone where there was none before. I am delirious. Wearing the brace for this long was becoming torture. The bar in the front was so uncomfortable, especially when eating. Overall, the brace held the muscles so tightly, it impeded my ability to maintain stability and balance while walking or dancing or doing most any kind of activity. Without the brace it’s easier to move. I am so happy to have the freedom of movement without the brace and can’t wait to feel the benefits of exercising so I can overcome this weakness and feel some strength again.
My surgeon said that I need to keep the brace for the future, but I’m not thinking about that. If the cancer attacks that area again, I’ll deal with it then.
For now I’m basking in the delight that I can put that brace in the back of the closet. It feels just as nice as a summer afternoon at the beach.