Chiari Malformation Community
Surgery recovery
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Surgery recovery

My 19yo dd was just diagnosed with chiari after 2 years of suffereing from severe headaches, numbness on her right side, fainting spells, and other symptoms.  She works as a CNA (certified nurse assistant) caring for elderly people in thier homes.
She doesn't live at home.
My question is about her work, how long she may need to be off -she is independant and has no sub at this time, so we need to arrange this or she will have to quit.  

Also, how intense will her care during recovery will be, do I need to plan to have her home again during that time or can she return right to her own place?
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Hi and welcome to the Chiari forum.

Ur DD may not be able to return to her line of work for some time, it all depends on how she responds to the surgery, and there is no way to know until afterward.

What r her job responsibilities...duties....if lifting is involved she may have to stay away longer than if it was a office type position...again, it all depends on her and how she does post op.

Is she a full time nurse? she eligible for FMLA? If so, there is no need for her to quit.

She will need to have someone with her for the initial 2 weeks of recovery.....

We are all different as to how we deal with pain, pain meds...and the surgery in general recovery is different for all of us.

May I ask, does ur DD have a syrinx, CSF obstruction, EDS, sleep apnea, tethered cord, or over crowding?


Definitely inquire about doing her surgery endoscopically. I had mine done 5 days ago and I am doing quite well. I can't imagine going back to work before 6 weeks though. I get tired and sore very fast, even though I am doing great for just having brain surgery. And yes, she will need someone there for the first couple weeks to help her. I still need assistance with showering (can't reach up and wash my hair), I can't drive, I need a hand for balance going up and down stairs. I would think within another week I will be able to run short errands (as a passenger and with another adult there). But I doubt I will be getting back into the full swing of things till 6 weeks post-op.
I agree completely with the postings!  Two weeks of really needing help. Not being able to lift and not being able to do things like wash your hair or even get dressed can make life very difficult.  Helping hands are needed.  It is also very important to have some support and someone cheering you on when you  have your difficult days when you are just sore, tired and frustrated.  I think I drove at about 5 weeks post op but it was LIMITED driving and only where I knew I could get pull through parking.  I still got tired very quickly and things like driving with lots of arm and neck movement made you very sore very quickly.  
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