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#2022375 - 01/27/13 07:50 PM Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work?
Dave Stahl Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
I've got to go under the knife on Tuesday of this week, and will have to take some of my so-called "vacation" time for recovery. I was wondering if anyone here has had this fairly common operation and how long they were off work. I'm already preparing my tool kit "lite." I'm figuring at least 10 days, maybe longer. Thanks in advance for any info on this.
_________________________
Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2022383 - 01/27/13 08:11 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1311
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: Dave Stahl
I've got to go under the knife on Tuesday of this week, and will have to take some of my so-called "vacation" time for recovery. I was wondering if anyone here has had this fairly common operation and how long they were off work. I'm already preparing my tool kit "lite." I'm figuring at least 10 days, maybe longer. Thanks in advance for any info on this.


Dave,

Nothing about recovery prediction, but something that was helpful with a friend who had heart surgery and then simply needed to avoid muscle strain:
He used an impact tuning hammer for uprights and that helped a lot. Of course, "traditional" tuning procedure puts more stress directly on the chest area, but your whole body really gets involved. The only part of your body that actively participates with an impact lever is the wrist.
Dunno . . . maybe it would be worth hurdling the very low learning curve for an impact lever if it would reduce strain for you.

Anyway, here's hoping for a quick recovery.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

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#2022385 - 01/27/13 08:14 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Bob Newbie Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/02/06
Posts: 1549
It took me 4 weeks.. no climbing stairs,or driving...this is for an inguinal hernia..
talk to your Dr.

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#2022400 - 01/27/13 08:38 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Roy Rodgers Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/01/09
Posts: 347
Loc: Ranger, Texas
Same with me. And keep and ice pack handy at all times. It will become your new best friend. It will help keep a lot of swelling down. Also, a pillow so you can hold the area when you cough. You'll be surprised how much you will cough.

I couldn't do much for 4 weeks, but my boss had a chair and desk set up so I could take calls and print tickets. So I was back at work in 7 days. Just couldn't do any heavy stuff.

I cheated a bit too, after a couple of weeks I did some light duty stuff.

But this is one area you want to make sure you heal right.

I don't care to have that done again.
_________________________
Tuning and repairing pianos since 1981 in Ranger, Tx. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Roys-Piano-Service/173273022711505

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#2022406 - 01/27/13 08:47 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Bob Newbie]
Dave Stahl Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Thanks for the input, gentlemen. I'll be talking extensively to the doc tomorrow. 4 weeks would not be ideal...
_________________________
Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2022409 - 01/27/13 08:49 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
accordeur Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 1207
Loc: Québec, Canada
I don't know anything about hernias, but I wish you the best.
_________________________
Jean Poulin

Musician, Tuner and Technician

www.actionpiano.ca

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#2022420 - 01/27/13 09:08 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
ando Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3613
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: Dave Stahl
Thanks for the input, gentlemen. I'll be talking extensively to the doc tomorrow. 4 weeks would not be ideal...


It depends what sort of hernia it is, the extent of the repair, and your level of health and recuperative power, but you should brace yourself for up to 1 month off. It isn't about what's ideal, it's about making sure you heal properly and don't need another operation in the same place in the future. You will have to be patient. Good luck.

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#2022430 - 01/27/13 09:20 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 6828
Loc: Grand Rapids Michigan
http://www.herniasurgeries.com/upclose.htm

Dave check this out. "The Shouldice Method." Sparky from PW put me onto this and I had this done in Ohio. I was back to work in a few days. I was walking a LONG ways the say same. He had me walking 2 hours a day, beginning the same day after my surgery.

The doctor pictured was my doctor. I HIGHLY recommend doing this repair. It is TENS TIMES BETTER than slicing you all up the old fashioned way. Trust me. I've had both ways done. The way you're looking at hurts like an SOB and you'll be laid up for at least a month. This other way beats the old fashioned way, hands down!!!!! You won't be laid up for more than a few days to a week at best. I believe, (this was 3 years ago now) I was back to work within 3 or 4 days if I remember right. And, normal working days at that.

This method was pioneered in Canada.

http://www.herniasurgeries.com/ Here's his main web page.

Here is the Canadian website for it. http://www.shouldice.com/the_shouldice_repair.htm

Please, before you undergo the "traditional method, look into this method. I was totally amazed at the difference!!!! These web sites will answer most of your questions if you take some time to read them.
_________________________
Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.

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#2022447 - 01/27/13 09:41 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Bob Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 3876
Having had the traditional, I second Jerry's option. Less cutting is better - and don't put it off till something pops though the muscle wall. It was 8 days before I made it around the block with the dog, and maybe two weeks before I tuned my first piano. I think the sooner you get moving after surgery, the faster the recovery.

Again, DON'T put it off. Business should be slower now with the X mas rush waning.

It will be 4 months before you are 100% and feel you can run or bike (you bike don't you?)

Oh, last piece of advice -- Don't lift any more pianos.
_________________________
www.PianoTunerOrlando.com






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#2022449 - 01/27/13 09:45 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
RestorerPhil Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/26/12
Posts: 212
Loc: Georgia, USA
You definitely want the laproscopic method, rather than incision. As Jerry says, quick recovery in a week.

http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/laparoscopic-inguinal-hernia-repair
_________________________
Lavender Piano Services
Established 1977
Tuning, Concert Maintenance,
Rebuilding & Restoration

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#2022456 - 01/27/13 09:50 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Jerry Groot RPT]
Dave Stahl Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Thanks, Jerry. This looks like the way to go, by what I'm reading. I wish I lived closer to Canada....but I'm thinking it might make economic and medical sense to go do this if the alternative is missing a month of work.
_________________________
Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2022468 - 01/27/13 09:59 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 6828
Loc: Grand Rapids Michigan
It is the way to go. smile I've had both ways done. If you like a lot of pain, do it the other way. wink If you don't, then find a good doctor that does it the Shouldice method way. But, while they may "claim to do it" they may not actually do it so, you'll have to do your own homework on it. Again, I can say thanks again to Sparky Biff for giving me that information to begin with.

And, walk walk walk which you already do a lot of anyway Dave. You will be back to work in no time flat. in fact, that doctor told me that I could (believe it or not) go back to work at my normal level pretty much right away. I didn't quite feel up to doing that and so I didn't but, like I said, within a few days, I was working at my normal pace again and without much pain too. I tell you what? It beats being laid up and miserable for 2 weeks any day!

Walking helps tremendously. You will be truely amazed at how much LESS pain you have doing the Shouldice method and then following their directions which was walking 2 hours every day. I walked 15 minutes at a time until I got my 2 hours in the first couple of days.

I traveled to Ohio to have it done. The next day, I drove home with the wife. 8 hour drive from there to here.
_________________________
Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.

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#2022474 - 01/27/13 10:13 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Thanks, Jerry. Not sure if Kaiser--my HMO--uses this method. And it looks expensive if you're not insured for it. But I'll be doing my homework, that's for sure!
_________________________
Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2022483 - 01/27/13 10:32 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 6828
Loc: Grand Rapids Michigan
My doctor worked with me on it. Said if I paid up front, the costs were WAY WAY less so, I did. Wrote a check on the spot in full. I have a $10,000 deductible anyway. He gave me a great deal. Call them.
_________________________
Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.

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#2022530 - 01/28/13 12:04 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Jerry Groot RPT]
electone2007 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/13/08
Posts: 274
Loc: Philippines
Originally Posted By: Jerry Groot RPT
..:the Shouldice method way. But, while they may "claim to do it" they may not actually do it ...


That's because the Shouldice method uses existing native tissue to repair the hernia, but sometimes when you get in there you find out that the tissues aren't suitable for Shouldice repair because they are either too attenuated or weak or whatever. In these cases I put in a prosthetic mesh if the patient can afford it or do another method such as Bassini.

Patients are usually back to work in ten days post op.

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#2022540 - 01/28/13 12:24 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Thanks all for the advice. It certainly isn't a simple problem or solution. Shouldice seems like the way to go, if all the situation is right. I'll be talking to my surgeon tomorrow and find out what method he uses.
_________________________
Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2022542 - 01/28/13 12:32 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
electone2007 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/13/08
Posts: 274
Loc: Philippines
Originally Posted By: Dave Stahl
Thanks all for the advice. It certainly isn't a simple problem or solution. Shouldice seems like the way to go, if all the situation is right. I'll be talking to my surgeon tomorrow and find out what method he uses.


Ask him about the Lichtenstein repair as well. It's what I do and patients tell me they have less pain.

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#2022545 - 01/28/13 12:47 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Thanks, Electone. I'll ask Dr. Ilano. If I lived in the Phillipines, I'd give you lifetime piano service on your Hailun in exchange for piano tuner hernia repair....
_________________________
Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2022554 - 01/28/13 01:13 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2447
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
The Shouldice clinic is awesome and recovery time is greatly reduced with their method. I had 4 doctors tell me 20 years ago to get a double inguinal hernia operated on. Went to the Shouldice and three of their top doctors looked at me and hummed and hawed about whether I should get surgery. They explained the pro's and cons of getting it done and not having it done. When they mentioned erectile disfunction and "sterility" as one of the many possible complications from surgery, I told them to stop and thanked them for their honest opinion. I asked the doctors "if it was you, would you get it done?" and they all said "no".

I have been fine to this day, am careful about stretching in the morning and how I lift heavy things. I am so happy they wer'nt a "run for profit" hospital, as I am sure they would have agreed with the other doctors and slotted me in.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

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#2022556 - 01/28/13 01:17 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
electone2007 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/13/08
Posts: 274
Loc: Philippines
The advice and help I get from you guys are so much appreciated. I'm just trying to give back some.

Wishing you a quick recovery! :-)

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#2022727 - 01/28/13 09:49 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
UnrightTooner Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/08
Posts: 4949
Loc: Bradford County, PA
Last year I had a "regular" repair for a linguinal hernia. I took only a three day weekend off my mostly desk job. (No sick leave here so I didn't tell my employer.) The Doctor gave me the OK to do whatever after about 2 weeks. I was back to tuning right away, though. I was worried that I'd have to remove an action, but I didn't have to.

It wasn't a bad hernia anyway, I think just some fat instead of intestine, but it had been there for a while. If I paid attention to keeping my lower abs firm, I could keep it "in" after pushing it "in". Soooo.... if you can keep your lower abs tight while tuning (which is a good idea, anyway) I think you'll be OK.
_________________________
Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?

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#2022735 - 01/28/13 10:04 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
pianolive Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 327
Loc: Europe
Yea, one week on the sofa and another three weeks doing nothing.

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#2022738 - 01/28/13 10:07 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 6828
Loc: Grand Rapids Michigan
I always find this an interesting topic.

Once doctor Grisken got inside of me, he found that my hernia was B A D, he said. Worse than he thought. He wound up putting mesh in which is great as far as I am concerned. It makes it stronger but, he still did the rest of it, using the Shouldice method as far as getting at it and closing it up and all that which is a lot, less invasive and a lot less painful. The pain by comparison to the first one, well, I guess I can't emphazie enough the difference.

I talked with my wife about it and thought more about it last night after I went to bed, trying to remember it all.

Here's what came back to me (between the wife and I) After 3 days, I no longer needed any pain pills at all and was back to work full time tuning, I had no more pain. I was pulling pianos from the wall, and any other piano related things like removing grand actions even with no problems. I know this sounds unbelievable but, it's true, Dr. Grisken had given me the green light to do whatever I wanted to do immediately after surgery.

A friend of mine who is a marathon runner flew to Ohio from Florida to have the Shouldice Method done. Within a few days, she was running several miles a day again. That's a little bit different because you're jostling your organs around jumping around running so she hurt for longer than I did setting on a piano bench all day long. smile But, the point is, she was back to running almost right away. smile
_________________________
Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.

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#2022758 - 01/28/13 10:36 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4425
Loc: San Jose, CA
Sorry you're ailing, Dave. My brother had hernia surgery recently, and he said recovery was about a month--- and was no picnic. But he's glad it's behind him, and he's feeling a lot better now.

Kaiser did a pretty extensive job of pre-op education and counseling before I had the knee replacement (and testing, and imaging, and blood-typing--- you name it--- and also a lot of post-op stuff, to make the recovery go better). So, they're good that way. You should have plenty of opportunity to ask the surgeon about what procedure, and why they prefer the one they're offering, and to request the one that gives you the quickest recovery. You are also entitled to a second opinion under the coverage, if you want it.

It can be hard to see the good side of having a surgical procedure, but the downside of not having it is all-too-apparent. On the whole, we're lucky that it's available, and I keep telling myself that about my dentist...
_________________________
Clef


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#2022836 - 01/28/13 01:10 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
AndyJ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/29/12
Posts: 219
Loc: Near Dayton, Ohio USA
Originally Posted By: Dave Stahl
Thanks, Jerry. This looks like the way to go, by what I'm reading. I wish I lived closer to Canada....but I'm thinking it might make economic and medical sense to go do this if the alternative is missing a month of work.

Years ago a neighbor and friend of mine traveled from Ohio to Canada for this surgery. His motivations were the desire for a quick recovery AND the much lower cost, as he was one of the millions of Americans without health insurance. As I recall, the bill for the whole procedure in Canada was around one fifth the US cost.

He was back at work as a woodworker very quickly.

Andy

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#2022848 - 01/28/13 01:37 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/11
Posts: 1973
Loc: Philadelphia area
How long? How about just long enough to go through the Beethoven Sonatas?

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#2022863 - 01/28/13 02:13 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Ralph Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/01
Posts: 1300
Loc: Delaware (slower/lower)
Two words of advice I'm surprised have not yet offered,.......stool softener.
_________________________
Do or do not. There is no try.

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#2022865 - 01/28/13 02:16 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: AndyJ]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2447
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Originally Posted By: AndyJ
Originally Posted By: Dave Stahl
Thanks, Jerry. This looks like the way to go, by what I'm reading. I wish I lived closer to Canada....but I'm thinking it might make economic and medical sense to go do this if the alternative is missing a month of work.

Years ago a neighbor and friend of mine traveled from Ohio to Canada for this surgery. His motivations were the desire for a quick recovery AND the much lower cost, as he was one of the millions of Americans without health insurance. As I recall, the bill for the whole procedure in Canada was around one fifth the US cost.

He was back at work as a woodworker very quickly.

Andy


At the Shouldice clinic in Toronto, more than half the cars in the parking lot have US plates on them...very popular place for other international travelers also.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

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#2022954 - 01/28/13 04:30 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Sparky McBiff Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 1112
Loc: Toronto, Ontario
When I got my procedure done at the Shouldice clinic(I was lucky in that it was only an umbilical hernia at my naval which was pretty minor) I was informed by the staff there that at the moment about 60% of the people there were Americans and the majority of them had already had surgery previously in the US. I guess there is a lot of eventual failures with the traditional surgical methods that are most commonly used in the US.
I certainly heard some horror stories while I was there from those that had undergone previous procedures elsewhere.
Although the surgery and the 3 day stay actually cost me about $330 (which was the first time I had to pay for ANY procedure at all in Canada) the Americans paid substantially more, yet practically all of them told me that it was vastly cheaper than they would have had to pay back home. Most of them were amazed at how cheap it actually was.

Over the years I've run into many people who have had their surgeries done at Shouldice and I've yet run into anyone that later had any issues.

When I went there I initially didn't understand why there were so many Americans but at the time I didn't realize how superior the Shouldice method was and the very high rate of eventual failure that often occurs with other techniques.
More than one American had told me how surprised they had to go to Canada to use such a ground breaking technique, even though they'd been doing it there for I don't know how many years.

I guess the constant propaganda in the US about of how "horrible" the Canadian health care system is has been going on for so long that many of them are surprised when they find out that that is not the case at all.
(Actually a study performed by the CBC once asked Canadians what they were most proud of and the overall number one answer was our health care system. The number one Canadian ever was Tommy Douglas, the Saskatchewan premier who was responsible for implementing our nationwide health care).


If anyone chooses to go somewhere else that claims they use the Shouldice method I would suggest doing a heck of a lot of Googling and research to make sure that is so.
I got lucky since I was referred to the Shouldice clinic the first time which meant that I would be practically guaranteed not to have to deal with the issue again.

Myself I was back doing heavy labour the next day, although that was stupid and I should have waited a few days at least.
But I only had a umbilical hernia which was relatively minor but those that undergo the procedure for an inguinal hernia I believe that most Shouldice patients are back at their usual work within a week.

According to their website they've got about a 99.5% success rate.
I'd go back in a second but unfortunately I guess I'll never get the chance.

http://www.shouldice.com/the_shouldice_repair.htm


Edited by Sparky McBiff (01/28/13 04:39 PM)
_________________________
Hailun 198







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#2022957 - 01/28/13 04:37 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Sparky McBiff]
AndyJ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/29/12
Posts: 219
Loc: Near Dayton, Ohio USA
Originally Posted By: Sparky McBiff
...the constant propaganda in the US about of how "horrible" the Canadian health care system is ....

During the debate over what became the Affordable Care Act (now usually known as Obamacare), I had to sit through two meetings at my office where the rep from our health insurance agency gave long scary talks about the horrors of Canadian health care. He claimed that one of his coworkers had an aunt in Canada who had to wait *nine months* after having a heart attack before she could see a cardiologist!

The rep didn't know that the woman standing next to him, my company's finance officer, is Canadian, has actual aunts in Canada, and knew he was lying.

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#2022969 - 01/28/13 04:58 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Sparky McBiff]
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 6828
Loc: Grand Rapids Michigan
Sparky said:
Quote:
Although the surgery and the 3 day stay actually cost me about $330.


Think about that for a moment. a 3 day stay, cost him $330! A 3 day stay in a major hospital here in Grand Rapids would probably cost more like $15,000 PLUS the surgery!!

If it weren't for Sparky's advice to me, I would have had no idea about this procedure. I'd never heard of it.

My own Dr., when I asked him why more doctor's here are not using the Shouldice Method looked at me and rubbed his fingers together.....saying it's all about the money in America... It's all about a permanent fix in Canada.
_________________________
Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.

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#2022972 - 01/28/13 05:00 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21671
Loc: Oakland
I thought the nine month wait was for pre-natal care!
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#2022993 - 01/28/13 05:34 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Jerry Groot RPT]
Emmery Offline
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Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2447
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Originally Posted By: Jerry Groot RPT
Sparky said:
Quote:
Although the surgery and the 3 day stay actually cost me about $330.


Think about that for a moment. a 3 day stay, cost him $330! A 3 day stay in a major hospital here in Grand Rapids would probably cost more like $15,000 PLUS the surgery!!

If it weren't for Sparky's advice to me, I would have had no idea about this procedure. I'd never heard of it.

My own Dr., when I asked him why more doctor's here are not using the Shouldice Method looked at me and rubbed his fingers together.....saying it's all about the money in America... It's all about a permanent fix in Canada.


Whats strange is that many Canadians opt to go to Cuba for specialized surgery. My friends dad needed a special surgery done on his eyes which isn't done here in Canada. There were only 4 hospitals in the US that do it. He got quotes running from 26K to 34K at the American hospitals. The Canadian OHIP system only vouched to cover 5K of his costs.

He flew to Cuba and the got the operation done for $4400, which included a stay for a week in a nice beachside hotel while they monitored his recovery. Turns out that the Cuban doctor was the one who invented the surgery 7 years ago and boasted the best stats for uncomplicated recovery. The US hospitals were emulating his techniques with a slightly lower success rate. Go figure.
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#2023103 - 01/28/13 09:43 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Les Koltvedt Offline
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Registered: 04/13/05
Posts: 3195
Loc: Canton, MI
I'm in the same boat... looking at addressing mine this year... my how our reading interests change as we age....lol
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#2023172 - 01/29/13 01:14 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
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Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
After some inquiry, I was pleased to discover that my Kaiser doc uses the laparoscopic method for hernia repair: small incisions, quick recovery, exercise (moderate for a while) encouraged, $15.00 copay. That's $15, not $1500! Whew...will give a follow up report on this if anyone's interested.

Thanks for the education and direction, folks! I am relieved about this, I gotta say!

As an aside, I find it interesting that Canada's health care system, so demonized by many in the US, proves superior in at least one way. Go figure.


Edited by Dave Stahl (01/29/13 01:15 AM)
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#2023187 - 01/29/13 01:57 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Emmery Offline
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Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2447
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Both the Canadian and US systems have their benefits and downfalls. The Canadian system keeps the doctors and hospitals in check as far as rising costs but often there are longer wait times for treatment. On a social level its more fair in the sense that a filthy rich dude with a bad drinking habit can't buy their way in front of you for an liver transplant. You would have to leave the country and do that elsewhere. Wallet biopsies are not performed in Canada. People with mental problems such as manic depression and other pre disposed conditions don't have to worry HMO's turning them down with the old "not at this time" line. An incredibly expensive operation or long term care will not leave a family bankrupt. There is some peace of mind which comes with that. If a person is extremely well off/permanently employed and have a relatively clean bill of health, these things may not matter so much. Some people are not so fortunate and it does.


Edited by Emmery (01/29/13 01:59 AM)
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#2023296 - 01/29/13 06:45 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Greg the Piano Tuner Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/16/08
Posts: 43
Loc: Boston
For me, the hardest part of my post-surgery was getting out of bed in the morning. I had to learn to roll sideways as I got up, since sitting upright wasn't possible until many weeks after my surgery. Good luck to you! Always allow twice as much time as the doctors tell you.

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#2023351 - 01/29/13 09:36 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7901
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Dave Stahl
After some inquiry, I was pleased to discover that my Kaiser doc uses the laparoscopic method for hernia repair: small incisions, quick recovery, exercise (moderate for a while) encouraged, $15.00 copay. That's $15, not $1500! Whew...will give a follow up report on this if anyone's interested.

Thanks for the education and direction, folks! I am relieved about this, I gotta say!

As an aside, I find it interesting that Canada's health care system, so demonized by many in the US, proves superior in at least one way. Go figure.


I had a similar operation some 36 years ago

small incision, not traumatic repair, I frankly do not remind the details out of the few days of recovery, but it did not seem to be very long.. may be 3-4 weeks and of course being cautious ... of course you are, because you feel as soon an effort is not well distributed



Edited by Olek (01/29/13 09:37 AM)
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#2023486 - 01/29/13 02:14 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Emmery]
Dave Stahl Offline
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Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Great post, Emmery, lots of truth.
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#2024037 - 01/30/13 12:48 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
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Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
A quick follow up: Turns out that for my particular type of hernia, my doc didn't think laproscopic would be the way to go due to potential complications should I ever have prostate issues.

I'm guessing the operation went well...As I was being wheeled to the OR on the gurney, the anesthesiologist said "the IV is going." 30 seconds later, I woke up in the recovery room, surgery complete. Getting old isn't much fun, but it sure beats the alternative. I haven't been in a whole lot of pain, and have kept the Vicodin consumption to only one so far. Hate that crap. Walked 1/2 hour today. I should be working next week, back on the bike in two weeks.

Cheers!
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#2024073 - 01/30/13 02:10 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Ralph Offline
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Registered: 12/09/01
Posts: 1300
Loc: Delaware (slower/lower)
The second and third post op days were the worst form me. Takes 24 hours for the anesthisia to completely wear off. I've had two hernia repairs (one on each side). Stay off the Vicodin if you can. Bad constipation which doesn't go well with a recent hernia repair. cry No one ever died from pain.
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#2024197 - 01/30/13 05:56 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Ralph]
Dave Stahl Offline
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Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Starting to finally get a little sore, especially painful when sitting up. Yeah, not a big fan of vicodin for that reason, especially in this particular operation. Suddenly I'm craving prunes mad
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#2024201 - 01/30/13 06:09 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7901
Loc: France
Good luck and patience... What will you do in the meantime ?

Usually hernia come from a bad elevation move is not it ? The case for me, not blocking enough the belt to use the legs raising even not heavy things with the back not straight..

Regards
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It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#2024219 - 01/30/13 06:40 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
electone2007 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/13/08
Posts: 274
Loc: Philippines
Glad it went well! Things don't always work out as planned but a surgeon has to tailor the operation to the actual intraoperative scenario.

Take it easy and hope you'll be back to work in no time! :-)

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#2024220 - 01/30/13 06:42 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
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Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Thanks, Isaac and Electone and everyone. It probably came from a lifetime of lifting heavy things, as well as the inherent weak spots in the abdominal wall. I moved pianos for many years before I was a full time tech. I recently helped one of my clients reposition her Mason and Hamlin BB, the heaviest 7 foot piano ever made, in my estimation. Poor decision making skills on my part.... help But I didn't notice the hernia until one day when I was playing catch with my son.

I'll be on line a fair amount, playing the piano, walking, watching the super bowl, all the things I don't have time to do when I'm working on pianos! It's kind of nice to get a break. I don't take enough time off when I'm healthy, just because I'm afraid of forced time off like this. So I'm going to try to enjoy it as much as I can.



Edited by Dave Stahl (01/30/13 06:45 PM)
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#2024236 - 01/30/13 07:13 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Emmery Offline
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Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2447
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Easy on the vicodin Dave, or we will start calling you House.
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#2024308 - 01/30/13 10:14 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4425
Loc: San Jose, CA
Pain is actually not good for you--- unfortunately, I have had plenty of experience with this. The idea that "No one ever died from pain," is simply not true. Of course, over-doing it with narcotics is not good either. My experience with surgery at Kaiser was, that they wanted me--- told me straight up--- to take sufficient medication to control the post-op pain (working with the doc to find the right dosage); particularly, they wanted me to participate fully in a pretty aggressive program of physical therapy very soon after the surgery. They had me at it well before I left the hospital, and for quite awhile afterward.

It was challenging, but good--- they know what makes you get well faster. There is enough suffering in life without borrowing it unnecessarily. Some discomfort is to be expected; that is not the same thing as real post-op pain.

Glad it went well, Dave--- you were out before I knew you were in. My best wishes for your recovery.
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#2024528 - 01/31/13 09:42 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4217
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada

Vicodin contains synthetic codeine. One of the side effects of codeine is constipation that can be countered with probiotics.

Dave you should be able to find this product or similar in the US.
Maybe best to use the pills instead of the fermented milk solution as that would not be so pleasant to consume. Sour milk is what it amounts to.

http://www.biokplus.com/
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#2024538 - 01/31/13 09:52 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Ralph Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/01
Posts: 1300
Loc: Delaware (slower/lower)
Oh, one other thing, ice packs. They work great (for local pain control, not constipation eek).


Edited by Ralph (01/31/13 09:53 AM)
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#2024585 - 01/31/13 11:19 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
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Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
An ice pack is good. Walking is good. It's being in a static position for a great length of time that causes things to stiffen up. As far as de-constipators, I've got a magnesium supplement called "Calm," as well as the prescribed stool softener. Dan, I'll check out your recommendation should I be put in a tight spot.... cry
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Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

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#2025864 - 02/02/13 12:02 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Ralph Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/01
Posts: 1300
Loc: Delaware (slower/lower)
So............. How's it hanging, or, you know, how you doing?
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#2028036 - 02/06/13 11:41 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Ralph]
Dave Stahl Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Hi Ralph. Recovery has been faster than I expected. Follow up appointment was good, bodily functions are functioning functionally. It's still slightly painful to lie down or to get out of bed, but not like the first week.

I only took the Vicodin a few times, but the risk of binding up the innards was scarier than a little pain from the wound.... I've been walking every day, yesterday in the hills near my home.

Yesterday I did a trial tuning on my own piano, a Mason AA. The only physical difficulty with that was hoisting the lid! It's a heavy sucker. I plan to tune a piano for a school today, and possibly another. I'll resume a normal schedule today.

It was actually good to have a week where I couldn't do much. I caught up on my reading, did my taxes, and played a little music.
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Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2028079 - 02/06/13 12:41 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Les Koltvedt Offline
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Registered: 04/13/05
Posts: 3195
Loc: Canton, MI
Glad to hear you on the road Dave.....
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#2028121 - 02/06/13 01:47 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Ralph Offline
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Registered: 12/09/01
Posts: 1300
Loc: Delaware (slower/lower)
Excellent! Your on the mend. It's all down hill from here, or up hill, or, well, you know what I mean.
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#2028131 - 02/06/13 02:04 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Les Koltvedt Offline
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Registered: 04/13/05
Posts: 3195
Loc: Canton, MI
I think it's part of approaching the "over the hill" thingy...
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#2028173 - 02/06/13 03:15 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Dave Stahl Offline
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Registered: 05/06/07
Posts: 1645
Thanks, gentlemen. Next week, it's back on the bike, which is always an uphill struggle. The downhill part is easy!
_________________________
Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net

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#2042768 - 03/04/13 09:50 AM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Ron Broussard Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/19/05
Posts: 28
Loc: Gulfport, MS
Great news Dave on your recovery. I have had 4 hernia surgeries since 1985. Maybe some of the things I have learned will help you.

If you need to cough or sneeze, keep your legs slightly bent and bend your body at the waist. Or, cross you legs sitting or standing.

Also keep your bowels loose, or the strain will start the whole thing again.

I have learned to use my upper body more and my legs less.

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#2333401 - 10/02/14 02:20 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Ron Broussard]
Greg the Piano Tuner Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/16/08
Posts: 43
Loc: Boston
My hernia surgery was two weeks ago, on the 17th. Tomorrow is my follow-up with the surgeon and I'm hoping for a good report. I was told that I'm in pretty good shape for my age...I'm 63 and I swam 1/2 mile a day all summer long. I was allowed to walk up and down stairs right away. I am a middle school music teacher, and just went back to school this week, 10 days after the surgery. Glad to be back...there's only so much TV a person can watch while lying on the couch. I tuned two easy uprights this week, but it will be a long time before I can pull a grand action. I transferred my tuning tools to a messenger bag, which hangs from my shoulder, instead of something I have to carry in my hand. I carry only the most essential tools, and leave everything else in the car. Now I have to get used to having others carry things for me, and not doing the usual household tasks and repairs I used to do; that will be the hardest part for me.


Edited by Greg the Piano Tuner (10/02/14 02:21 PM)

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#2333447 - 10/02/14 04:26 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Jerry Groot RPT]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19472
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Jerry Groot RPT
It is the way to go. smile I've had both ways done. If you like a lot of pain, do it the other way. wink If you don't, then find a good doctor that does it the Shouldice method way. But, while they may "claim to do it" they may not actually do it so, you'll have to do your own homework on it. Again, I can say thanks again to Sparky Biff for giving me that information to begin with.

And, walk walk walk which you already do a lot of anyway Dave. You will be back to work in no time flat. in fact, that doctor told me that I could (believe it or not) go back to work at my normal level pretty much right away. I didn't quite feel up to doing that and so I didn't but, like I said, within a few days, I was working at my normal pace again and without much pain too. I tell you what? It beats being laid up and miserable for 2 weeks any day!

Walking helps tremendously. You will be truely amazed at how much LESS pain you have doing the Shouldice method and then following their directions which was walking 2 hours every day. I walked 15 minutes at a time until I got my 2 hours in the first couple of days.

I traveled to Ohio to have it done. The next day, I drove home with the wife. 8 hour drive from there to here.
I personally know nothing about hernias or various methods of dealing with them, but I was pleasantly surprised when a friend of mine well into his eighties had a hernia operations and said he had virtually no pain afterward. I don't know what type of hernia he had or what the surgical technique was, but perhaps it is the one suggested by Jerry Groot.

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#2333488 - 10/02/14 06:41 PM Re: Hernia Surgery...how long can I expect to be off work? [Re: Dave Stahl]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7901
Loc: France
Had one at 18 took 3 weeks without raising anything heavy.

BTW I recall clearly it was due to bad posture (back not straight, not using legs, not even raising something very heavy)
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It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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