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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: 1308
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: 1190
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: 3562
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: 3854
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: 261
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: 261
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: 2365
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: 261
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: 4919
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: 4414
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: 1955
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: 1298
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: 2365
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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No one home?
by ScottM
Yesterday at 08:05 PM
Prokofiev's 5 piano concertos, live: Marinskij/Gergiev etc
by fnork
Yesterday at 07:36 PM
Has anyone here studied with S. Babayan
by Serge Marinkovic
Yesterday at 07:05 PM
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