This should be my final posting. I felt I should provide a closure to this blog in case I decide in the future to create a book of all the postings.
We returned to see Roth at 6 months (28-Apr-2009), 12 months (27-Nov-2009) and 24 months (01-Sep-2010). Each time the x-rays showed the bone he pasted around my spine was getting stronger.
At 6 months all restrictions were lifted (with the exception of lifting more than 30 pounds). I soon was back up to a mile in swimming, but my bike riding seemed to be restricted to 4-6 miles. My pulse rate was around 40, but I did not get too excited. By the fall of 2009 I returned to my cardiologist with the suggestion that I might be in line for a pacemaker. He agreed, but scheduled me for another echo cardiogram. When I pressed his office 10 days later for some feedback I received a 'form' letter saying everything was OK, and I should continue to take my medications.
Clearly he had dropped the ball. I was aware that a new electrophysiologist, Dr. Islam, was in town, but my life got sidetracked when I assumed the duties of president of the local computer club. By Feb, 2010, I wrangled an appointment with Islam, and after jumping through two of her preliminary test hoops, was able to convince her that I was a candidate for a pacemaker. That surgery was on 27-Apr-2010, and recovery was almost instantaneous. Swimming came back strong, but I could still tell that my walking was not normal. My perceptions were still clouded by the on-going recovery from this back fusion surgery.
Once again I took the bull by the horns and sought some medical advice. The answer came from an unexpected but reliable source. My long term chiropractor Dr. Dense, whom I had not seen since the back fusion, spotted a bad left hip in an August, 2010, X-ray. Thinking I might be seeing some after effects of the back fusion, I moved up the two year back followup date with Dr. Roth. He said the pain was NOT coming from the back surgery. Although he did not have any medical advice on a possible hip redo surgery, Roth did provide me with four names of doctors at Beaumont Hospital who could treat me. (I did return to Cleveland Clinic for the surgery.)
So I parted company with Dr. Roth and his PA Nonie on good terms. I would recommend him in an instant to any person with spinal concerns.