Tuesday, May 31, 2016

T+7 Weeks (w/ Voice Sample)

It has now been 7 weeks since my SLAD-R surgery at UCLA. 

I finally returned home to Hawaii on 5/15. I took roughly 1 month to recuperate in San Francisco with friends. It feels great to be back at home. 

My voice seems to be gaining some volume in the lower registers. It's definitely stronger in the morning and usually reverts back to a whisper towards the evening. It's still very difficult to speak at restaurants and there's no way I can use a drive-thru yet for my morning coffee. However it's very easy to have regular conversations indoors. I am so thankful there are no spasms. My voice right now feels and sounds like I received a very strong botox shot. 

I continue to apply mederma to my scar 3x a day + mederma PM at night. I don't notice any considerable difference in the lightening of the scar. I hope it gets better over time. All of my friends noted the scar is barely noticeable. 

My energy level is back to where it was pre-surgery. I finally returned back to the gym last week. I made it 4x and it feels great despite losing a lot of strength after being away for more than a month. 

The numbness under my chin is slowly going away. The left side feels a little more numb than the right but there's no pain at all. It still feels a little weird to shave with the area slightly numb. 

I'm pretty happy with the progress and hope I have a much louder and functional voice at the 3-month mark. 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

T+3 Weeks (w/ Voice Sample)

It's been a little over three weeks since my SLAD-R surgery at UCLA with Dr. Berke. 

My voice is still a whisper and it can be very frustrating at times. The most noticeable improvement is my ability to speak more words in a sentence before having to take another breath. Don't get me wrong, I still feel winded if I'm trying to push the words out in a loud environment. But in quiet indoor environments I am noticing I'm able to hold a pretty normal conversation without feeling light headed. 

This week I finally started exercising again. On 5/2 (Monday), I went for a 2.25 mile jog. I was pretty winded after the first mile so I decided to half walk and half jog for the remainder of it. I also did the same on 5/4 (Wednesday) and today 5/5 (Thursday). 

Prior to surgery I would workout 4-5x a week so it felt good to start exercising again but I can't wait to get back in the gym and lifting again. I need to wait about 1 month post op per Dr. Holliday before lifting heavy weights. 

I still need to be mindful that I don't gulp down liquids too quickly. Other than that, I have been eating and drinking as normal. 

I am able to touch the incision site with no problems. I apply mederma 3x a day in addition to mederma PM before I go to bed. My bottom neck line present before surgery is still more prominent than normal which I'm presuming is from slight post surgical swelling which I can feel when I touch the incision site. It's not painful but just slightly tender and numb to the touch. The scar is a little dark and I'm hoping it will lighten over time. I posted a closeup and regular shot of the incision site below. 

I'm still recuperating in San Francisco and return back to Hawaii on 5/15. 

Incision site
Incision site (close up)