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Carol’s Story: Back to Crocheting After Neurosurgery

Aug 28 2019
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Those living with Fibromyalgia know the importance of having a distraction from the constant pain. Carol Snyder knew she needed surgery after the disorder no longer allowed her to spend time doing the hobby she loves most: crocheting.

The 42-year-old remembers considering neck surgery in 2009 after a suggestion from her doctor. But the pain wasn’t severe at the time, and Carol had learned to manage.

“Surgery is scary,” Carol reflects.

Over the last four years, Carol picked up crocheting and loves making dolls for her five granddaughters. However, her neck, arm and head pain eventually became too intense to crochet. Carol knew it was time to consider her options.

An initial physical therapy visit made it clear surgery was necessary. The nerve roots in Carol’s spine were damaged and her right arm was almost useless. Carol visited her primary care physician, Dr. Steven McCullough, and he referred her to Dr. Jonathan Couch at Mercy Health – Paducah Neurosurgery.

When Carol visited the practice for her consultation, she brought a large crocheted pig stuffed animal to show her care team.

“I told them that I need to be able to do this to keep my mind off my pain,” Carol explains.

Tiffany Cates, APRN, made a quick and positive impression on Carol.

“She was so knowledgeable and had all the information,” Carol says.

Not only did Tiffany answer all her questions, Dr. Couch reiterated everything as well. The entire experience made Carol feel comfortable and ready for her procedure.

Carol’s surgery took place on April 1, 2019 and she returned home a few hours later.

“It was so quick and simple,” Carol says. “They set me up and did all the blood work a week ahead of time.”

Two short weeks later, Carol was crocheting again. She spent that weekend with her family making five dolls with clothes and accessories.

“It seemed so fast. I don’t feel the hardware in here at all, and I move so much better now,” she shares.

Carol officially finished her recovery treatment on July 9, 2019. To those considering a life-changing surgery, Carol says: “Go for it.”

To schedule an appointment with a primary care physician or specialty provider, visit mercy.com.


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