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return to work after surgery/change jobs?

 
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Anna Reply with quote
Trainee Blebber


Joined: 13 Feb 2006
Posts: 42
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 7:59 pm    Post subject: return to work after surgery/change jobs?
 
Hi all,
I'm surprised not much has been written about work, so I take it most people have been able to carry on/ take up where they left off?
I'm in a bit of a dilemma: after my first operation (vats pleurectomy&apicectomy) I returned to work 2 months after the drain finally came out. It was a gradual return, but still quite heavy, as my job is physically and emotionally quite demanding (I'm a midwife like Annie - is sp an occupational hazard for babycatchers? Maybe I unconsciously push with the women! Smile )
Anyway, I had a recurrence after 2 months back at work, had thoracotomy with repeat pleurectomy, and am still off sick at the moment. I am keen to work (not to mention needing the money!), but a bit wary now of throwing myself back into this job, where you just can't take it easy when you need to. I've requested temporarily less strenuous duties, but they are not sure this can be accomodated, and I know that it doesn't really work like that in practice what with staff shortages etc. So I am debating whether to look for a different, more sedentary job for say the next year, just to let things heal and settle more, and then return to midwifery later.
Has anyone here changed jobs because of sp's? Have you been able to take time off if needed when your lungs were playing up? If you changed jobs, did you declare your sp history, and if so, did that have an impact on your employability do you think? I feel a bit like damaged goods at the minute (also because I'm not the youngest), but at the same time there is a fair chance that all will be well now.
I'd be interested to hear your experiences.
Thanks!
Anna
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Gambit Reply with quote
Doctorized Blebber


Joined: 10 Mar 2006
Posts: 118
Location: CA, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 10:42 pm    Post subject:
 
I have a white collar job, no physical stress at all. My personal life, however, involves regular maximal physical exertion. With my current career, medical history makes no difference as long as it's not a terminal illness. This is also a great reminder that SPs, while being a major nuisance, isn't on the same level as, say for instance, cancer. Sometimes we just have to count our blessings even when they aren't obvious to us.

I also have a friend who is a military recruiter, and he said that with pleurodesis there are no issues with me joining the service if I wanted to, since I'm in such great shape now 1+ year after surgery. Ironically, the only thing holding me back from military service is prior laser eye surgery. There is a 2 year wait period for that.
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Ceebee Reply with quote
Site Admin


Joined: 05 Feb 2006
Posts: 212
Location: Norway,Oslo

PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 6:20 am    Post subject:
 
I actually changed my job to more stressfull and demanding situation.
with no sp`s so far.
But i work with computers, so there is not much physical strain.
( i used to be in the army Smile )
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Rossoe Reply with quote
Site Admin


Joined: 05 Feb 2006
Posts: 298
Location: Devon, UK

PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 10:17 pm    Post subject:
 
White collar for me too, but after my first op I was still in education and was able to take a year out which really helped. My current job were excellent in giving me plenty of time to recover from my latest op - I had around 6-7 weeks off. I think it's important to avoid any stress and major physical exertion for the first couple of months.
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DJH Reply with quote
Trainee Blebber


Joined: 04 Sep 2006
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2007 3:49 am    Post subject: returning to work
 
I don't think I want to return to work at all at the moment - I've just had my second pluerodesis 8 - 9 weeks ago and can't imagine having the energy for sax playing and teaching for a long time yet. If I play for five minutes I have to take pain killers. I'll get there eventually but I'll nver consider another line of work. Music is my life and every other type of work bores me senseless.

DJH
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Nubicles Reply with quote
Trainee Blebber


Joined: 24 Jan 2007
Posts: 12
Location: Milwaukee, WI (USA)

PostPosted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 9:06 pm    Post subject:
 
I'm two weeks out of my VATS surgery. I started back at work last week, a couple hours here and there. I feel pretty bad about having been out as much I have in the past two months because I was hospitalized twice for two SPs. Even with my desk job in non-for-profit work, it feels like I should have been there or been able to get more done. I am amazed to see that many of you stayed away from work for several weeks before returning and I wonder if it has something to do with US cultural pressure to keep working no matter. I felt guilty.

Honestly, though I think having a sedentary job five minutes away from my apartment helps a lot with recovery. I've been out a couple times to a bar and to see some gallery shows, and I definitely over exerted myself. Even talking loudly and excited for a extended period of time causes a certain amount of physical discomfort. I can't imagine having to help deliver someone's baby . . .
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grushdeva Reply with quote
Trainee Blebber


Joined: 31 Mar 2008
Posts: 12
Location: Nashville, TN, US

PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2008 8:48 pm    Post subject:
 
(I've been thinking about this a lot lately, so I'm finally replying. This is the third time I've posted today--hope you all don't mind seeing my face all over the site. I wish I'd been more active when I first joined, but I can be a slacker sometimes.)

My second SP decided to take place just a month after I started my current job as a receptionist. While it's not that stressful, and is a salaried position, I'm still missing more work than I'd like due to doctor's visits and days where I'm in so much pain that I'm certain I've had another collapse. I only took two days off from work when I had my chest tube put in--didn't bother asking for more, and of course they weren't going to offer me any time I wasn't asking for.

I'm wondering if I should opt for a part time job that would better accomodate my bad days. I feel so guilty every time I miss work just because I'm hurting.
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Anna Reply with quote
Trainee Blebber


Joined: 13 Feb 2006
Posts: 42
Location: UK

PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 4:27 am    Post subject:
 
Hi Grushdeva,
2 days off after needing a chest tube seems a bit short! I can understand you are reluctant to take time off if you have just started a new job, but talk to your doctor and occupational health department/person if your employer has one.
It took me quite a while to fully recover from the 2 operations I had (I started this thread), but now, 2 years on, things are fine. In the first few months after I went back though, I was in so much pain and so exhausted that I told work I had to resign. Luckily a less strenuous post had come up, so I did that for a couple of months, and then went back to my old job.
I hope you can negotiate something with your employer without having to resort to finding another job.
All the best
Anna
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sarahd Reply with quote
New Member


Joined: 28 Feb 2008
Posts: 6
Location: Uk

PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 7:47 pm    Post subject:
 
Hi everyone. Im glad this topic is here.
I quit my job after my first (and touch wood last) diagnosed SP. It was office work and far too much stress, I still to this day put my SP partly down to stress related....
So I decided to move to London...and ive ended up with an equally stresful job.....think I should change profession soon! . I had 3 months off work, before I got my new job but I havent told them that I have had an SP. Its been playing on my mind. I didnt have to declare any problems so decided not to volunteer the information. Now im wondering whether I should tell them, I know it shouldnt affect my job status, I just dont want to be 'damaged goods'.
I guess my query is , is it a good idea do you think to tell them, in case it happens again and i need urgent medical assistance?
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Anna Reply with quote
Trainee Blebber


Joined: 13 Feb 2006
Posts: 42
Location: UK

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 9:11 am    Post subject:
 
Hi Sarah,
I think it totally depends on whether it impacts on your day-to-day ability to do your job. If it does, then perhaps your employer should be aware, but as you got this job after your SP and didn't tell them, they may not feel that they should make adjustments to accomodate you. It is also hard to prove that stress is a contributing factor. Most work causes stress of some kind. Maybe reducing your hours a bit is an option?
But if it doesn't impact on your ability to do the job, I don't see why they need to know about you having had one SP.
Anyone in your office could need urgent medical attention, that is not something you or they can prepare for.
It would be a shame to limit yourself out of fear of what might be. You may never have another SP, and even if you do, you can cross that bridge when you come to it.
all the best
Anna
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sarahd Reply with quote
New Member


Joined: 28 Feb 2008
Posts: 6
Location: Uk

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 12:14 pm    Post subject:
 
It doesnt affect my day to day work so Im not going to tell them. You have made some very good points.

THanks for your advice.
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branthemosherman Reply with quote
New Member


Joined: 09 Jul 2010
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 11:08 am    Post subject:
 
After my surgery (double pleurodesis at the same time) I took 4 weeks off work, and I don't think that was long enough as it was only a few months later that I was laid off.

I was only on a computer typing as well.

Then I quickly found another job but it was not my lungs causing the problem this time it was the muscles, so I think, and so that job did not last long, and then a year! out of work and I'm back working, the only problem I have now is of course, if I lift anything too heavy and my stamina if I'm doing something for too long, but it shows that I really needed more than 4 weeks initially off, but that was my first job as I had the surgery when I was 20
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Stickman Reply with quote
New Member


Joined: 14 Apr 2011
Posts: 1
Location: Melbourne

PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 6:33 am    Post subject: Positive outlook on job change
 
My response to this old but worthy topic-

Like most SPers, ( I gather) I scrutinised my occupational activities for a possible cause of the SP.
I am a goldsmith ( I make jewellery)- and consider it a possiblity that blebs/ bullae might be formed by exposure to various chemical fumes or particulate matter that are typical to my job.

Conversely, I am aware that the blebs/ bullae may form without outside causes.

Still, being unable to ascertain anything for sure, Ive decided to change my job- at least to eliminate breathing fumes/particles.
I'd love to keep going with my jewellery design and manufacture business,
Its what I love doing and have spent many years building up.
But- if there's any chance its causing SP- I got to change.

This is pretty daunting because Im the bread-winner for a wife and 2 kids.

Being POSITIVE- I think this may be an opportunity for me to do better with my work- to be more ambitious, employ other people, take on a more managerial role, get off the tools. I wasn't really motivated to take these steps before my SP#2 and Pleurodesis. Maybe it'll be the best thing, employment-wise, that ever happened!

If you feel that you need to change your job because its dangerous, or strenuous, or stressful- I wish you all the best!
Maybe it will be an amazing success story.
Re-invent yourself- that's what humans are good at- it is possible.
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