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Oy vey - I gave myself a hernia....

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by mikopita, May 3, 2010.

  1. mikopita

    mikopita Supporting Member

    Feb 22, 2007
    So, after years of hauling around old SVT's, V4's and 8x10's, I gave myself a hernia (inguinal). I had the repair surgery last week (full not laproscopic), and now have been presented an opportunity to play with a seriously tight, up and coming band.

    The dilemma is that their next upcoming big gig where I really should be, is in 5 weeks. My doc says that I'll be ok to lift up to 20 lbs. by then, but recommends I go easy. I plan to.... but I'm wondering what I should expect and what I can get away with. I'm an active bassist and really groove physically (not crazy-like, but to feel the groove). I already will have help moving my gear.

    Are there any folks who've gone through this (there have to be, I just couldn't find a single one in a search)? Should I plan to sit the entire gig? If so, will a barstool work to lean/sit on? Should I bag the gig and wait? They currently have a keyboard player holding down the bass... but this is definitely not what they want :smug: . Should I look into any special kind of strap or harness? Is there some kind of clothing I should consider wearing? I 'm just curious to see what kind of feedback I get.
  2. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    If the gig's not for 5 weeks, and you've already had a week since the surgery, you should be fine. I had a really big tear with my inguinal some years back; while you may want to have some extra padding where your bass might hit your scar area to avoid pain, you probably won't be at any risk for tearing the stitches if you don't go overboard or lift too much weight. I was lifting more than 20lbs a few weeks after with little discomfort. A bass didn't hurt to wear, as it was a supported, dispersed weight- it's not like the strain you get from lifting something that may involve using your abdomen. Try to eat right to help your body heal faster as well.
  3. mikopita

    mikopita Supporting Member

    Feb 22, 2007
    Hey, thanks for moving my thread. I figured it should go somewhere else but wasn't sure.

    It's been 5 days since my surgery, and the gig's just shy of 5 weeks, but that's good news. I can't see myself doing that now (I still feel like someone kicked me in the jewels... repeatedly), but it's good to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel (at least as far as this gig goes). There's a possibility of national tv time with this group, so I want to get up to speed as quickly as possible without sacrificing my sound and style.
  4. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Yeah....coughing was the worst. Getting the bandage removed was actually just as painful :D Just stay off your feet as much as possible, and you should be fine.
  5. You'll need someone else to move ALL the gear, but you should be OK with the weight of the bass. No jumping, no twisting, no being Pete Townsend. You can move, but keep your "style" cool, not radical.

  6. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Oh- one more thing. If you drop something, pick it up slooooowly. Any sharp movements, even after you're mostly healed, can send a quick little jolt of pain.
  7. I have had a recurring inguinal hernia - the first one was prolly genetic - and the second one was from not heeding the doctor's orders.

    NO LIFTING and that means NONE! You've gotta find a service monkey or something in the meantime! Since I got the second one - I am now forever and ever forbidden to carry anything over 5-lbs not including my clothes. So if I have to go over the 5-lb limit, I have to start shedding clothing.

    Not a pretty sight.

    Sit down and let everyone else in-out for you and take it really easy when you have to reach off center and that means you are putting yourself at a mechanical disadvantage and you are actually trying to hold yourself AND the weight and that means trouble if you do it wrong.

    I had a body-mechanics course at the Loma Linda VA for this and it's a lot of grief if you screw yourself up. Triple grief!

    No more bowling either.

    Balance your loads equally on both sides at the same time.

    Even stationary use of weight bearing muscles can cause damage. In other words, just holding an object over your weight limit that somebody hands you counts too - it's not just picking things up and/or putting them down.
  8. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Find yourself a roadie for the first gig. Friend or even the child of a friend. $50 to a kid will certainly get good service and may even spark interest in him playing music.
  9. oldrookie


    May 15, 2007
    Avon, IN
    Thought this was a thread about the Peavey T-40.

    Looks like you are getting plenty of knowledgeable advice, so I'll confine myself to good wishes. Hope you get well and can keep grooving.
  10. Rocky

    Rocky Banned

    Jul 21, 2000
    Los Angeles
    Do yourself a big favor and hire a roadie!
  11. All good advice so far. Seems like you have a decent amount of healing time before the gig. Just make good use of that time, get better, and take it VERY easy at the gig and you should be fine.
    I would recommend that you have a chair/stool available onstage. Just in case you start feeling uncomfortable during the set, you should definitely give yourself the option to sit down if you need to.
  12. PWV

    PWV Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 28, 2006
    I'm getting the laproscopic a week from today, got the inguinal and one on the umbilical (sp?). One hurts like crazy, the other one I didn't even know I had. With the lapro, Dr. says 2 weeks til normal activity - I'm wondering if I should cancel on the gig for next Friday (4 days post-surgery) or go with "Who's-my-friend-and-roadie" option?

    Glad to hear you're on the mend with a cool gig coming up down the road!
  13. Find someone to help you to move gear for the near future.

    And remember, lift with the legs ;)
  14. mikopita

    mikopita Supporting Member

    Feb 22, 2007
    I really do appreciate the feedback. It sounds like my gig is a go at this point since I have a couple of friends who regularly tag along at gigs and are willing to move my gear. I'm likely going to play my RBV, which is no small bass, so I was concerned that maybe it might be too much bass for me by then... but I think I'll be fine.

  15. Have a stool or chair of some variety near at hand incase you find it easier to play the gig sitting?
  16. guroove


    Oct 13, 2009
    Buffalo, NY
    Glad to hear you got the gig. Just some food for thought here, but Geddy Lee doesn't even use amps anymore, just the sansamp. You can get a tiltback amp and use it as a monitor for yourself, or just make sure the sound guys know to put lots of bass in everyone's monitors. As for standing vs. sitting, I'd play it safe and get a stool if you're still feeling discomfort.
  17. mikopita

    mikopita Supporting Member

    Feb 22, 2007
    ^^^ Yeah, I'm not entirely opposed to simply running direct with my Sadowsky pre... but if at all possible I love to feel my cab.
  18. I've had two incisional ventral hernias stemming from an open appendectomy last year. Literally the entire lower right of my abdomen is now mesh. I would highly recommend taking an extra couple weeks after they say that you CAN lift before actually doing so and taking it extremely easy when you do start. These sorts of things tend to be easy to recur once they've opened up once.
  19. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    3 inguinal hernia repairs here...two laproscopic, one full incision. On X-ray, I have more mesh in my gut than a screen door. Tim / guitarist has had rotator cuff surgery so we're a fine pair. We use the two man / four hand approach with anything of size.

  20. THand


    Jun 9, 2008
    This ^

    I went in for a double hernia operation...they wound up repairing 4 instead of 2 once they had me opened up. I pushed too hard during the recovery period, and I still have sharp pains on occasion as a result. That was in 2004...six years ago!

    Use a DI for a while, take a stool to give yourself a break, and squirrel away a few pain pills just in case.

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