Right Styloid Surgery 1/27/2020

My husband had surgery in Tampa, FL on 1/27/2020 to remove his right styloid process. His pain level 24-hours after surgery is manageable with minimal medication. He’s got a bit of swelling late today above the incision area and his ear, cheek, jaw, and neck are numb, but overall, he is feeling better than we could have hoped so soon after surgery. He even played his guitar today, which shocked me!

It’s taken us three years to get to this point, to actually have what we think is the correct diagnosis for all the crazy symptoms, and now surgery completed. After all the incorrect paths we’ve gone down with different medical specialties, the shoulder shrugs, the outright disbelief of some physicians that there was a problem and being told it was probably psychological, I’m almost afraid to be optimistic that my husbands pain and symptoms might be gone once he heals from the surgery. It’s been such a long, exhausting journey.

As we move forward with his healing, I will add updates. I hope to share in the near future that he is well and his symptoms no longer exist, and that ES was the answer we were looking for over the past three years.

Be well, and please keep us, especially my husband, in your thoughts. Hoping our lives return to normal and that he finally feels like himself again!


Hi HockeyWidow~

You have every reason to be optimistic. ES surgery can be transformational early on. Here are a couple of things to keep in mind: In the first 24-48 hours post op, the anti-inflammatory & pain meds used during surgery are still in a person’s system so pain levels may be lower during that time than later in the first week. Days 3-5 are generally when the internal & external swelling is the worst, & thus, the pain can increase substantially during that time. It’s a good idea for your husband to stay on whatever pain medication regimen is working for him through that period. Ice! Ice! Ice! (15 min. on & at least 45 min. off) & significant head elevation during sleep will also help. As the weeks pass, he will likely notice some days are better than others & some symptoms that are gone will come back (but they will leave again). Nerve healing takes time & seems to be a two steps forward/two steps back proposition some days. DO NOT be discouraged by this. It’s part of getting better. By the end of two weeks, he’ll likely feel pretty ok & by the end of two months his energy should be fully returned & many of his symptoms will have subsided. It can take up to a year (or longer) for nerves to fully heal so keep that in mind as well.

I’m really happy to hear your good report this soon after surgery. Keeping a positive mindset (even on “bad” days) will go far toward quicker healing. It sounds like you’re a great advocate for him. I’m glad you joined the forum so you could acquire tools you need to help him. I applaud you for that. :blush:

Great news, hope that he continues to recover well! Lovely he was able to play the guitar!
I think Isaiah has covered everything, so will just add my best wishes & prayers for continuing improvement!

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Thank you, Isaiah. I keep hovering and waiting for his pain and swelling to increase. I am sure he will be happy that I return to work today! I was surprised when his doctor hadn’t written a prescription for pain for home but made sure we had something before leaving the hospital. He is on the reclining couch so he can easily elevate his head, guitar is next to him, and one of our dogs seems to be staying on his lap for the duration! Ice and meds. are ready for when needed.

This forum has been extremely valuable for me to prepare to help him. The information shared by everyone has really helped me to know what to expect as we go forward and I am thankful that I stumbled across the group.

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Good energy flowing your way HockeyWidow! 3 years is quite the journey, and I’m sure the daily anguish he had to endure was just overwhelming (for both of you). Healing thoughts, please do keep us posted!

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Well, day 3 started with my husband having increased swelling, pain, and bruising. Thanks to this group, we were as ready as we could be with lots of ice and making sure to take meds. on schedule. The swelling and bruising was isolated to just above the incision but now include the right side of his face and down to his collarbone. I am a little concerned for Saturday as he plans to return to work for 1/2 day. He can delegate most things and stay in his office with ice; he is determined to go.

Follow-up with the doctor is 2/6, but so far post-surgery things seem to be on track.

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YUP, HockeyWidow, your husband is in that 3-5(or 6) day window where the swelling & pain ramp up. He will feel MUCH better in another week & almost normal by 1-2 months post op. Resting & listening to his body will be his best friends through the end of the first 2 weeks post op & will help him recover more quickly. If he’s determined to go to work then so be it. Hopefully he’ll come home early if he feels too awful.


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