Returning to the Workforce after recovering from AVM

Just wondering how long it takes for some of you to return to the workforce after AVM? My hubby Sean had AVM, embolization, and Gamma Knife in 2003 and 2007 and is now considered fully recovered. However, returning back to the workforce has obviously been a frustrating and overwhelming experience. He use to be a truck driver but now he's gone back to warehouse work since easier, but it just seems that the long gap of no work during his recovery has hurt his work history and caused him to be overlooked by employers right from the start.

How does one recovering from AVM return to the workforce? He's gone through Dept. of Rehab. for vocational training but once he was considered fully recovered, he was left on his own. Should he go back and ask for more assistance? He's now depressed because he cannot find work and I'm now the breadwinner. How can I help him? He's now worried that his AVM may be back too and interfering with his concentration and focus. I keep telling him that his health comes first so he needs to relax and be patient. He's working now but it's only on-call and although he's not working many hours, I need him to stay until his insurance kicks in so he can get a long overdue MRI. But he's even worried now that he may not make probation.

Any thoughts?

I KNOW THAT IT IS VERY HARD TO GET BACK TO WORK AFTER ALL THAT HE HAS GONE THROUGH WITH HAVING LIMITS AND ALL BUT BELIEVE IT OR NOT IT DOES GET BETTER IT TOOK A FEW YEARS FOR ME BUT I WAS PARALIZED FOR ALMOST 2 YEARS JUST DON’T LET IT GET HIM DOWN IT IS VERY DEPRESSING THE BEST THING YOU CAN DO IS SHOW HIM HOW MUCH YOU LOVE AND SUPPORT HIM NO MATTER WHAT

I had a bleed on November 7th, 2009 from an AVM I didn’t know I had. They did a craniotomy and my doctor cleared me to go back to work as a fifth grade teacher by January 4th. It was extremely difficult. I was exceedingly tired and got no support from the administration at my school. Since I am a single mother with three kids, I had to just suck it up. Many days, I come home and can’t get off the couch all afternoon. My advice is to just try to support him as much as you can. Be understanding that he will probably be very tired and weak. I think he should definitely speak to his boss/supervisor to explain the situation to see what accomodations can be made for him. Good Luck!

good gracious Mary Kate…you had like two months to recover??? I had my bleed in April 2009 and I am still out of work…I too am an elementary art teacher…trying to get back to work…but I am having to jump through a lot of hoops right now…but both my husband and I agree that it would be good for my spirit to try and get back around April but just 1/2 time…I cant imagine what you have gone through and then coming home to three children…I am still exhausted around 2pm- I am fighting to over come this- no naps… bless you…

So I have been out of work for a total of 11 months…I will hopefully return half time a year after my bleed…and I expect to work full time starting next school year (Sept). My advice to Sallie…I guess would just to give it some time…I feel like with time I have improved two-fold…and I know he will be fully capable soon…

mary kate said:

I had a bleed on November 7th, 2009 from an AVM I didn’t know I had. They did a craniotomy and my doctor cleared me to go back to work as a fifth grade teacher by January 4th. It was extremely difficult. I was exceedingly tired and got no support from the administration at my school. Since I am a single mother with three kids, I had to just suck it up. Many days, I come home and can’t get off the couch all afternoon. My advice is to just try to support him as much as you can. Be understanding that he will probably be very tired and weak. I think he should definitely speak to his boss/supervisor to explain the situation to see what accomodations can be made for him. Good Luck!

just something to add. Spoke to my neurosurgeon this week and he cut down the seizure meds(Keppra) so I only take it once a day. I used to take it twice and it causes fatigue and weakness and he gave me a prescription painkiller that is acetaminophen mixed with caffeine. I felt a million times better today…The painkiller is called Butal apap I think

mary kate said:

I had a bleed on November 7th, 2009 from an AVM I didn’t know I had. They did a craniotomy and my doctor cleared me to go back to work as a fifth grade teacher by January 4th. It was extremely difficult. I was exceedingly tired and got no support from the administration at my school. Since I am a single mother with three kids, I had to just suck it up. Many days, I come home and can’t get off the couch all afternoon. My advice is to just try to support him as much as you can. Be understanding that he will probably be very tired and weak. I think he should definitely speak to his boss/supervisor to explain the situation to see what accomodations can be made for him. Good Luck!

I had a craniotomy back on July 28, 2005. My neurosurgeon originally predicted that I’d be able to return to work after 2 months of recovery. My AVM turned out to be far worse than anticipated, so I ended up staying being out of work for 9 months! I was fortunate that my employer, a California Community College district, saved my job for me the entire time I was out and kept me covered on medical benefits. I had to put in a special request to the Governing Board, but it was approved. For this, I was very fortunate and I know that not everyone is as lucky. That being said, I work in Human Resources for a County-run institution and am always dealing with the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), California Family Rights Act (CFRA), Pregnancy Disability Leave (PDL), and so on. I am also familiar with various emplpyment and hiring policies. Without going into a ton of detail, I would suggest that you and your husband take a look at California FEHA (Fair Employment and Housing Act). Employers cannot simply turn a job applicant away because they were out of work for an extended period of time if it pertains to medical or disability reasons. Even if you had no intention of filing a claim, showing an employer that: 1. He is qualified for the job, and 2. That he is familiar with statutes like FEHA could be enough to catch the potential employer’s attention.

It’s been rough, but on the plus side, when I stay home, I get soooo bored and restless and depressed. It definitely makes you feel more normal and makes time go faster. I guess it could be worse. At first, they predicted probable death or paralysis following my bleed. So everytime I wake up and don’t go to work I try to tll myself at least I’m alive. Good luck going back!

Georgia Thompson said:

good gracious Mary Kate…you had like two months to recover??? I had my bleed in April 2009 and I am still out of work…I too am an elementary art teacher…trying to get back to work…but I am having to jump through a lot of hoops right now…but both my husband and I agree that it would be good for my spirit to try and get back around April but just 1/2 time…I cant imagine what you have gone through and then coming home to three children…I am still exhausted around 2pm- I am fighting to over come this- no naps… bless you…

So I have been out of work for a total of 11 months…I will hopefully return half time a year after my bleed…and I expect to work full time starting next school year (Sept). My advice to Sallie…I guess would just to give it some time…I feel like with time I have improved two-fold…and I know he will be fully capable soon…

mary kate said:
I had a bleed on November 7th, 2009 from an AVM I didn’t know I had. They did a craniotomy and my doctor cleared me to go back to work as a fifth grade teacher by January 4th. It was extremely difficult. I was exceedingly tired and got no support from the administration at my school. Since I am a single mother with three kids, I had to just suck it up. Many days, I come home and can’t get off the couch all afternoon. My advice is to just try to support him as much as you can. Be understanding that he will probably be very tired and weak. I think he should definitely speak to his boss/supervisor to explain the situation to see what accomodations can be made for him. Good Luck!

Hi all, hi mary kate, i cannot imagine how you cope having three children as well! I know i could not cope with managing children. I think our avms were in the same place? (occipital/parietal).
Work wise, the avm changed my life dramatically. I do voluntary work and courses because of fatigue and stuff, does anyone else do the same? The paid work route DID NOT WORK. I don’t think it works for many who have been through this?

flower
x

My AVM was in the right frontal lobe (not sure what occipital/parietal means)Its not easy…I am just very lucky…when I had my bleed, I was at my parents house… ambulance was at the house in seconds and took me to a hospital that happened to be a stroke center. I wound up having excellent surgeons who operated immediately and there was no damage at all. Just the fatigue from the keppra and the headaches which are improving since I stopped the Keppra this week. Luckily my older 2 kids (age 10 and 7) are wonderful…they help me out with the baby and chores. I can’t imagine what would have happened if the bleed occurred at any other time…there are no good hospitals near my house and who knows if i was home with the kids if they would’ve known to call an ambulance immediately

flower said:

Hi all, hi mary kate, i cannot imagine how you cope having three children as well! I know i could not cope with managing children. I think our avms were in the same place? (occipital/parietal).
Work wise, the avm changed my life dramatically. I do voluntary work and courses because of fatigue and stuff, does anyone else do the same? The paid work route DID NOT WORK. I don’t think it works for many who have been through this?

flower
x