Friday, 19 June 2015

Recovering - First 48 hours

My recovery from my laparoscopy has been pretty fantastic. No real pain - I had one T3 a few hours after I got home and haven't had any need for pain relief since. When I needed the T3 it was mainly for hip pain (probably from them contorting me around during surgery) and a massive headache more than anything in my stomach area.

I did have a very scratchy, sore throat for about 24 hours. And immediately after surgery all I could think (besides feed me give me water) was how badly I needed to brush my teeth. Ugh, intubation is gross.

I am still quite bloated and full of gas but it's not made it to my shoulders at all so I'm thanking my lucky stars, as that seems to be the worst for most people. I can't say what I'm feeling is pain really...more tenderness or 'awareness' that something isn't quite right. And sometimes I get a feeling in my stomach that is like the feeling one gets before vomiting but without the nausea. It's hard to explain. But not bad at all. I'm wearing my stretchiest clothing for comfort.

I've left my bandages alone for now. My doc didn't give me any post-op instructions so I've been reading what others were told, and the majority of people seem to say they left their bandages on for about 48 hours. So I'm going with that.

I've just been taking it easy. The first maybe 12 hours I found it a bit hard to pee...I really HAD to but it just wouldn't work. Thankfully that resolved and now things are back to normal.Still haven't done #2, but given the bowel prep and my rather light diet day-of-surgery that's not a huge surprise. I'll try to have more water less tea today so I can get things moving.

The only other real symptom I have is a fair bit of blood from my lady-parts. It's like a medium-light day, but bright bright red. I had not planned for this and may need to take a quick trip to the store for some products. Oops.

I should also say that my darling spouse has been fantastic while looking after me. All the love.

Thursday, 18 June 2015

The big day: Laparoscopy

We arrived at BC Women's at about 9:00. On arrival you go into a tiny little admitting alcove where they ask you the basics - name, address, care card number, allergies. Then they give you a hospital bracelet and a red folder with a map on the back that tells you how to get to day surgery. Just sit on the bench, they say, and they'll know to come get you.

Sat on the bench for a bit listening to my empty stomach growl. There was an adorable child with her dad and aunt waiting for mom to have a c-section. The little girl was so impatient to see her baby sister that she started crying. Then, because the new baby was obviously imaginary, they all made plans to get the new one a stuffed unicorn as her first toy. SO CUTE.

Not too long after, a nurse arrived to escort us to bed #7, where I got to change into my always attractive gown and little paper booties. Then I got into the bed and waited and waited and waited.

The nurse came over and went over my consent form, history, allergies, etc. Turns out not only was I having a laparoscopy and excision of any endometriosis, but also a dye hydrotubation. Well, if I can be asleep for something that sounds like an HSG, so much the better. She also gave me a prescription for some T3s and some kind of anti-inflammatory and warned that I may have shoulder pain in a few days.

Then the anaesthesiologist came over and went over the same stuff and made me open my mouth and stick out my tongue to see how intubation would go. She was somewhat concerned and made a joke about using some kind of videogame devise that would make it easier. And then her assistant came over and made me do the same things, and pronounced me fine. Ok then.

The nurse came back to do my IV. She examined both my arms and asked me if I had previous difficulties with IVs. Not that I know of, but I've only had one, and it was in my elbow. She got warm towels for my hands and then tried on my right arm about two inches above my wrist. This involved a small needle for local freezing, and then a larger needle that put a small tube into my arm for the IV. The first time my vein 'rolled' and so the IV went in and then out of my vein again instead of staying in, making the saline go under my skin rather than into my bloodstream. That sucked, a lot. She said she couldn't try again right away because the tournequet would make the first hole start spurting, which we did not want (and there was already enough blood everywhere anyway). So more warm towels, more waiting.

The nurse came back with pills and a tiny cup of water and then left again. Can't remember what the pills were...some naproxin, and something to help with acid in the stomach, if I remember correctly.

A new nurse then came to try the IV again. She used my right hand and her smacking of my vein hurt a lot. And she managed to do the same thing - in and out of my vein. Blarg.

Having exhausted the possibilities of my right arm, I got another warm towel for my left. This time it worked. Thank goodness. And now I sport three large bruises and we all had a good laugh about how I could never be a drug addict because I couldn't manage to find my damn veins.

Waiting, waiting, waiting. My doctor came by to check on bed 6, who was before me. And her procedure was an hour. So lots more waiting.

Then my doctor came to see me, explained the procedure (again) and asked if I had any questions. I didn't, other than to have her fill out my form for missing work (I'm off for up to 10 days). So that was that.

A nurse came by to tell me to use the washroom, which wasn't so fun while trailing the IV along with. Back in bed, and not too much waiting, and then I got to carry my pillow and some blankets with me into the surgical theatre. It was bright and white and COLD. No dignity either - they checked to make sure I wasn't wearing anything under my gown before I could get on the table. But I suppose they would see more of me when I was under, so whatever.

Up on the table, and not for long at all. Soon the anaesthesiolost assistant was asking me where I wanted to go on my "vacation" and I settled on Paris, and then they started talking about raccoons and then apologing when they realized they were supposed to be talking about Paris. We all had a good laugh. Then the mask, with the gas, where I was supposed to take deep breaths. That is actually really hard, and smother-y-feeling, and I didn't like it, but it didn't last long. And then nothing.

I woke up in the recovery room and they took my blood pressure a billionty times and my temperature (35 degrees - get her a warm blanket!) and gave me more drugs when I furrowed my brow because I was feeling a bit crampy.

Wife came in shortly after and got to help wheel me back to where I started. The nurse then came with some photos of my insides. Turns out I had no endometriosis after all, and the hydrotubation worked well so I am fit to go forward with IUI. YAYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!! Guess the hydrosalpinx isn't so bad.

The remainder of my time at the hospital is quite blurry. At one point they wanted me to get up to pee but I was too dizzy and had to lay back down. It took three tries with some breaks in between for me to get up but eventually I did and was able to use the washroom and wipe some of the orange off of me. But man, does that stuff stain. A pair of super sexy disposable undies and a gigantic hospital pad were my souveniers.

Having peed, I was fit to go home. They put me in a wheelchair and the wife took me to our friend's waiting car. Easy peasy. I was awake most of the way home, but with my eyes closed because they were really heavy. And then I napped on the couch and occasionally stared at the television for the rest of the day.  We were all disappointed I wasn't high and silly. No David at the Dentist moments for this girl.

$11.99 Up and Down the Tubes

Bowel prep. Yuck.
I put it off until about 10:30 which is about 1/2 hour before my bedtime. Then I freaked out because what if I was on the can for hours and got no sleep before the surgery? Stupid.

Anyway, got some balls, laid on a towel on the floor, and chickened out. I won't lie. I made my wife help. And then I banished her out of the bathroom whilst my tummy urgled and burbled and was generally unpleasant-feeling.

The box says you're supposed to hold until the urge to vacate is strong, which is supposed to be 2 to 15 minutes. If I said I managed a minute and a half I'd be being generous. Ugh.

What followed was a rather miserable 20 minutes or so on the can. But it worked, I guess. All clean inside.

Then I had a quick bath where I soaked my belly button and washed it carefully with some surgical soap we had around the house from the wife's prior surgery. Then on went a pair of period-panties so if I sharted in the night it wouldn't be a tragedy. And that was that.