Thursday, June 23, 2016

FINALLY, the Hysterectomy

So, I FINALLY did it, after three docs (beginning when I turned 32) told me I'd probably need a hysterectomy. The only reasons I waited were because of costs and not being really sure that was the answer. As it turns out, I now wish I'd done it YEARS ago!

I returned from our diocesan pilgrimage to the Holy Land last Wednesday afternoon/evening. Last Thursday held a half day or pre-ops and errands and then Friday morning, I was at the hospital at 5:00 AM. One of the pre-ops was actually a surprise and I only found out about it because I returned a call (again) from one office saying that I had just had my pre-op and they were like "no, you have one here too". I was thinking "where exactly is here?" and the rest is history. Seriously, communication is KEY, people. get with it. Both docs and places seemed oddly surprised that I actually had a list of questions to ask. DUH.
For me, if you don't have questions, you're missing out on opportunities - not only to find out what the heck is going on with your own health, but to learn.

It was FREEZING cold there at the hospital and soon after I showed up, about 5 other women did as well, with their families. I was the first one to go in, with these words " Alright ladies, let's get this party started, I'll see y'all on the flip side", hahaha. For the last two years, I have basically been ready to throw my uterus as far away as humanly possible. Seriously, I went into my gynecologist in January and said "I'm done. And by done, I mean D-O-N-E, DONE. I'm not leaving here without a shot or a pill or WHATEVER needs to be done AND a date for surgery because....I'm DONE." She heard me and gave me something...I think it was dimethylprogesterone. It's a hormone that gave me nonstop headaches and by week two numbness in my arms which was causing massive anxiety and I thought I was going to stroke out. So, I stopped that and suffered until my surgery. I had/have three cysts on one ovary, one on the other, a big fibroid, and some little nabothian cysts. I almost forgot to mention the endometriosis which was growing in thickness and probably pathology. As a result of this, my fallopian tubes had to be removed as well and I'm not sure what they did to one of my ovaries, but I'll find out tomorrow at my follow-up. I do remember hearing (while I was still coming out from anesthesia) that something was on it and something about pathology.

I KNEW that leg warmers would eventually come back! Actually these puppies were put on my calves to keep me from getting clots in my legs. Filled with air tubes, each leg alternated with a rolling pressure and it was like a massage. They felt kind of weird, but also kind of cool. 
I woke up and had a bit of doubly / hazy vision, but it wasn't too bad. I had negged for NO narcotic pain meds as they mess with my breathing and I like to breathe. Breathing is good.
So, they gave me Tylenol3 (Codeine) at some point and something else which they shot into my IV. They shot it so quickly that within 4 seconds, I had double vision again and felt weird. After that passed, I declined all medicine and was fine. Since last Friday, I've only had a bit of general discomfort and soreness and a bit of actually soft pain when I've coughed or sneezed. In fact, the worst pain I've felt at all was from the IV sites and the gas pain that was expected (they fill your abdomen with CO2 when you have abdominal surgery). 
I'm afraid I was a wee bit annoying when I got in my room and on my phone
Out of surgery (the procedure went very well), resting, and dining on gourmet ice chips and a bowl of the blackest soup I've ever seen. And there's a lemon thing that looks promising. Thanks Fr. Rob for coming by! In addition to anointing, he was an expert witness so I could get my stuff back. The poor officer! I told him I had $20 in my bag I case I needed to pay off a nurse to bring me a soup I could identify.

Be jealous -"House Made" Lemon Juice! I'm assuming the Sodium Benzoate and Bisulfate are also homegrown... ;-) ~ at Touro's House of Fine Lemony Dining.
Spent one night in the hospital and from what my surgeon had said the day before, many do not, but he likes his patients to stay a night. The worst part about that was asking each nurse to please take out the unused IV on my right hand because it hurt and not having that done until RIGHT before I was discharged. Ridiculous. You know what else was ridiculous? Hospital waste. 
It's a thing.
I did not realize until when I had gone to the bathroom by myself a couple of times that EACH time I had asked for water/ice refills (6-7 times), the nurses had brought me a new container and thrown the old one away. No one had touched in the inside of any containers and it was just for pouring water. I get it that catheters cannot be reused, but what about those fancy leg warmers that only touched my compression-stockinged legs? Tossed in the trash. When I was about to walk out, one of the nurses told me to take the bin of stuff that had been on my desk near my IV. It had been out of reach the whole time and was covered by a garbage bag and no one had mentioned it to me. Inside: Kleenex (which I had badly needed), toothpaste & brush, lotion, dry foam cleanser, and more. Again, communication would be nice, people.
So, where are we?
Right, I'm DONE and in recovery. My actual procedure was the robotically assisted laparoscopic hysterectomy. My recovery period looks something like this:
- Boring....just kidding...or maybe I'm not
- 1-week no driving, but my doc called me yesterday and said driving would be fine for small distances. Of course, one block could kill me in New Orleans with all of these potholes and road issues.
- 4-6 days rough times
- 2 weeks to start feeling "back to normal"
- 6 weeks no lifting anything larger than a gallon jug of milk, swimming, or sexual activity
- avoid bending, pushing, pulling and things like jumping and working out (I avoid working out already). I'm wondering how to stick to that when I have to push/pull myself up
- avoid stairs if possible (yeah, right) or take them slowly, one at a time.
So far, so good! Wish me luck and if you found this and have questions, feel free to email me. If you're in line for a hysterectomy, good luck and godspeed!

No comments:

Post a Comment