Thursday, August 7, 2008

My Open RNY Surgery, August 4th, 2008

I am home from the hospital and feeling up to posting but I just posted a long recap of my surgery to my site so member could see how I did, so I am just going to paste that post here. Sorry, if I had more energy I would put up more details lol.

I've been too tired since getting home to post much but I am feeling better at the moment so I wanted to share my surgery experience.

I got to Henry Ford hospital (in Wyandotte, Michigan) early. My appointment was for 10:15am but I got there with my mom and 16 year old daughter around 9:15am. My other kids stayed home to help take care of my 7 year old who has special needs. So anyways, we were given a buzzer. The first buzz meant they were asking me to come in and the second was for my family after the surgery was over. I saw Dr Hendrick, my surgeon, come out and speak to Denise's family. Her mom, dad and husband were there...all very nice people! We spoke to them after and heard Denise was doing well. I felt so relieved to hear that. I was called in shortly after that.

The nurses there were sooo wonderful and I was just so amazed at how things are run there. I must say I much prefer there to our Windsor hospitals. The nurses told me that Dr Hendrick was a fantastic doctor but also very serious about his patients following his rules. The nurses also told me that Dr Hendrick has the nicest patients out of all the surgeons there and they always ask him where he finds us lol.

I was fixed up with two IV's, that is what he wants. One bruised me pretty badly but didn't hurt. I then had the team come in to talk to me and then Dr Hendrick. I felt very calm going in. The anesthesiologist gave me something to calm me down anyways and I don't remember anything after that lol.

Next thing I remember is waking up, being told I did really good and was fine. They moved me to my room which I barely remember as I was so groggy. As soon as was possible they allowed my mom and daughter in the room. My mom told me then what Dr Hendrick had told her about my surgery. I guess when he was telling her she burst into tears, my mom is NOT a crier, but I really am fine. First, the surgery took about 2 hours instead of just 1-1.5 hours. My liver was fatty which I kinda expected, all that damned fast food! He also told my mom that I am one of those rare people who grows fatty deposits on the inside of my body as well as the outside of it. He then told her what scared her. He said my uterus is enlarged and as soon as I am well I need to get that checked out. He told me later it could be fibroids but it definitely needs to be checked. I think my mom lost it cuz my aunt, my dad's sister just found out in November she had breast cancer, by January had a double mastectomy and was on chemo and radiation up until last month. So of course my mom was scared it could be cancer or something very serious. My mom has also worked in hospitals and for doctors most of her life so she knows what could go wrong.

The first day I was more or less out of it. Very groggy and slept a lot. By midnight they had me dangle my feet over the edge of the bed, making me a bit dizzy but not bad. I had an On-Q Pain Buster pump attached to me, it sent pain meds right to the incision site. I also had liquid dilaudid in an IV. I also had a binder around me to hold it all in lol.

The nurses were sooooo wonderful, anytime I needed them they were right there and so nice. My parents were up to see me one night and I pressed the button for a nurse. They were amazed she showed up in my room immediately. Back in Windsor you never see that lol.

The second day I started to walk, had my catheter taken out first (no big deal), and walked the length of the hall and back. It's not a small hall either. We had to walk that 10 times a day. They marked it off on a board in our room. I was going to the bathroom ok, voiding that is, no bm yet and if none by friday I have to take some milk of magnesia. I was walking slightly bent over.

Let me tell you what to pack. NOTHING! I seriously never touched my suitcase lol. I was not allowed a shower until I got home and the gowns they had there were so nice and comfy, roomy with no back panel showing ass lol. In other words, they cover you right up. I am normally the type who wants to be in my own clothes but I really didn't mind.

By the third day I was getting ready to go. I was on one of my "walks" when my doctor caught me and sent me to my room so he could talk to me about going home. I tried to sneak past him as he was writing something down but then I heard "Where are you going?" So back to my room I went lol. He asked me if I had any questions which I didn't. I think the only question I ever asked him was if he sutured and stapled, answer was yes. So I was told I could go home anytime. I called my mom up to tell her. The nurses then showed me how to empty the drain that is attached to me, easy as pie and not bad to look at lol. They also made sure I knew how to give myself the Lovenox, blood thinner shots, in my tummy.

I asked for a wheelchair to leave, only cuz I still felt a bit nervous about getting dizzy. My mom helped me into her van and away we went. Easy ride home across the border too!

I came home to everyone being so gentle with me, like I was fragile lol. I've always been a trouper though. My dogs were so happy to see me, my husky kept licking me and staring at me nervously like he wanted to make sure I was ok lol.

Once things settled down I had my boyfriend come help me in the bathroom with things. I was afraid to fall more than anything. He was so good about it all lol. He really didn't mind too much helping me to go or anything but reminded me he MUST love me to do this lol. Then I emptied my drain and gave myself my shot. My boyfriend told me then he was glad I was the independant type because that would have been too much for him lol, he's a bit squeamish!

My first night was not too bad. I slept in my daughter's hospital bed but found the mattress was too soft right now for me so I moved to the couch for now. I have had a bit of pain but it's more like pulled tummy muscles. I am having more of a hard time getting anything in. I take little sips of 50% water 50% pure apple juice. I am awake more now and try to get my walking in. I walk around my kitchen and living room lol, figured out that a mile is about 2000 steps so I am aiming for that right now. I seem to have to pee a lot (tmi I know lol) and not much comes out.

My breathing is getting better but I need to use my breathing apparatus more. See, in open RNY they collapse part of the left lung (or it just collapses on it's own, I forget which) so afterwards I felt short of breathe but the more you do the breathing exercises the better it is.

Anyways, that is my long surgery story lol. Sorry it's so long but I figured it is going to be helpful for those about to have surgery to hear it all from someone who just went through it, while memories are fresh. The pain really isn't that bad and the binder I am wearing helps a lot. The worst pain I have had so far is a huge headache!

So, hope you all got something out of this. I might not feel 100% yet but it's tolerable and I know that day by day I will get better. I go back to my surgeon on Tuesday to get my drain out and half my stitches.

Pretty soon I will be posting my wow moments so stand by!