Day 1 Post-op

OMG.  I would take hip surgery over laparscopic hernia repair any day.  I was under that assumption that this surgery/recovery would be an easier than my hip….NOT!  I don’t want to move let alone cough.

Yesterday was my surgery.  I was told to arrive at the surgery center at 8:30am for an expected surgery time of 10:30am.  When we got the surgery center we were told we were early and my arrival time should have been 9:30am (I re-listened to the message and it clearly says 8:30am….I could have slept in another hour…oh well), but they would get me back ASAP.  I filled out all my paperwork and then was taken back.  They weighed me and then I changed in to a gown, marked my surgery site, and peed in a cup to make sure that I wasn’t pregnant.  I was then taken to my bed.   They have five pre-op beds lined up along a wall and divided by curtains.  Once in bed my nurse brought me a warm blanket, put a temperature sensor on my forehead, took my blood pressure, and oxygen.  She then proceeded to start my IV.  She was successful without much pain.  She did say I have small veins that don’t like to come to the surface, but at least they are straight.  Once the IV was started she went and got IV fluids and antibiotics.  Since I have so many problems (allergic reactions) to antibiotics they ordered vancomyacin.  The nurse started it very slowly to make sure I didn’t have a reaction.  She made sure the call light was close and reminded me numerous times to call if I was itchy at all.  Luckily, no reaction.  After she made sure I wasn’t going to have an allergic reaction she turned it up.  Next, the anesthesiologist peaked in.  He asked me if I had any major medical problems.  I told him thyroid…he’s like that’s not major, lol.  He’s asked- no diabetes, no heart/blood pressure, etc.  Luckily, I don’t have any of those (although the nurse told me I am too young for all of my issues and I need to become more boring medically!).

After a little bit (around 10:20am) Dr. Leff popped in.  He made sure I had marked the surgical side (left).  He talked to mom and I about what he was going to do….left inguinal hernia repair with exparel injection to the adductor and needle tenotomy.  He told me I was going to have a long therapy road ahead of me.  All of these things he told me pre-op (but my mom got to hear it from him).  We talked about post-op plan. He didn’t prescribe any pain meds…he said take 600mg of ibuprofen every 6 hours and I can pair that with tylenol if needed for break through pain.  He asked if I had any narcotics left from my hip surgery (I do- tramadol and dilaudid)….he said I could take the tramadol if I needed to, but to stay away from dilaudid.  He said after 3-4 days I could go back to Mobic w/ tylenol for break through pain.   He said no driving for 1-2 weeks (no driving until pain free).   No PT for 2 weeks…but at 2 weeks I could start stationary bike paired with walking.  He wants to start gentle hip PT so I don’t lose my hip gains, but wants to hold off on aggressive PT until 6 weeks.  No swimming until 6 weeks (:-/).  I was bummed by this because I just got cleared for swimming at my 6 week hip post-op appointment.  He said to ice (40min on/20 off) until I see him at 2 weeks.  No lifting greater that 10 pounds for 2 weeks (the equivalent to a gallon of milk).

Right around 10:30-35 the OR nurse and nurse anesthetist came in to take me to OR.  We stopped by the bathroom (so they didn’t have to cath me during surgery) and then gave me some versed to mellow me out.  Once in the OR I moved from the cart to the table and the OR nurse wrapped my arms in blankets and placed them at my sides and the nurse anesthetist put a mask over my face and I was out.  The next thing I remember is waking up in the recovery room.  Surgery was right at an hour. At this point I wasn’t in too much pain, but my throat was very sore.  The nurse put some ice on my surgical sites.  I had to cough because of stuff in my throat….boy did that hurt!  At that point I was in pain.  The nurse gave me two vicodin.  I was in recovery for about an hour and then I was walked over to chair (walking was a challenge….I felt very wobbly)  and my mom came back.  The nurse went over post-op instructions with us and then mom helped me get dressed.  I have 3 incisions.  One in my belly button and two below…all centralized.  At that point the nurse walked me to the car and we headed back to Dayton.  I asked mom what Dr. Leff said.  She said my compensation was way worse than what he’d anticipated.  I asked her about the hernia…she said he really didn’t say much about it.  He did say that i’d be in therapy for 1-2 years to get back to baseline.  He also told her that I couldn’t run anymore….and that was a HUGE blow.  I’m still processing that and will talk to him at my two week appointment.

After I got to my parents I took up residents in the recliner and didn’t move the rest of the night.  I was in crazy pain.  They gave me IV ibuprofen in surgery so I couldn’t take anymore until 6:45pm.  So, I took tylenol when I got home and finally gave in to tramadol at 5pm (I can’t take it past 5pm because it keeps me up at night).  I’ve drank a lot of gatorade.  I had some soup (that I’d made and froze prior to surgery.  For dinner I had mashed potatoes and then almond yogurt/granola.  Nothing really sounded good.  The may be TMI, but going to the bathroom is way painful.  Sitting on the toilet alone is no fun let alone trying to pee.  I have been taking both Senokot and Colace in hopes of helping with having a BM.  I had problems with constipation with my hip surgeries and I can’t have that this time around.  I think a lot of the pain is gas pressure trying to escape from the CO2 they pump you full off to inflate your stomach to do the laparscopic surgery.

So, today I am hanging in the recliner with ice on (thankful for my Donjoy iceman from hip surgery).  I am continuing the ibuprofen/tylenol routine, but I had to take tramadol.  I haven’t eaten anything today.  I’ve had a cup of coffee (hopefully will help with BM, again sorry TMI) and some gatorade.  I’m not really hungry.  I am back to using crutches because my adductor is CRAZY sore.  I didn’t want to go back to crutches, but I am struggling to get around.  I need to call Dr. Leff’s office to schedule my two week post-op appointment….other than that I’m just hanging out.  I can take a shower today, but I don’t think I’m up to it!  I may work on dietetic internship applications….we’ll see what I’m up to!

I’ll write more when I have more to share!


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