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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

My Hysterectomy

On December 6, 2010 I arrived at the hospital at 8am for my LAVH (laprascopic assisted vaginal hysterectomy). I was terrified because I had watched an episode of Grey's Anatomy where Mandy Moore played a patient who underwent an easy operation but never woke from anesthesia. So, I was terrified of not waking up. I went as far as to give my husband instructions for my kids if I didn't wake up.
I'm not sure of the specific timeline because there were no clocks and I wasn't allowed to have anything on me, so I will give a rough estimate how things went.
My husband and I waited in the waiting room for about ten minutes before they took me back minus him. I went to the pre-op room and got into my gown and laid in the bed while they took care of everything that had to be done. I had two nurses working on me. They first checked my bracelets and asked me the same questions over and over. The first nurse tried to put in my IV, but because they have to use such a large needle in case of blood transfusion, she blew the vein in my hand because they are small. That was painful. so, the other nurse started patting on me and found a vein in my arm where she put the needle in, thankfully. They then put pressure cuffs on my legs and let my husband come back to wait.
I'd say we waited for about thirty minutes before the doctor got there and came and told me it wouldn't be long. The anesthesiologist was busy and said he'd meet us in the operating room. I gave my husband my glasses, and a kiss, and they wheeled me away.
Once in the operating room, they went to town sticking things on me and pulling me around, which made me even more scared and I teared up. The anesthesiologist got there right in time to give me some drug to calm me and then the anesthesia. I was out. They didn't ask me to count or give me oxygen or anything like the last time I was put to sleep. It was just instant. My husband said I was probably back there an hour and a half total.
I woke for a couple seconds back in the pre-op room where they took me to recover. I saw my husband and smiled and went back to sleep. The next time I woke was in my hospital room with my husband and one of my best friend's. The nurse told me she gave me a morphine drip and that all I had to do was push a button any time I wanted a hit of the morphine. I was able to push it once every 6 minutes. I still had my IV and a catheter and the pressure cuffs on my legs. I slept most of the day. Later into the night I woke enough to see the flowers my husband had brought me and to tell him I love him. I slept good through the night, waking only slightly every time a nurse came to check on me. At some point the doctor came in, but I hardly remember.
The next day they took out the IV and catheter and made me get up and move around. I was also given Lortab instead of the morphine. I was able to empty my bladder finally. I felt so full with the catheter. A nurse took my blood to run tests to check everything was okay before I was allowed to leave. The results came back that my blood was low and they wanted to do a transfusion, but I told them I'd be fine and would rather just go home and sleep. Since I had ran a fever off and on throughout the night they made me do an antibiotic drip. They allowed me to leave after.
The rest of the day I pretty much slept. My husband filled my prescriptions and went to the grocery to get me some light foods and drinks. He took real good care of me.
The third day I started sleeping less and feeling a little better. I had minimal pain with the medication. I felt really pregnant with all the gas they had filled me with. I didn't have a lot of pain associated with the surgery itself. My belly button area was sore from the incisions. I was more uncomfortable than anything. The biggest issue I had was that my lungs felt really sore and it hurt to breathe. There was worry I could get pneumonia or bronchitis so I was given antibiotics to take for ten days after surgery. I was coughing up flem and running a fever until about the fourth day. Since then I have weened myself from pain meds and am up and moving almost like normal. Today is day 8 after surgery and I have started to have some bleeding and my stomach is more sore. I think I just moved around and did too much yesterday. I am taking it easy and getting better day by day.
I think in the end it will be worth it. I know I could be much worse and am lucky to have no major complications. I am lucky to have such a wonderful husband. He took off work for a week to care for me. Today is his first day back and I miss him.

If you have any questions I would be glad to answer them.

Take Care,
Misty