Friday, April 13, 2018

Post-Panniculectomy

So it happened!  The surgery actually happened!!  To be clear, the exclamation points are out of excitement for the fact that there wasn't another delay.  It is not indicative of me feeling top notch.  Surgery was just a week ago, mind you...

The day went fairly smoothly.  I got there and spoke with the typical dozen people telling them the same information, but I'd prefer that than to have them make mistakes.  The surgeon came in and I held my breath has he lifted that sagging skin, praying (even though he cleared me 2 days prior) that he would still be comfortable with what he saw... and he was!

Evidently surgery took around an hour and a half and he repaired a small hernia I had while he was in there.  I woke up in a fair amount of pain - as expected.  I mean, a hip to hip incision is going to cause some pain.  For the first 12 hours (maybe) I got morphine to help with the pain.  As soon as I had some food in me and my nausea calmed down they switched me to an oral med of some sort.  It's sort of blurry.  I did spend the night in the hospital.  The surgeon showed a picture to hubby of the skin he removed.  It was 5 lbs and about 3 ft long!  I'm so eager to see what I look like when my body returns to its new normal!

My doctor is so kind.  Either my nurse or med tech told me that he called Saturday  morning to find out how my night was.  And then he came in himself to discharge me on Saturday.  I'm pretty sure I was the only reason he came in.  He wasn't in a lab coat and was very relaxed (not that he isn't always).

Saturday afternoon I came home and have been chilling out here at home recovering.  I have these surgical drains and they're pretty much of a headache.  I have to empty them every 8 hours and track the output.  When I was discharged, the doctor initially said that he wanted to see me on Wednesday, but after (I assume) reading the nursing notes he said that he wasn't thrilled with the drainage output and wanted to see me on Monday instead.  I admit I was a little freaked out.  I am that person... the person who falls in the small percentage of side effects or risk factors.

I saw the doctor on Monday.  Hub's new job has been a true blessing, as he's able to work his schedule around these appointments as long as he gets his hours in.  So he took his lunch break and a little extra to get me to the doctor and then just worked a little later that day -- all from home.  A true blessing.

So now I have these drains, like I said.  They come out of me in a very awkward place and at the end of them are these grenade shaped bulbs which collect the fluid.  I've been sleeping a fair amount, but I figure that's pretty common after a big surgery.  I have stayed awake during the daytime, but have been in bed for 12 hours.  The past couple of days I've emptied the drains at 6 hours since I seem to be downstairs for about 12 and figure the halfway point would be better.  Today, however, I decided just to do them at 12 hours - when I come downstairs and when I go back up.  I'll see what the output is like at that point.  It's a bit atypical for me to not follow doctors orders to the letter, but as long as I'm documenting them and the output has lessened from last weekend (and it has), I see no harm in it.

So now I have this incision from one hip to the next along my bikini line.  I have internal stitches and some sort of adhesive medical glue on the outside, which is starting to peel.  My belly button seems to be in an odd place, but when I saw the surgeon on Monday he said that I'm still about 70% swollen so we'll see when my abdomen settles down where my belly button falls.  It's weird, isn't it?  To think about where a belly button is?  It's weird.  But so am I... so there ya have it ;)

Starting Tuesday I didn't take a pain pill first thing.  Then Wednesday it wasn't until 3 pm that I needed it.  Last night at 10 pm the pain started to get really intense so I took a pill before going to bed.  So far today, it's not quite 9:30 pm an no pain pill, although I'm itchy as all get-out so am taking some Benadryl.  Thankfully a Facebook group I'm in mentioned having this on hand, so I got it before surgery!

My biggest thing now is the drains and praying that the surgeon will ok their removal on Monday.  I'm in better shape than I expected, but am still moving very gingerly.  Getting comfortable isn't always easy, but thankfully I have a special recliner for my back and can adjust it as I need.  My appetite is fine and I'm still getting in my 64 oz of liquid every day - no problem!  That answers those questions LOL

4 comments:

  1. Wow, this reads really calm and relaxed. I hope that's truly how you're feeling, too! I really need to lose these last few pounds so I can start researching this for myself. Thanks for the update!

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    1. You can totally do this, girl! If I can, anyone can. You have the athletics to go with your eating plan so you're a step ahead of me. One of these days soon, we really should catch up!

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  2. Sounds like you are doing great! So happy for you!

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    1. Thanks, Leigh! I really appreciate it!

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