Oct. 8: Post-surgery update

My port placement surgery yesterday was uneventful—the best kind. I’m home now.

Although my dear friend Margaret wasn’t my surgery nurse this time, she assured me beforehand that the nurse I had was a good one. I also had a nice surprise when I got to the operating room, when I saw a former coworker (and Oliver’s first human momma!) was working. She held my hand until the anesthesia kicked in. I tell ya, if you want to feel pampered and cared for, have surgery in a hospital where you know lots of people. It makes the whole experience much nicer. That is, until you throw up all over them; then it’s just embarrassing.

(I would assume.) For the record, I threw up on NO ONE at the hospital. I waited until I got home.

The last thing I remember in the OR was skooching over to the operating table. The next thing I knew, my surgical team woke me and I was in post-op. I asked them if I could live-Twitter my surgery. Someone chuckled and said my surgery was over, and I turned to the surgeon and asked if he was going to live-Twitter my surgery. I don’t know why this Twittering idea came into my head at the very moment I came out of the anesthesia, but I cannot possibly express how embarrassed I was when I remembered it later. I’m not only one of those goofy idiots who can’t shut up under anesthesia; I also revealed to all of them that I’m a total nerd. Gah.

My short stay nurse later told me that I was in the operating room for 13 minutes—super-speedy surgery, huh? I had propofol as my anesthesia. That is some amazing stuff—it’s really quite easy to come out of it; never mind that it makes people (me) say dorky computer geek things. Once I was in my short stay room, I was given graham crackers and ice water. It was about 11 a.m. by then, so it had been more than 12 hours since I’d eaten and I was starving. I texted Victor that I needed coffee and he brought a big cup to me right away. I took one sip and knew I wasn’t going to keep those crackers down.

For the next three hours I fought off a tremendous headache and nausea. The headache was hunger-related and sinus-y (I wasn’t allowed to use my nasal spray that morning, as I usually do when I wake up all stuffy), which in turn was causing the nausea. Contributing to the headache was my blood pressure, which was higher than usual because I was told not to take my dyazide that morning. I hadn’t been able to have caffeine that morning either, of course, so that had something to do with my headache too. It was kind of a vicious circle, though: I needed to get something in my stomach to help with the hunger headache, but I was nauseous so it was hard to keep food down, which was stressing me out and making my blood pressure go even higher, which was making my headache worse, which was making me more nauseous, so I was given Vicodin for the headache but I didn’t have enough food in my stomach so it made me more nauseous. (Have you read If You Give a Mouse a Cookie? That’s the icky version of that story.)

Besides spending a lot more time in short stay than we’d thought I would, most everything went well. It wasn’t until I got home that I kinda fell apart. I took one bite of real food (pasta) and was suddenly very glad I’d nabbed that emesis bag as I left my hospital room. I spent the rest of the evening eating saltines and water between long, drug-addled dreams.

During the night I woke up and discovered that the numbness around my incision had worn off and I was feeling every movement in that area. Ouchie! I threw back a couple Vicodin and slept a good eight hours. I was able to keep breakfast down this morning, thanks to Zofran, and slept another several hours. I’m not getting anything accomplished today, but it sure is nice to get some long overdue rest.

In fact, I’m about ready for another nap. It’s bad that I’m enjoying this so much, isn’t it? Meh.


  1. Sorry for the pain; sorry for the nausea; sorry for every and all discomfort; but DID YOU TELL ANY FAMILY SECRETS WHILE UNDER????

  2. Love that you asked to live-twitter the surgery! That would have been pretty cool!

    Hope you have had a good recovery since the post.


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