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csziggy

(34,153 posts)
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 05:03 PM Nov 2021

Survived yet another operation - but the recovery is kicking my butt

I had a mid-line hernia repair on Friday - but the CT scan that diagnosed it was done back in June. there were delays due to having to be cleared by by cardiologist which finally happened in mid August but then the Covid cases had filled up the hospital and I couldn't get scheduled until last Friday.

During all those delays, the rupture in the abdominal muscle got bigger and fairly recently a loop of intestine worked its way through a tear in the muscle. The surgeon said he was surprise anything was getting past that loop. I knew over the past few weeks there had been more discomfort and suspected something was very wron.

To strengthen the area, the surgeon put in a piece of mesh about the size of a sheet of paper. This means the skin had to be loosened to spread the mesh out. It was all done via laparoscopic so I have seven little holes and one incision scattered all over mu tummy. They've got me on oxycodone so I have slept most of the time since getting out of the hospital Saturday. Usually I hate taking that stuff because it makes me groggy and stupid, but right now it is a blessing.

In fact, right now I need to take another dose and another nap.

On the other hand, Khufu, my new kitty, has figured out that he can't jump on my tummy but have found ways to drape across other parts of my body to be close to me. Khufu is a very cuddly kitty and a big comfort. He's settling in with the other cats, trying to make friends with them. While they are not ready to be friends, there have been no big confrontations or fights. Lucas, our largest cat who is a bully, acts like he is afraid of Khufu - I think because Khufu does not run away from him. So we get views of five pound Khufu chasing fourteen pound Lucas around the house. I wish I were alert enough to take some videos of them!

28 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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Survived yet another operation - but the recovery is kicking my butt (Original Post) csziggy Nov 2021 OP
Speedy recovery! Phentex Nov 2021 #1
The kitties have mostly been good csziggy Nov 2021 #4
. . . zuul Nov 2021 #2
Wishing you all the best, csziggy. Diamond_Dog Nov 2021 #3
Yeah, and the surgeon warned my that this one would be painful csziggy Nov 2021 #5
Restful and peaceful recovery! Solly Mack Nov 2021 #6
Oh, yes, those purrs are very healing! csziggy Nov 2021 #7
I had the same operation 5 years ago. FuzzyRabbit Nov 2021 #8
I was lucky (maybe) that it never really hurt csziggy Nov 2021 #16
Glad to hear your surgery is finally behind you. Best wishes for a quick and uneventful recovery. Fla Dem Nov 2021 #9
Eghads! Heal excellently! electric_blue68 Nov 2021 #10
Get well soon! lucca18 Nov 2021 #11
I had an inguinal hernia fixed with mesh a couple years ago. Mosby Nov 2021 #12
Normally they would have done this outpatient two months ago csziggy Nov 2021 #17
Wow, glad it worked out well. Mosby Nov 2021 #18
Hang in there through the recovery and I'm glad you have furry comfort. Best wishes Evolve Dammit Nov 2021 #13
If getting old was easy all the young people'd be hogging it up. marble falls Nov 2021 #14
Hey, Recovery Sistah! Kali Nov 2021 #15
Feel better, Kali! LuckyCharms Nov 2021 #21
aww thanks! Kali Nov 2021 #22
Oh, man, that sounds tough csziggy Nov 2021 #24
So sorry to hear what you are going through, csziggy! smirkymonkey Nov 2021 #28
K&R almost never k/r Lounge UTUSN Nov 2021 #19
Sending you a hug and my best wishes. You WILL feel better. LuckyCharms Nov 2021 #20
Thanks, Lucky Charms! csziggy Nov 2021 #26
Its known cat purr sounds I_UndergroundPanther Nov 2021 #23
Khufu wants to lie right on the incisions csziggy Nov 2021 #27
Sounds bloody awful malaise Nov 2021 #25

Phentex

(16,338 posts)
1. Speedy recovery!
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 05:12 PM
Nov 2021

It does seem like it's been a long time coming. Hope the kitties let you rest and recover!

csziggy

(34,153 posts)
4. The kitties have mostly been good
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 05:20 PM
Nov 2021

But early this morning they all went on a food riot. We tried Nula brand crunchies and they don't like them. By nine this morning that was all that was left in their dishes and they were not happy about it. All four cats were tearing around the house, climbing the furniture and knocking stuff over. Amazingly they were very quiet about it and didn't wake either of us until one managed to stab me in the back of the arm climbing the recliner I'm sleeping in.

I had to wake my husband up to feed them and get order re-established.

The first night I was home all four cats slept in the living room with me, with me in sight. I think they missed me the night before when I was in the hospital and wanted to make sure I would stay from now on.

At least they didn't break anything this morning.

Diamond_Dog

(32,608 posts)
3. Wishing you all the best, csziggy.
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 05:19 PM
Nov 2021

Sometimes recovery is worse than the surgery! Hang in there …. I’m glad you have your comfort kitties to aid in your recovery!

csziggy

(34,153 posts)
5. Yeah, and the surgeon warned my that this one would be painful
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 05:22 PM
Nov 2021

Before he saw how bad it had gotten. The good thing is that the loop of intestine was not cut off long enough to die. That would not have been any fun!

FuzzyRabbit

(1,985 posts)
8. I had the same operation 5 years ago.
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 05:50 PM
Nov 2021

Hang in there. Just take it easy for a few days and you will be fine. You will recover to be as good as new just like I did.

The pain I experienced just before going to the emergency room was so bad that I no longer fear death. Two weeks later I had the operation and had a smooth recovery. Thank God for excellent doctors.

csziggy

(34,153 posts)
16. I was lucky (maybe) that it never really hurt
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 09:38 PM
Nov 2021

Just a terrible bulge to one side of the incision (where they removed my kidney and fixed the umbilical hernia) and some discomfort over the last three weeks.

If I'd been able to get the operation as soon as my cardiologist cleared me, there wouldn't have been that much of a problem. But since it is 2021 and COVID...

I'm glad you came through fine. I plan to take it easy for a week or so - it's a good reason to avoid Thanksgiving - and maybe until they take out the drain and staples.

This surgeon is good - he saved my husband's life after I missed that his appendix had burst five years ago this week.

Fla Dem

(24,300 posts)
9. Glad to hear your surgery is finally behind you. Best wishes for a quick and uneventful recovery.
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 06:14 PM
Nov 2021

Glad both Khufu and Lucas are there to give you some comfort.

Mosby

(16,596 posts)
12. I had an inguinal hernia fixed with mesh a couple years ago.
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 07:02 PM
Nov 2021

One big one and one small.

Outpatient surgery, three small incisions.


csziggy

(34,153 posts)
17. Normally they would have done this outpatient two months ago
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 09:40 PM
Nov 2021

But with my various complications (aortic valve replacement and history of vasovagal syncope following operations) the surgeon wanted me in the hospital over night. It was all good - my husband got a good night's sleep and was ready to bring me home and take care of me.

Mosby

(16,596 posts)
18. Wow, glad it worked out well.
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 09:52 PM
Nov 2021

I had an emergency appendectomy last year, more laproscopic incisions from that, spend 3 days in the hospital and had a drain in for a couple weeks. Luckily I didn't wait too long, so there wasn't a lot of damage, I thought I had food poisoning so I tried to power through it, lol. I was in a lot of pain until the surgery.

I went to a cardiologist before my hernia surgery, turns out I have PACs, premature atrial contractions. No biggie thank God.

Kali

(55,100 posts)
15. Hey, Recovery Sistah!
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 07:26 PM
Nov 2021

2 weeks tomorrow. Anesthesia kicked my ass for almost a week. I wonder if there's some kind of shortages and they're using different stuff now or if my surgeon is just that different from the last one. I got a nerve block and gas I don't think I got versed it was weird. But I was SO nauseous for 5 days, couldn't hardly eat couldn't stand up - I could do it muscularly, but my head couldn't take it I would puke. Doing better now but I missed the first session of physical therapy because surgeon didn't call in pain script refill in time. I'm sorry I'm a tough old broad but I'm not doing physical therapy on day one with nothing but Tylenol!

Just rest and as Mike Landwher and MFM advised: take the drugs!

Kali

(55,100 posts)
22. aww thanks!
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 11:40 PM
Nov 2021

I am doing much better now, even made popcorn and got it from the kitchen to living room all by myself!

csziggy

(34,153 posts)
24. Oh, man, that sounds tough
Tue Nov 23, 2021, 10:03 AM
Nov 2021

Most of my post operation nausea was when they almost forced me to eat too soon after an operation. I've learned - don't eat the first night. Small serving of carbohydrates (oatmeal or french toast) the next day, and work up to more food very slowly over the next week. Fortunately, I have the fat reserves to be able to handle that very light diet for that long. And this surgeon listened to me - he had me on ice chips the first night. Then they offered me eggs or pancakes or french toast. I managed most of a slice of the toast, held it down and they cleared me to come home!

I spent the weekend taking a oxycodone every three hours (you can take one or two every six hours so that's the same dose). Today I'm dropping back to one every six hours. So long as I can get enough sleep, I'm good. It doesn't hurt if I don't move around much. And the lift chair keeps me from straining the tummy muscles. I do have to get up and walk the length of the house every couple of hours since I drink a lot of water and have to pee a lot - but one of the instructions was to ambulate, so that is good. The cats supervise that part. At least one cat watches me go to the bathroom each trip. They take shifts!

This is the first operation in a long time I have really felt the need to take the drugs!

Oh, but my home made cold paks are so much better than the hospital's half sized ice thing. In fact, I will be going back to ice my tummy again.

Take care!

 

smirkymonkey

(63,221 posts)
28. So sorry to hear what you are going through, csziggy!
Tue Nov 23, 2021, 06:14 PM
Nov 2021

I am very familiar with the pain of surgery and recovery, at least during surgery you are so doped up you don't feel anything. It's the recovery that's difficult. The pain and trying to get around and get back to normal.

I was allergic to opiates so I had to stop taking them (full body hives and projectile vomiting) so they put me on something else which wasn't very effective and kind of nauseated me anyway, so I just stuck w/ the ibuprophen, but what really saved me was the ice, which I see you are doing. That relieved my discomfort more than anything.

I would just wrap up ice packs in pillow cases (the kind that don't leak) - even better if you have fleece or flannel pillow cases, since those packs can still get really cold through a percale case. And it's easier to cover the area that you have to cover (like my appendectomy) rather than trying to rig something up that would stay put all around my proximal humerous and shoulder blades.

I hope you are feeling better soon and enjoy the meds while you can! Being oblivious during this period helps a lot, but don't forget to keep moving and keeping your blood circulating.

LuckyCharms

(17,665 posts)
20. Sending you a hug and my best wishes. You WILL feel better.
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 11:10 PM
Nov 2021

Keep ahead of the pain with the oxycodone.

Take the pills as directed by your doctor, of course, but explore the possibility of maybe cutting them in half or quarters. I would take them as long as you need to, but no longer than that. It is most important to keep ahead of the pain, so consider the pills to be your friend, but be cognizant of their effect on your body, and try to cut them back as your pain gets better (again, after speaking with your doctor).

I've taken hydrocodone for spinal issues, until the pain got so bad, they switched me to oxycodone. I was warned by both my doctor and my pharmacist to take only what I thought I needed, and to not be afraid to cut up the pills. I ended up taking a total of about two full pills because they were kicking my ass so bad. However, those two pills, cut into about 8 pieces, got me through the soul crushing pain until the pain became "only" really really bad.

You're going to be surprised how quickly your surgical pain is going to start to improve.

Lay low, be good to yourself, and try a little focused meditation to come to terms with your pain.

Feel better real soon!

csziggy

(34,153 posts)
26. Thanks, Lucky Charms!
Tue Nov 23, 2021, 02:23 PM
Nov 2021

I was going to cut back on the oxy more today - most of yesterday I took one at a time and only doubled once in the middle of the night when I was hurting from trying to turn on my side.

But this morning started out with some stressful stuff that had to be taken care - and has yet to be resolved. I had to sit at the desk for a couple of hours and that wore me out. I'm only up now since I needed lunch. Other than that, the pain level is not too bad.

Tomorrow, I will try half tabs every six hours. Though I have to supervise my husband making pecan pies so I have to be awake enough for that.

I'm spending most of my time in the lift recliner, zoning out with Midsommer Murders at night and watching old TV series during the day.

Thanks!

I_UndergroundPanther

(12,611 posts)
23. Its known cat purr sounds
Mon Nov 22, 2021, 11:52 PM
Nov 2021

Actually heal soft tissue injuries and bone. Its because of the frequency of the purr.

My broken elbow healed up so fast it shocked my doctor. And we both thought I would never be able to fully extend my arm.

But having cats laying right next to my elbow for hours and hours not only made it heal fast I can fully extend the arm too.

csziggy

(34,153 posts)
27. Khufu wants to lie right on the incisions
Tue Nov 23, 2021, 02:35 PM
Nov 2021

But that is too painful, so he's lying on my chest and purring mightily. It feels good.

Good thing your elbow healed up! Take care of you and your cats.

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