Posts tagged ‘surgery’

October 31, 2017

#542 – What to Wear Home From Surgery

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The Recovery Room nurses were impressed when my husband slung back the curtain and I emerged in my 3-piece pajama set. “Oh, you’re smart. So many people struggle to get into their street clothes after surgery,” was one of the comments I heard. We had to leave home just after 5 a.m. in order to be at the hospital for 6:30, so with the trauma of surgery and the early morning wake up, I figured that since I was going back to bed, I should make it easy for hubby to help me dress in my one-handed state.

I’ve written about this wonderful 3-piece cotton pajama set before. It’s a must-have if you’re experiencing hot flashes.

Holly seems to like it, too!

 

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October 29, 2017

#541 – Surgery for a Ruptured Thumb Tendon

SurgicalSites

While clicking Holly’s leash, things got out of hand. I heard a snap, then I was unable to flex my thumb. (It could have been any action that caused the rupture, so poor Holly can’t be blamed for this.) About a decade ago I ruptured a tendon in the last joint of my ring finger and didn’t do anything about it, thinking that it would heal on its own. This time I knew that it was important to get it seen to asap. Within a week, I had surgery.

I learned that I had a vestigial (extra) tendon, or Palmaris Longus muscle, that could be used in my tendon reconstruction surgery. I opted for a nerve block, which took some time to do. By not having a general anaesthetic, I was awake for the surgey. My wonderful surgeons even allowed me to have two peaks at my own inner workings! Then the shields, er curtain, went back up. Yes, I realize that particular view is not for everyone, but I found the whole procedure fascinating. Needless to say, I’d rather not have gone through it, but it needed to be done.

Fortunately, the tendon ruptured in my wrist, so the incision was minimized. My tendon was fraying like some old rope that a mountain climber had no choice but to use. The surgeon removed the offending sharp bit of bone in my carpal tunnel in order to prevent it from fraying my newly repaired tendon.

The afternoon of the surgery, I was thrilled to see that I could once again bend my thumb! I now have some gentle thumb exercises to do every hour. The rest of the time I must wear a (hot) splint to protect the thumb. I plan on getting back into the pool with my splint, once my incision heals, which it almost has done. For the time being, I’ll be letting things slip through my fingers!

splint

 

 

August 6, 2012

#322 – Pets and In Loco Parentis

You’re mobile. You enjoy looking after your dog, doing the things she needs to remain healthy, happy and secure. Then, a severe flare-up hits, or you’re off to the hospital for surgery, or some other event befalls you.

You may be increasing your stress level if you don’t have a contingency plan in place to look after your fur baby.  

Fortunately, I have several options open to me, in case of an event, planned or accidental. One option includes Chanone and Canine Harmony. Not only do they provide invaluable dog training classes, but they also do dog day care and boarding. Whenever Holly goes to Canine Harmony I know that she is well-looked after by people who have been trained by Chanone.

To consider:

  1. Is there someone who has a key who can come over and let your pet out and feed him/her?
  2. If you are going to be hospitalized, what arrangements can you make?
  3. If you are at home, but incapacitated, is it possible for your dog to go to daycare?
  4. Familiarize your pet with their temporary “home”. This let’s them know that you will be coming back for them.

Related posts:

May 22, 2012

Pain Medication

You’ve successfully come through the surgery, now comes the recovery period.

To get through the first few days, you’ll be offered a variety of pain medications, of which you will need less of as you recover. Hydromorphone, morphine, Tylenol 3, Demerol – these are just a sampling of what was offered to me, either by pump, pill or poke. Some I tolerated better than others.

Post-surgery, it is important not to let the pain get away from you. Take what is on offer, bearing in mind how you react to what you are given. If it doesn’t suit you for whatever reason, be sure to let the nurses or doctor know. For example, immediately post-surgery to fuse C – 1 and C – 2 (Cervical vertebra), I was given hydromorphone. I didn’t do well with this drug; the ability to communicate was doused and seemed to smoulder like a poorly extinguished bonfire. I knew what I wanted to say, but I couldn’t verbalize it. That is frustrating enough on its own, but coupled with the pain at the back of my head and on my hip (where they removed bone), it was a situation filled with angst. I did finally manage to ask for morphine later that same day.

I found that I was able to use less medication as a result of doing the stress techniques, which is a form of heart, mind and body work. I remember the Pain Doctor—yes, the hospital had a doctor dedicated to dispensing pain medication—remarking that he was surprised to see that I hadn’t used very much morphine. I attributed it to practising my stress techniques. “Well, I don’t know about that,” was his comment.

I think he missed an opportunity to discover why what I was doing was helping me heal, which could be of benefit to other patients.

For more tips on preparing for surgery, please visit the Surgery category on this blog. If you would like to learn about a program to help manage your pain, and increase your feelings of health and wellness, please click here.

Image courtesy of Sergio Roberto Bichara.

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