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If Your Hysterectomy is Your First Surgery | Part 2

From the Pre-Op Hysterectomy Articles List

Hysterectomy first surgery part 2Continued from: If Your Hysterectomy is Your First Surgery Part 1.

Depending on the hospital, the nurse may start your IV now. Some hospitals have the operating room nurse or technologist start the IV. It all depends on their protocol. Some hospitals will first give you a tiny shot of Novocain—it feels like a bee sting—to numb the area where the IV will be inserted. Some people prefer this method, others just want one poke. At first the IV will only be saline or some other base fluid, and no, the needle from the IV doesn’t stay in, only the small plastic catheter. There’s no medication yet, only fluids to keep you hydrated. At some point, perhaps in the prep room, perhaps in a holding area just outside OR hallways, you will meet your anesthesiologist and your nurse anesthetist if there will be one. They will work as a team, making sure you stay just unconscious enough throughout your surgery. Again, they will ask you the same questions and probably add a few of their own. Before you go into the operating room, you will probably also see your doctor(s) briefly. After you’ve answered all the questions and met everyone, you may be given a sedative before you go into the OR. Some hospitals and doctors wait until you’re in the room itself, others will do it beforehand. If you really want to be aware of what’s going on and see the OR clearly, you can ask them to wait until you’re in the room for the sedative. They may say no, but at least you can ask. One of the purposes of the sedative is to induce a chemical/medical amnesia, so don’t be alarmed if you don’t remember anything after it’s given. It will also make you dizzy and loopy.

When you get into the OR, it will be very cold and there will be lots of people. No, it’s not just because you’re in a flimsy hospital gown. It really is cold. They keep the temperature low because the equipment and lights heat up the room and those sterile gowns that everyone wears can get really hot. The OR bed, they call it a table, will look very narrow. Don’t worry, you won’t fall off. They use a large Velcro strap to make sure. You will transfer to the table and several nurses and techs will work very fast and begin connecting you to various machines that monitor your heart, breathing, blood pressure and other functions. Once you are completely hooked up to every machine imaginable and feel like you can receive radio signals from Russia, the anesthesiologist will give you more medicine and you will quickly go to sleep.

If you plan to have an epidural or spinal, you will likely get it when you go into the OR, before you’re asleep. The Anesthesiologist should explain everything as they go so there are no surprises. S/he will have you sit on the edge of the table and hunch over, bending your back like an angry cat. S/he will use cold, sterile soap and a sponge to wash your lower back 3 or 4 times. The anesthesiologist will give you a tiny shot of Novocain (same as the IV) to numb an area of your lower back and then will insert the needle for the epidural/spinal. You may feel a jolt down your leg and the anesthesiologist will adjust the placement of the needle. The needle doesn’t stay in, but a tiny catheter will and that will deliver the medicine to numb you from the waist down. Once this is done, you will lie down and be given a sedative and go off into sleepy land very quickly.

Continue Reading: If Your Hysterectomy is Your First Surgery Part 3

This content was written by a member of HysterSisters.com as a non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support

12-02-2010 - 09:22 AM


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