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SHARING IS CARING

Abdominal Hysterectomy - TAH - Tammy's Story

From the Princess Stories Articles List

Princess Tammy's Story

Well I am into the 11th day after the surgery and starting to feel better. In fact, I feel like I need to get out of the house or I will go stir crazy. I said that I would write down all that occurred from the surgery on so here goes.

In to the hospital Friday January 15th by 1:00 p.m. My surgery was scheduled for 3:30 p.m. I was lucky; they got me into surgery around 2:00. I was scared as the ****ens and started to cry but up until the time I was knocked out they let my husband be with me. I woke up about 5:00 in the afternoon and thought I was going to pass out from the pain. It was my understanding that the nurse had to wait until I woke up to start the morphine drip for the pain. What I did not realize but do now is that at least of my pain came from back spasms. I had neglected to let the nurse and doctor know that I was on muscle relaxants periodically for back spasms and laying on a hard surface for the surgery started them up. This being the case, and it being a Friday after 5:00 p.m. there was no way of getting a hold of the doctor for a while. Meanwhile the morphine drip was starting to help but I did not feel in control of the pain until 5:00 a.m. the next morning. I am firmly convinced that I would not have had near the problems if I had been able to have the muscle relaxer during that time. At about 8:00 a.m. the nurse had gotten verification for the muscle relaxer and I was on my way.

Saturday January 16. At about 8:00 a.m. the nurse took out my catheter and also took off the morphine drip. I was to go on pain pills. I was not told that I would have to ask for them as needed so after the first set of pills I waited about 8 hours until I finally asked the nurse to please bring me some more. She was very pleased with my progress in pain control. I was very pleased my language was decent! About 20 minutes after the catheter was out I had to use the restroom. This was a real experience as I have had interstitial cystitis of the bladder in the past and it also had been moved around during the surgery. This being the case, it took some real concentration for me to relax the muscles enough to release the urine In fact, this problem lasted up until the 9th day. It didn't really hurt; it just took some time for my bladder muscles to get into the swing of things again. 10:30 a.m., Ben, my husband showed up and was able to give me a loving hug, which by that time I sorely needed. To my surprise, I also had in-laws that showed up at noon. Shortly after that my parents showed up. This was very tiring and I would recommend that they have waited until Sunday when I felt better since my surgery was so late in the day on Friday and I had no sleep to speak of that night.

Sunday January 17. The pain is getting under control. The doctor came in to see me and told me that I would be going home tomorrow. Ben and I were worried about me going home so soon but it all worked out. Starting to go stir crazy from being in the hospital but looking forward to tomorrow and getting home.

Monday, January 18th. This is the third day after the surgery. The staples were taken out of my incision and tape put on. The incision looks pretty good from here. Just a line across my lower abdomen that looks incredibly healed up. The nurse cautions me that I cannot take a shower for at least a week. Later I am released from the hospital, complete with hormone pills, and pain pills. The drive was not bad, with the seat reclined and pillows; I was okay for the 40-mile drive home.

The first week home from the hospital I was in quite a bit of pain. I had almost no pain from my incision itself but had a lot from inside. It felt like my stomach wanted to fall out but a few inside stitches were holding it in. Actually that is pretty much what is happening as I am healing up. I sleep quite a lot during the day, and seem to go to bed around midnight. Total turnaround from what I am used to.

The second week, and I am feeling much like a human again. So much so that I forget that I have had major surgery until I stand up and try to do something. I am quickly reminded by the pain that occurs when I over do. I used the pain pills that were given me during the first week and now am pretty much off of them but do have a second, less potent prescription for use when necessary. I don't know how many women have as much pain as I did during the first week, but believe me, when the prescription said 2 pills every 4 to 6 hours, I used 6 a day. There is a fallacy about pain pills that you can quickly fall into. They are very good at helping you not have pain so that you heal faster and with less anxiety, but you can also feel good enough to overdo, which is what I did.

I found that the second week was much more difficult than the first. Not due to pain, but due to inactivity. This is severely depressing to anyone who is overly active or a workaholic like I am. This is the point at which company is welcome, and mental stimulation a must. I found that keeping up on what is happening at work, getting out for SHORT rides in the car, with pillow over tummy and under the seatbelt helped enormously. You have to lean the seat back quite a bit, but just the act of getting out of the house, even if only for a few minutes, was wonderful for my sanity. My husband did the driving while I did the sightseeing. Another advantage is that my Mom and Dad live 5 miles away, so we were able to visit to give me a break from being homebound.

I am now starting the 13th day of my recovery and seem to be progressing very fast. I have to remember not to over do, which Ben is constantly reminding me of. Thank goodness for very helpful husbands because without all of his help I would be in sad condition.

04-12-2003 - 11:27 AM


SHARING IS CARING


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