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My "was to be LAVH turned out to be SAH" story My "was to be LAVH turned out to be SAH" story

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Unread 05-04-2009, 01:49 AM
My "was to be LAVH turned out to be SAH" story

I scheduled my elective LAVH for April 13, 2009. I had been having excessive bleeding to the point that I could not venture far from a restroom for 5 hours or more on certain days of my period - and was having to make that trip to the restroom every 5-10 minutes! I was scared, but I could not live like that anymore. I was exhausted most of the time and in nursing school, so wearing the white uniform on those days of the month was nerve-wracking in itself. My pre-op lab work at the doctor's office showed a decline in my hemoglobin and hematocrit from the previous year's lab work, which I believe was pointing toward my starting to become anemic.

I did the pre-op lab work for the surgery center four days before the surgery (which was about a month after deciding to have the surgery). My hemoglobin and hematocrit had declined even more from the previous month, so I knew I was doing the right thing.

I checked into the surgical hospital an hour before my surgery. After receiving my IV and meds, they wheeled me off to surgery. My first conscious thought afterward was "why is there a large bandage on my abdomen?" I don't know why or how I knew it was there, but I did. And the only thing I could say was "They cut me. Why did they cut me." I had my surgery on a Monday. I was planning on returning to clinicals the next Tuesday, and just knew that was possible with the LAVH. When they finally wheeled me into my room, my husband told me there was alot of damage that we didn't know about and that they could not do the surgery laparoscopically.

The doctor came to see me after his office hours were over. I was still a little groggy from the morphine pump that I was on, but he was able to explain to me that while starting out with the LAVH, he was unable to visualize where my utereus, vagina, and colon were seperated. He said that there was alot of endometriosis and he had to open me up in order to clean it all out. My ovaries were wrapped around my uterus. He checked my kidneys while he was in there. He also told me that was one of the worst cases he had seen in a while, though not the worst. And he could not believe that I had not complained of pain anymore than I had.

I was in surgery for about 3-4 hours, and in recovery for about 3 hours. They kept me for 3 nights. I was kept NPO until lunch the next day, because of all the work around my colon that the doctor had to do. But by the 2nd day, I was walking up and down the hall of the surgery center, and the doctor said I was doing so well that he allowed me to return to clinicals the next Tuesday as planned.

I wore an ace bandage wrapped around my belly for support while at clinicals. At the end of the day, I was exhausted and my belly hurt, but I was glad to be able to finish my school work.

I am currently starting my 4th week post-op, and am feeling pretty good. I still hurt, but I just take it easy. I don't go anywhere unless I absolutely have to, which right now is limited to school. We are in finals this week, but next week I start a summer operating room class. More being on my feet all day, but I know I can do it. I just make sure everyone knows that I cannot lift or pull anything.

This was actually my first surgery ever. I am blessed that I have such a wonderful doctor, husband and family. Things didn't turn out like I had planned, but they did turn out for the best. I can already tell, when there is no pain from my incision, that I am gonna feel great when I'm completely healed. I had no idea how bad I did feel, probably because I had just gotten used to how I felt and thought that it was normal to feel that way.
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