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Epidural with general? Epidural with general?

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  #1  
Unread 11-17-2011, 08:35 AM
Epidural with general?

I was due to have TAH last Tues 15th Nov due to dysgerminoma cancer, but the poor lady scheduled before me, had some serious complications, and mine was cancelled late afternoon. It has now been resceduled for first thing in the morning this coming Tues 22nd Nov.
I was so tired when they came to talk to me I wasn't really taking much in but I was offered the chance for an epidural as pain relief during and after, which could be topped up, as well as the general anasthetic. I was asked to have a chat with my partner and let them know when I went up to theatre. We didn't have chance to discuss it as it had got so late and my fiance had to leave for work. As I say I was so tired (doing my nodding dog impression) I would have just said yes.
However now I have got chance to think it over and I am not so sure. I hate feeling out of control of my body, and especially feeling numb like that. I have had one pregnancy and refused it then..
Basically though I am hoping for the best option. I want to be able to get up and mobile asap although I know the first 24 hours I will have catheter and drain and won't be. I have heard that with epidural you can be in bed for 2-3 days before they allow you to start. Can anyone confirm this? I think I would rather be incontrol of my pain, not kill it off completely, as I figure its only going to come back once they stop the epidural so I might as well not have it from the start.
I know this is pre op and maybe I should be posting in post op if I want people's experiences, but newbie here.
Can anyone give any advice or ideas here please?
Thanks xx
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  #2  
Unread 11-17-2011, 09:20 PM
Re: Epidural with general?

I know how you feel. I have given birth twice and refused an epidural both times.
But I did agree to the spinal block with general for my TAH in September. I was very anxious about the whole needle in my back thing so they actually knocked me out first and then did the spinal block. It did work for blocking the pain as I came out of surgery and looking back now, that was a good thing. Although I did have a brief burst of very intense pain when it wore off the next day but I had a pain pump to handle that.
I was able to get up and slowly hobble to the bathroom the day after surgery. The doctor wanted me up and moving as soon as possible.
  #3  
Unread 11-17-2011, 10:56 PM
Re: Epidural with general?

I also had an epidural with my general anesthetic. They took it out the next morning and had me walking within a few hours of that. The catheter came out when I started to walk.

(((Hugs)))...
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  #4  
Unread 11-18-2011, 04:19 AM
Re: Epidural with general?

I had some sort of (morphine?) shot in the spine just before the surgery, but it wasn't an epidural, I don't suppose, because it wasn't something that stayed in.
However, it was to give me better pain control after I woke up, and maybe it meant I got less anesthetic too.
Whatever it was - I was pain free for some hours, slept all night, and by then had the PDA pump too.

They did tell me what that spinal shot was but I forget .
I totally recommend it!
I really don't remember if I walked the next day WITH the catheter bag, or whether it was later that day.... but I know it was soon. I was 5 days in hospital after my TAH/BSO and walked a lot once I "lost" my catheter and pump. A boring trek up and down the corridor, but on day 4 I went down in the lift/elevator and sat outside the front door of the hospital in the sun.
They are keen for you to get moving!
  #5  
Unread 11-18-2011, 06:38 AM
Re: Epidural with general?

thanks for your replies I didn't realise you managed to get up and walking the next day on it. That sounds good then. I want to be able to get up as soon as they take the catheter out ideally. I am happy to have it for a few hours after, and while I am sleeping if they will take it out then. It's good to hear other's experiences with it and gives me some more info to base my decisions on..
xx
  #6  
Unread 11-18-2011, 11:03 AM
Re: Epidural with general?

Hey eveee,

I've never had an epidural and not to fond of the idea of large needles near my spinal chord, but was told about spinal block, which is one injection at the base of the spine.

I opted for the spinal block rather than an epidural and it worked great. I did nave numb legs and feet for a bit, but since I was still under the influence of the general, it wasn't a problem. When the general did wear off, I was ready for a walk and felt great. I was started on oral pain meds before the spinal block had completely worn off, so the transition was easy. Now have tender swelly belly, but not much else.

Good Luck!
  #7  
Unread 11-18-2011, 02:28 PM
Re: Epidural with general?

Eveeee.....I went in thinking I was going to have all general anesthesia. On the day of my surgery (11/1/11) I was having some sinus problems. After a talk with the chief of anesthesia we (she and I) decided that an epidural with sedatives and a small breathing tube that only went to the back of my throat was our best option. The first 24 hours I was in bed with a catheter and not up. I had my surgery around 10am. I was up in a chair without my catheter within that period. I was up walking later that day about 2 times on every shift(they were working 12hour shifts). I was given a boost of pain meds right before she took the epidural cath out. I was given morphine shots for breakthrough pain. I hope this helps. I had never had an epidural before this, but if I had to make this choice again I would def do it again. Best of luck to you!
  #8  
Unread 11-19-2011, 08:17 PM
Epidural with general?

  Quote:
Originally Posted by eveee View Post
I was due to have TAH last Tues 15th Nov due to dysgerminoma cancer, but the poor lady scheduled before me, had some serious complications, and mine was cancelled late afternoon. It has now been resceduled for first thing in the morning this coming Tues 22nd Nov.
I was so tired when they came to talk to me I wasn't really taking much in but I was offered the chance for an epidural as pain relief during and after, which could be topped up, as well as the general anasthetic. I was asked to have a chat with my partner and let them know when I went up to theatre. We didn't have chance to discuss it as it had got so late and my fiance had to leave for work. As I say I was so tired (doing my nodding dog impression) I would have just said yes.
However now I have got chance to think it over and I am not so sure. I hate feeling out of control of my body, and especially feeling numb like that. I have had one pregnancy and refused it then..
Basically though I am hoping for the best option. I want to be able to get up and mobile asap although I know the first 24 hours I will have catheter and drain and won't be. I have heard that with epidural you can be in bed for 2-3 days before they allow you to start. Can anyone confirm this? I think I would rather be incontrol of my pain, not kill it off completely, as I figure its only going to come back once they stop the epidural so I might as well not have it from the start.
I know this is pre op and maybe I should be posting in post op if I want people's experiences, but newbie here.
Can anyone give any advice or ideas here please?
Thanks xx
Hi eveee
First of all, im sorry to hear you have cancer, its a great deal to cope with.
Re: anasthesia - It's difficult to say, I had a spinal anaesthesia on its own, one injection, that was it. (i had TAH with LSO) My legs felt numb after for about 3-4 hours after but as it was evening I didn't get to go out of bed just then! As soon as I could, even tho I was sporting a catheter I was encouraged (I wanted to!) to get out and walk about, they like you to be mobile as soon as physically possible to ensure good circulation etc.

Why not post your Q in one of the Sticky threads in the Post Op section, the group I'm in are amazing and I expect you would get some superb support in there too its the 24th - to 30th October group thread! I'm sure you would be welcomed and your Q answered better than I can !! Try any of the post op site threads!! Or all!!

Big hugs to you and Best of luck, I hope you get some decent advice to assist with your decision making,

Festi Diva

PS by Danni - Pre-op ladies cannot post in the post-op forum until after their surgery. Hopefully more post-op ladies will see your question here in pre-op and share their experiences.
  #9  
Unread 11-20-2011, 12:16 PM
Re: Epidural with general?

I had asked my anesthesiologist about a spinal block for my TAH on Oct 31st. She had worked with my doctor a lot and said that he preferred not to use them- one reason I was given was that the abdominal muscles do not relax as much when they do a spinal block.

I had heard that benefits of using it are they use less of the general anesthesia and that the pain relieving agents are more concentrated where needed, rather than going through your whole body.

It sounds like lots of people here have had good experiences with them though, so it probably just comes down to what your doctor recommends and what you feel comfortable with.

Best of luck with your surgery & with beating the cancer!!!
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