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What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

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Unread 12-22-2011, 06:49 AM
What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

My TAH was done on Dec 12 and right now I am feeling very good about the whole thing. We all feel like we need to be prepared, and this site helped me so much that I wasn't really surprised by anything that happened at the hospital or afterward. I am so glad to be here, and have been following the progress of the 'sisters' who visited the castle during the last couple of weeks.

One thing that jumped out at me is something I wanted to share with the pre-op gals: find out whether you are going to be recovering in a surgical ward or in the maternity section of your hospital!!!!

I was frustrated by the level of nurse care I got during my stay. When I told my gyno, her first response was "I should have put you in maternity." Until then I didn't even realize she had that kind of option or had chosen not to take it.

My Post-Op sisters had all kinds of good/bad opinions of their experience at the castle, but what I noticed is that several people felt that being treated by maternity staff made a big difference.

If I had even been aware of this option, I probably woudnl't have assumed it would be better than regular recovery, but after reading many posts and hearing my own doctor's spontaneous comment, I am suggesting that you discuss this with your doctor prior to hospital admission so that, either way, you know where you will be while you are recovering.

Best of luck with your own experience - I look forward to hearing from you when you are home from the castle!
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Unread 12-22-2011, 09:05 AM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...

Note: children mentioned

I was put on the high risk maternity ward by accident. There wasn't a bed ready on the regular med/surg floor, so they sent me to high risk maternity. I had excellent care, but it's hard to attribute to the floor because the hospital focuses on patient care.

The maternity floor is not for everyone. Some women struggle with emotions over the loss of their uterus and the potential for more children. On my maternity ward, it was very quiet because it was high risk and the family waiting area was down a long hall. However, they did play music every time their was a new birth.
Unread 12-22-2011, 10:19 AM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

I didn't realize where they put me after surgery. I thought I was hearing things when I thought I heard babies crying. Found out I was put in the c-section/female procedures floor. I received excellent care. I couldn't have asked for better nurses.
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Unread 12-22-2011, 10:19 AM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...

I was at a very small local hospital which a year ago quit delivering babies, so no choice of maternity ward. I was on the regular medical floor and competing for care with several Alzheimer's patients from the attached nursing home who had caught some contagious virus. They were supposed to be in isolation but kept climbing out of bed trying to escape. There was one supervisor, who wouldn't lift a finger to work, just ordered people around, 2 RNs, and 2 LPNs and about 15 other patients. It was very chaotic, with IV pump alarms going unanswered, meds not received at all, catheter bag not emptied and noise all the time. My husband was with me and did most of my care, even having to bring in food as they could never be sure what they had didn't have anything I was allergic to. I commented to him that it reminded me of stories I have heard of hospitals in the third world. I was told that almost none of the other people there, who were all over 70, had been expected statistically and they had no permission to call in extra staff, so those like me that weren't giving trouble just had to cope. You might ask if they will call in extra staff if they have a larger number of patients than expected. If I hadn't been pressed to get this done while deductible and out of pocket expenses were met for my insurance I would have tried to go to a different hospital. That said, I don't regret my choice of Dr, he did a great job and was dismayed that the hospital was not following his orders regarding meds.
Unread 12-22-2011, 10:37 AM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

My hospital was a very small hospital. I know I was on the same floor and the nursery and L&D but I think surgical recovery was on the same floor. I'm very thankful of that because there is no way I could have handled being around new moms/babies without having a breakdown! I had one incredible nurse, one good one, and one my husband almost cussed out. (I told her I was about to pass out in the shower and instead of hitting the emergency button in the bathroom she ran out of the room for 5 minutes!)
Unread 12-22-2011, 10:50 AM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

I too was put on the maternity floor...I received excellent care...however, I did have 3 children and wasn't upset about losing my uterus at all...rather excited...because of all the trouble I had been experiencing...I even had a nutrition gal ask where my baby was...and I laughed and said no baby...hysterectomy!!

Now with that said...I can see how it would be hard on someone who was young and lost their ability to have children...my sister was that way...she had to have her radical hysterectomy at 28 and they too put her in the same area of the hospital...she said it was difficult for her.

I also had a friend who lost her baby at birth suddenly and they too put her on the maternity floor and she really had a much more difficult time...as you all can imagine...

I think they put you on a maternity floor because it has to do with your procedure...having your maternity part removed. =) The nurses there know how to deal with those kinds of things...especially TAH care and a c-section care is quite a bit alike.
Unread 12-22-2011, 01:59 PM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

Yup, if I had to do it over again, I wouldn't have been on a general surgical ward either. The way I was treated and whether or not anyone figured I even needed pain meds depended on the attitude of whatever nurse was on shift. Less than 8 hours after my surgery, I was being asked if I was 'looking forward to going home tomorrow'... The day after my surgery, I was having to argue to get something stronger than extra strength tylenol for pain...I ended up with the impression that some of these nurses didn't take my surgery very seriously at all, and I would hardly consider myself a 'whiner'...But this is the removal of a major organ. Of course this is serious surgery!

And then there were the other patients...

I do understand NOT putting hysterectomy patients on a maternity ward...When I worked at a general hospital, I was horrified at what I thought was the insensitivity of putting women who had had gyn surgeries on the same floor as women having babies.

Personally, I think a woman should be asked pre-op what her preference would be. I would have preferred maternity, but I know many women wouldn't, of course.
Unread 12-22-2011, 02:05 PM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

Being put on a maternity ward can be trying for those of us without children. I was on the maternity ward floor and it seemed weird to me while I was recoverying to watch the mothers walking the floors and hearing the babies crying. And watching all the joy around me, while I was in alot of pain just seemed surreal.

I do agree though it is a good idea to ask where your recovery will occur. I was never asked, that is just where I was put.
Unread 12-22-2011, 02:48 PM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

i was in a surgical section of my floor, however, one end was L&D and the other was the children's wing, which was very closed off due to the risk of infection. I didn't hear anything from the maternity section and only knew about it when I walked the halls a bit (I was in the hospital 7 days due to an emergency and having a D&C and then the hyst.).

The nurses on my ward were great. And somehow I had my own room, which was really nice. The food was actually pretty good. They came around with a menu to select from. The first morning was gruel/oatmeal, broth, etc., but had solid food by dinner.
Unread 12-22-2011, 03:08 PM
Re: What I wish I'd known before going to hospital...surgical or maternity ward

I was regular med/surg. It was quiet and the care was better than I expected.

In my case being in maternity would have been fine but I could see how for others that would be traumatic.

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