Upcoming hysterectomy 5/5: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worked. | HysterSisters
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Upcoming hysterectomy 5/5: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worked. Upcoming hysterectomy 5/5: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worked.

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  #1  
Unread 05-01-2017, 06:38 PM
Upcoming hysterectomy 5/5: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worked.

I've been told that I'll have a walking epidural. I'm curious if anyone else had one for their surgery and how well it works.
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  #2  
Unread 05-01-2017, 08:04 PM
Re: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worked.

Hi Curlyred128 -

I had general anesthetic and an epidural. My anesthesiologist recommended this combination for my TAH BSO as she could use less anesthetic that way and I would wake up quicker. I liked that. I would do this combination again in a heartbeat. After the surgery, they could inject pain meds into the tubing - I had a morphine pump which I could administer the doses as needed. It was removed the next day so I could start walking.

  #3  
Unread 05-02-2017, 06:02 AM
Re: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worked.

  Quote:
Originally Posted by marestail View Post
It was removed the next day so I could start walking.
Thanks! Does that mean you couldn't walk at all with yours? I know I'll be talking to the anesthesiologist the night before and the morning of, but I'm kind of .
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  #4  
Unread 05-02-2017, 01:00 PM
Re: Upcoming hysterectomy 5/5: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worke

I had this and it was a great option. It delivered pain meds as needed right to where pain relief was needed. I could completely feel my legs and walk with it. It was kept in for the two nights I was in the hospital, and removed the morning of the day I was leaving. They gradually reduced the dosage, and I could activate the pump once ever twenty minutes, as needed for a dose.

It allowed me to wake up and tell them that the pain was a “zero.” It also allowed me not to have to take any oral pain meds until later. The only downside for me was that the meds that were used, fentanyl, I think, made me itchy all over and I had to keep taking Benadryl. I was told this was quite common.

Best of luck.
  #5  
Unread 05-02-2017, 01:24 PM
Re: Upcoming hysterectomy 5/5: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worke

Oh, thank you lynngg! I asked today during my pre op lab work, and the nurses didn't know anything about it. I'll definitely be talking to the anesthesiologist on Thursday.
  #6  
Unread 05-02-2017, 01:30 PM
Re: Upcoming hysterectomy 5/5: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worke

I had an epidural plus something to knock me out for the surgery. The anesthesiologist said that this would be better for pain relief, and indeed, I didn't have any real pain at all! A bit of soreness, a bit of twingeyness, but no real pain.

The epidural catheter was connected via a pump to a large bag of Dilaudid. It was left in until first thing in the morning on the third day after surgery. This certainly didn't prevent me from walking. :-) The nurses had me up and walking right the first morning after surgery, one lap around the ward that morning, one lap that afternoon. By the second morning I was taking myself out to walk multiple laps around the ward once an hour or so. The nurse showed me how to hang my various tubes (IV, epidural, Foley) off the portable IV stand. The IV stand was also useful for helping me keep my balance.

Because I had an epidural, my body couldn't tell when it needed to relieve itself, so I also had a Foley catheter connected to a collection bag. A nurse stopped by periodically the empty the collection bag. There were plenty of other patients walking the ward with collection bags hanging off their IV stands, so it wasn't a big deal. I just had to remember to always keep the bag at a level *lower* than my bladder.

The Foley catheter was removed four hours after the epidural catheter. I went home a few hours later.

The one thing I would do differently if I had to do it again concerns marking the location of the epidural site. When the nurse removed the epidural cath, she put a dressing over the site. She also gave me a small supply of spare dressings. She said to remove the dressing before I showered, then replace it with a fresh dressing after I dried off.

Well, I live alone. Do you think I could *find* the darn site to put the fresh dressing on? I knew it was somewhere on my spine, but I couldn't locate it by touch. I finally just stuck the dressing on a random spot on my spine and hoped for the best.

So if I had to do it again, I would ask the nurse to mark the level of the dressing on my hip with an indelible marker. That way I'd be able to trace around at that level until I hit my spine.
  #7  
Unread 05-02-2017, 07:32 PM
Re: curious about epidural - would like to hear from anyone who had one and how well it worked.

  Quote:
Originally Posted by Curlyred128 View Post
Thanks! Does that mean you couldn't walk at all with yours? I know I'll be talking to the anesthesiologist the night before and the morning of, but I'm kind of .
The epidural made my legs numb, so it had to be removed before I started walking the next day. It took only an hour or so for the meds to wear off so that I could walk. As the other sisters stated, I also had a catheter in until the epidural was removed. They actually wanted it in longer, but it fell out when I got up and started to move. That made quite the mess!

Definitely talk to your doctor to see if it is an option for you. It can vary by surgery and doctor preference.

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