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Unread 09-26-2002, 02:35 PM

My surgery is in November and my doctor suggested that If I am offered an epidural or spinal ( what is the difference?) to jump at it? Has anybody else had this?
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Unread 09-26-2002, 03:21 PM

I thought they were both the same thing. I had a spinal with my first child - felt no pain but took longer to recover. It basically numbs you below the waist. That was my experience, anyway.

Had the others with a local; recovered faster, but OWWWWWWW! LOL

9/27 tah/bso
Unread 09-26-2002, 03:29 PM

I didn't know you had a choice. I'd like to know more too. Let us know what you decide. and good luck.
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Unread 09-26-2002, 03:45 PM

i had an epidural. it was wonderful! they gave me some good medicine in the IV and had me lean on a bed tray with my head in my hands and the nurse held me up and the next thing I know, i was waking up just in time to watch getting wheeled into the OR to go back to sleep. Didn't feel a thing when they put it in or took it out. after surgery they had it cranking. couldn't hardly move my legs. no feeling down there. however, NO PAIN MEDICINE works on gas pain. Don't understand why not, but it doesn't. The other thing about the epidural was my dr had this thing that she wouldn't take out the catheter until the epidural was out. which the anestetiologist (sp?) (they call them the "A" Man on here if you see that referred to) had to do. so it was an extra day before the epidural and cath got to come out because the dr's had to get together. if i had to do it again, i still would choose the epidural. good luck to you.
Unread 09-26-2002, 04:31 PM

Hi there,
I had a TAH BSO w/ appendectomy just 4 weeks ago. The DR gave me choice to have a spinal or to be put out for the procedure. I chose the spinal even though had never had any other surgery. Once I got onto the table they had me sit crossed legged while they put it in. Layed down and started going numb. They drapped me across my chest and surgery began. I have to admit it was an experience to hear and talk with everyone during the surgery. Even got to bring in my own CD's for everyone to listen to. They kept asking me questions on how I was doing and telling me how things were going. I wasn't scared at all. I didn't have to stay that long in recovery either. When my DH saw me come out of recovery he couldn't believe how great I looked and how it seemed like nothing had happened.
Even though everyone thought I was nuts, I would do it again!
No groggy feeling like other people complain about.
Even though we weren't able to have children, I looked at it as if my Dr was doing a C-section. Plus I have a great DR that put me at soo much ease.
Unread 09-26-2002, 05:31 PM

I had both a spinal and epidural and you can read my story at the "www" link below. Because I opted for an epidural the A man said he would do both but it would only be one stick and I would get better numbing with the spinal. I could get relief post-op from the epidural without the narcotic side effects (nausea, dopiness). The catheder to the bladder must be left in place until the numbness from the epidural wears off otherwise you won't be able to feel if your bladder is full. Lots of women that don't have epidural still have a bladder catheder in till the next day anyway and it sure beats getting up in the middle of the night since you have i.v. fluids going in. Best of luck to you.

Here is a link that helps describe the difference between epidural and spinal. The last two responses may help you decide. I believe the last reply by MsDebbo is pretty accurate.
Unread 09-26-2002, 05:44 PM

Thanks for the clarification, Happycat! No wonder I was getting them confused with eachother & thinking they were the same thing!

Very much appreciated. Take care,

Unread 09-26-2002, 06:40 PM

Wow. Thankyou so much for all the replies. So are you actually awake during the operation? Does it make you naucious?
Unread 09-26-2002, 06:51 PM

I had an epidural along with general anastesia during my TAH. I can't say the epidural did much for me personally. It wore off within 2 hours of coming out of the operating room and then I had a big old fight with my nurse because I was in a lot of pain and she said I couldn't have anything for the pain because I had the epidural. My dr had ordered a PCA for me knowing I was having the epidural so I have never figured out what her problem was. But...that's another story. I know it had worn off because the feeling came back in my legs. It wasn't just my imagination. I personally wouldn't want to be awake during the surgery. Way too much anxiety involved in that. But then, I don't have the problems with nausea that so many others have when undergoing general anastesia and taking narcotic pain medicines. You definitely won't want to be after the surgery. If they could make you numb and keep you that way below the waste for the first 24 hours I'd be all for it. Maybe mine just didn't work properly. If I were you I would question them about how long the numbness is supposed to last. Good luck and to you.

Unread 09-26-2002, 06:58 PM

Great! Thanks for that. I will definately ask how long the epidural lasts, and I'm pretty sure I don't want to be awake for the surgery. I have to come up with a list of questions to ask when I get my pre-op appointment. One day I am very nervous and the next day I am completely fine with it.

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