Friday, July 29, 2011

Pre Admission appointment today

I decided that I had better try and compose this post before I fall asleep as it is almost 12:am and I've been up since 5:45am last night!

Today was my pre-admission appointment for my hip replacement surgery.  I did some blood work, a ECG, and saw a ton of other people.  I saw/spoke to a nurse who thoroughly went over my history.  She typed much of it into the computer, so I hope that means it'll be there for all doctors and medical professionals to reference the next time they want information.

Anyhow, I saw a pharmacist who went over my medications.  She told me which medications to take the day of the surgery, which ones not to take, etc.  That visit was pretty self explanatory.  I also went to a group meeting where another nurse and a physiotherapist spoke to us.  The physio spoke to us first.  She told us about some of the walking and showering aids we would need after discharge.  This includes a cane, walker, etc.  She also told us about the no-nos for after the surgery.  I was aware of most of this since I read the binder I had received a few weeks before.

I have to say that there was an elderly woman who was hard of hearing.  Man, was she ever a riot! Sometimes she was happy and funny.  At one point she and I made (accidental on my end) eye contact.  When we were looking at each other, she smiled, winked, and waived at me.  I nearly busted out in laughter when she did that...she's so funny.  But, she was very concerned with things costing her money-for example, walkers, canes, shower chairs, etc.  She was also upset that the nurse has given us so much information about the surgery.  By "so much information",  I mean the fact that the nurse told us about how we'll be stapled together, how the anesthetic will work, etc.  This nice old lady would just prefer to go to the hospital, get the surgery done, and be done with it.  I must say, her daughter or care giver or whoever the woman with the elderly woman was...she was a definite instigator in my opinion.  I'm gonna say it's mother and daughter.  The daughter knows how her mother is, so why let your mother talk and talk and talk for 5 minutes about something, especially when there are 5 other patients there in the meeting?  When the mother started CRYING, the daughter said to her "Don't cry".  Then the nurse said something like "it's okay to cry".  Then the daughter said something like "You know what? I know what I'm doing.  She's upset.  You guys give too much information".  Huh??

I used my spy cam to film a bit....



Oh well.

I also saw the anesthesiologist.  He was quite impressed with the fact that I'm on home hemodialysis and I do it myself.  I guess he had never heard of it before. He was especially impressed with the fact that I cannulate myself.  He asked me if I was a nurse or medical student and I said no.  He made me feel super smart :).

He told me about a spinal freeze (I think that's what he called it?) that'll be put in my back for numbing.  I'm always a bit scared about needles in the back for some reason.  When I asked him what kind of pain I can expect, he compared it to the needle that I would get in the mouth from a dentist.  Still scary to me!  He said anyone who can stick needles in their arms and has been through all I have been through could handle the needle in the back.  I told him that I had had an epidural before...and I was scared out of my mind.  The anesthesiologist had to actually give me a relaxing needle in the vein of my hand before doing the epidural.  It helped.  I also remember being pissed that my epidural stopped working about 1.5 days later because the nurse forgot to flush it.  I went through all of that and didn't even get the full benefit of the epidural!

Ahh, but I digress.  He said that the epidural needle is much larger than the needle that would be used for this particular surgery.  He said this surgery would make me numb from just under the chest all the way down to the bottom of my legs.  He said I had a choice of being put to sleep during the surgery or staying awake with minimal anesthetic.  There would obviously be a blanket covering my mid-section so I wouldn't be able to see into my flesh.  Um..i'll choose to go to sleep please.

After that, my appointment was done.  It was about 12:30-1pm ish and my appointment started at 7:30am. I came home, ate, did some work on the computer...and now I'm wiped!  So I apologize in advance for any spelling/grammar mistakes :)

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