Unexpected Surgical Nightmare: Round 5

Getting Admitted: Round One  

I have to say I hate being stuck as a patient in the hospital.  It’s like being in jail but you are getting medicated the whole time.  So the first night is always the worst.  They have no more major tests or studies to conduct, however your nurses and techs are coming around every three to four hours to give medicine and take your vitals.  Then there is the bed which isn’t exactly uncomfortable but it isn’t like being in your own bed.  On top of everything else, they don’t allow you to eat for a while during the time they are running studies and deciding what to do.

After the first night, my Doctor came in and told me that they are going to run a bunch of tests and if they don’t find anything they are going to do an exploratory surgery to see if they can find anything inside me that could be causing the problem.

I went through several tests and all of them came back with varying results.  I was low on potassium, I had swelling in my small intestines, my bowel was full and needed to be emptied and I had some minor gallbladder stones.

After nearly a week in the hospital, and about 1000 tests and studies, I was put in for surgery.  Yet another laparoscopic procedure to see if they can find the source of the problem. There was nothing remarkable found in the surgery.  I had two adhesion’s that were fusing my colon and bladder together and my large and small intestines together.  I stayed in the hospital one more night and was sent home with a couple of prescriptions for antibiotics, nausea, pain and inflammation.  I thought I was done with the whole nightmare, but I was barely done with the first chapter.

Upon getting home, I again took it easy and tried to rest a lot.  I took my medicine as directed and low and behold, the pain came back.  This time worse than the last.  Vomiting, slight fever, high blood pressure, chills, doubled over and ready to scream. I called the doctor and he said, back to the ER.

Unexpected Surgical Nightmare: Round 2

Traditions Medical Center: The Worst Emergency Room I have ever been to!

Once I got to Traditions, I walked up to the triage nurse and was told to take a seat as he proceeded to take my vitals.  My blood pressure was extremely high (156/107) due to both my agonizing pain and my anxiety of hospitals, and to top it off my temperature was around 100.5.  He insisted on retaking all the vitals and got the same results again. I was obviously not feeling well but the guy was just not getting it.

The place was an absolute mad house!  I mean, they had beds lining all the hallways filled with people, nurses running around like they were lost, codes being called all over the place, doctors who looked sleep deprived and overwhelmed and PA’s (Physician’s Assistants) who were trying to read notes and make arrangements to see the new and less serious patients.

I started out in a cozy little room with two nurses; Sara and Tara.  Sara was arrogant and completely unsympathetic to my situation and Tara was trying to go on a break the whole time they were getting me situated.  I only saw the Sara once and Tara twice.  After about 45 minutes of sitting in agony and dry heaving, a PA finally came in.  Much to my surprise, she said she would not offer me anything for pain because she thinks I was a pain med seeker, thanks to all the junkies in Florida.  I was absolutely furious that instead of letting me speak, she had immediately judged my situation.  Finally, when she got done listening to her self-righteous ideals of what she “Thought” was the situation, she gave me an opportunity to talk.  I simply said, as kind as possible, “My Doctor sent me here due to a complication from my surgery 5 days ago. Before you start assuming that you know what is going on, would you please take the time to review my chart.”  she got really quiet while reading my chart and instead of apologizing, she ordered me 1 MG of Dilaudid through my IV, which is a heavy and very effective IV Pain Relief medicine.  After dosing me up with meds, she told me that they have a super critical patient coming and needed to move me to another area to accept this patient.  Within 5 minutes, my wheel chair arrived and I was put into a room with a dying woman who had complete renal (kidney) failure.

At this point, my pain was coming back and I was starting to feel the urge to throw up.  I was truly in agony and doing my best to keep it together.  The numb throbbing pain, had turned into a miserable stabbing pain and the Dilaudid was not helping at all.  I was crying and curled up in a ball on my stretcher with my boyfriend rubbing my head telling me that we were in the right place to get answers and I had to try and relax.  Relaxing was not an option as the throbbing raged on and I felt completely helpless.  Here I am waiting for some answers, and nothing….. more nothing and……. oh what do you know … more nothing.

Unexpected Surgical Nightmare: Round One

Hey everyone!! I have so much to tell you about the last few weeks.  I sort of cannot believe this is all happening because I was feeling totally healthy and normal three weeks ago, pre-surgery.  This is the whole story broken into a couple of posts.  I hope y’all enjoy the Unexpected Surgical Nightmare Mini Series.  It will answer almost all of your questions about what has been going on since my original surgery.

So here is the beginning of what happened….

The Big Decision to Tie my Tubes and Stop having Babies

My boyfriend and I have three kids now, two boys and a girl; so we made a decision to be done with having babies so we can focus on them and their little bright futures.  As you all may already know, each child needs to have their own room or there should be no more than two kids in a room.  In addition to living accommodations, they need their own clothing, their own bathroom supplies, their own gear for sports and other activities and their own life insurance and college savings plans.  It is beyond expensive now-a-days to raise a child.  Anyways, we made the difficult decision to tie my tubes and maybe get him a vasectomy just to be extra careful.  After making up our minds, the doctor did his best to talk us out of doing the surgery but it was set in our minds that we will be going through with this surgery.  Making a decision like this wasn’t something that came easy.  We love our children and of course we have thought about having more, but the reality is that we need to focus on supporting and raising the kids we have without breaking the bank and killing our lifestyle.  So many of my friends and family asked me why I didn’t do the surgery when I had my c-section back in September, and the answer is simply this, we weren’t ready to make a decision that big at the time.  Our sweet baby boy came a month early which gave us no time to make a decision and I wasn’t going to rush the decision and end up regretting it. Every person is entitled to make their own decisions about their bodies and I chose to wait just to be sure I was okay with the decision.  I really wanted to try for a girl, but to be completely honest, being a mom of two boys is already a lot to juggle, plus I own a business and try to do volunteer work here and there.  So anyways, we went through with the surgery after discussing all the possibilities in depth.

Little did we know….. Hell was about to break loose.

The Tubal Ligation

On January 21st 2016, I walked into the hospital to have a routine Tubal Ligation Procedure.  This is a Laparoscopy procedure that leaves two small incisions that are either stapled or sutured together to heal.  The recovery time is about two to five days depending on your pain tolerance.  It’s also an out patient procedure, so I went home that same day directly after the anesthesia wore off.

Upon getting home, I took it easy and laid in bed for the most part.  On Friday, I spent the day relaxing and getting caught up on some light work duties.  I was healing great and the pain was already receding but I had this numb throbbing pain in my lower abdomen.  I honestly didn’t think it was anything to worry about and I assumed it was normal at that point.

By the time Saturday rolled around, I thought it was over.  No more cramping, no more regular pains, just here and there that weird throbbing pain would hit me, but nothing Tylenol and rest couldn’t handle.

Sunday was when the fun began.  I woke up on Sunday, January 24th and had a fever, was throwing up and feeling miserable.  The pain was a constant stabbing agony that I couldn’t do anything to make it stop.  I doubled up on my pain meds per doctors orders (5 mg Percocets) and I laid in bed trying to figure out what I was going to do to make the agony stop.  Finally I realized the pain was bigger than me and it was time to get help.

I called my Doctor and asked him what I should do and his immediate response was to go to the hospital.  So Sunday night, I went to Martin Memorial Hospital South.  They did blood work, urine work, X-rays, a CT Scan with IV Contrast and a pelvic exam.  The only negative report they got was swelling around my small intestines and a slight bacterial infection. Once the PA came in to share the results, she basically put me on Percocets again, a gel for the infection and some light antibiotics for the swelling in my small intestines; then she sent me home with an appointment to see my doctor (who did the surgery) the next day at 10 AM.  She also urged me to not hold the baby and not lift more than 5 pounds and to bascially stay in bed.  I am not very good at staying in bed, in fact I absolutely hate laying in bed for hours on end and had no interest in doing that at all, but I did it.

When I arrived at the doctors office the next day, he took one look at me and said, “I am admitting you into the hospital because I don’t like that your vitals are unstable (my blood pressure was 165/106, low grade fever of 100.3, my oxygen was low at about 84 and my pain was about a solid 9 on a scale of 1-10), your still vomiting, your pale white and you don’t look well at all.  We need to see what is going on.” I honestly didn’t want to go back to the hospital again but he pleaded with me that it was super important and needed to be a priority.  He called the hospital (Traditions Medical Center in Port Saint Lucie -FL) and off I went.

At this point, I was hopeful that they would figure it out pretty quickly.  I mean, a tubal ligation is such a simple surgery so I was optimistic that it was probably just a small infection and antibiotics would do the trick.  What actually happened, was not at all what I expected and I didn’t realize that I was going to be severely sick and in agonizing pain for what seems like forever, and yes I am still in pain.  Trust me when I tell you, when you have a complication from a surgery, it affects everything in your life.  You don’t get to feel good or normal and you don’t know when it will end.  Anyways, before I get too ahead of myself, I went to Traditions hospital and all I have to say is….. Read the next post.