Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Almost Four Weeks

Happy Fat Tuesday to y'all!

Terry and I started the day with a breakfast of pancakes with Pennsylvania maple syrup from just down the road a piece and Massachusetts grape jelly from Bruce and Sue. A big glass of cold milk and a big cup of hot coffee....mmmm, heaven!

Being as on Thursday it will be four weeks since my surgery it was time to check in with the surgeon. Terry took me over to the hospital in Sayre to meet with the surgeon and urologist. It's a little over an hour drive over there and with the back brace on, I felt cramped in the Jeep Compass even with the seat all the way back. I was hurting slightly by the time we got there. I brought the walker with me because I refused to use the wheelchairs in the lobby. Might have been a poor choice, but I did get quite a bit of walking in as we went from one end of the building to the other...and back again.

The surgeon is pleased with the progress I've made even if I think I should be further along. Then again, he's had dozens of similar procedures while I've only undergone the one so I guess he should know if I'm progressing satisfactorily.We talked about my progress and why I chose to undergo the surgery in the first place. What trade offs I might have made vis-a-vis pain before surgery and pain three or four months from now. A lot of my choice was what I call prophylactic. I took into account the pain I was experiencing and potential for even more severe pain in the future based upon what the x-rays and MRIs indicated and decided to go under the knife now rather than later in the hopes I can enjoy the next 10-20 years relatively pain free while walking or standing.

I'm down to just using Tylenol as a pain killer. I'll be wearing the back brace and won't be allowed to drive for another month at least. That's when I have another appointment. In general, I left the surgeon's office feeling a little better if still inwardly disappointed with my progress.

(I mentioned the August fishing trip to the surgeon and he said, "Go for it!" He figures I'll be fine by then. It's a little over 6 months after surgery.)

We had some time between meeting with the neurosurgeon and our next appointment in Urology, so Terry and I walked all the way across the building to the cafeteria for lunch. Some excellent sushi (Wegman's California sushi), a delicious slice of pizza with meatballs, and a milk shake for each of us. (I also had a piece of cake (brownie?) with vanilla ice cream. Hey! I did a lot of walking!)

Then it was all the way back across the building to the Urology area. We were early...like two hours early...but got called right away because there had been a cancellation. That's when I learned my appointment was with the nurse who was supposed to take out my catheter. "Sorry, sweetie, they did that back on the 3rd before letting me go home."

Well, that led to a number of discussions about who, when, where, and why. What had already been established and I assume she knew how. All I could tell her was 1-They took it out because I insisted they take it out. (I was NOT going home with a catheter stuck in me!) 2-One of the doctors in the Troy Community Hospital gave the okay. 3-I was urinating regularly although there was some retention and the stream could be stronger.

The nurse took me to a little boys room and handed me a cup to fill and pointed to the bowl saying, "Empty some into the cup and the rest into the john. Get as much out as you can and then we'll see about this retention."

I did as she asked and she checked for how much fluid might still be in my bladder using her little ultrasound gizmo. I still held around 250 ml. She said something about I might have to be catheterized again to which I replied, "Never!" and "Over my dead body!" or words to that effect.

She went off to talk to the doctor and came back saying she had relayed my feelings to him about catheterizing and while he disagreed, he agreed to merely increase my dose of Flomax and do another check up in a month. Sounded good to me! I mean, the swelling and nerve disturbance from the surgery is still evident and could still be causing disruption in that area so let's give time and Flomax a chance to get things back to normal.

By 2:30 PM--what was to have been the midpoint between the two appointments, Terry and I were on our way home. It was still around 20 degrees but felt like T-shirt weather.

Once home we enjoyed a nice dinner of chicken jambalaya that Terry had left cooking in the crockpot while we were out.

1 comment:

Rev. Paul said...

I think that's a textbook definition of "mixed results", but still sounds generally positive.

Hang in there, buddy.