I was admitted electively to The Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield last week on Saturday 8th March, I underwent a laparoscopic procedure for 6 hours on the afternoon of Monday 10th March. Pre-operatively, because of my Pulmonary Hypertension I had a shuttle Walking Test, chest X-ray and ECG on the Thursday before my admission and I was started on an iloprost infusion intravenously on Sunday afternoon. I have never had iloprost before and the resulting headache and side effects made me feel quite unwell.
Monday morning before my procedure I was nil by mouth, but asked to take my regular oral medications before my anaesthesia, in the afternoon. I was given a dose of midazolam on arrival to the anaesthetic room after which I have very little recollection but was aware an arterial and central line were in the offing.
Post op I remember coming around and selling Slimming World to the Recovery Room Nurses and being given a warm blanket for my abdomen before being whisked up to HDU. On arrival on HDU I felt very dry and uncomfortable and my nose was blocked which rendered the nasal cannula I was wearing somewhat useless. I felt very nauseated too and was told my blood pressure was on the low side.
I don’t remember much clearly about being in HDU but I do remember being sick and seeing Dr Keily, one of my Pulmonary Hypertension consultants and being asked to pass water twice. After which I still was fitted for a Foley Catheter as my urine output was not adequate. I met my Surgeon and anaesthetist the next morning for a run down of events during theatre.
I stayed in HDU for a night and was transfused a unit of blood and much Hartmann’s solution. I felt much better the next day and after a few routine blood tests, my arterial line and central line was removed. I started to feel a little unwell with tachycardia soon after and I was moved to the PVDU where my temperature spiked and I remained tachycardic. Subsequently I was started on Tazocin iv and a chest x ray and blood cultures were sent.
It wasn’t until Thursday after my laparoscopy that I started to feel what I would consider well enough to go home but my CRP was over 60 and I needed another unit of blood. I was advised I would probably be ready for home Monday after a good 5 days of iv antibiotics and evidence of inflammatory markers coming down.
The whole elective surgery process has been much more serious and considered than any elective surgery I have had before my diagnosis of Pulmonary Hypertension and the attention to detail by my medical doctors and surgeons has been eye-opening as to how serious even controlled Pulmonary Hypertension can be.
I never expected to be going home as late as Thursday after a laparoscopic procedure and to have been kept in longer was unexpected but necessary under the circumstances.
I am no longer requiring strong pain killers post op, so the procedure has been a success for me already and I hope very much not to need another admission for a long while. I thank all staff and doctors for helping me and giving me the care and attention they did to get me safely through surgery and post-operative care.
I was deeply touched by your blogs. You are an exceptionally strong woman, far stronger than I am. The only thing that makes life worth living for me in the long term is the presence of people like you in this world, who have such clean hearts and yet have to suffer so much. I greatly value your presence in my life even if we do not know each other terribly well and will probably never meet. Whenever you think of giving up, apart from your near and dear ones also please think of the not so near and dear ones, like me, and realise then, adding everyone up, how very many you will leave behind and how very many will miss you and be poorer without you in every way. For this reason alone you have to go on. My prayers are with you daily and I am always here for you if you want to talk.
I hope you will be able to take what I have said as words from my heart and regard them as such while you are not wearing your professional cynic’s hat :))
Regards and much love,
Thank you John, I am touched by your comment. I don’t see myself as being clean of heart and find it easier to believe the negative things about myself that I generate. I’m back home rehabilitating and working towards getting back into my routine. After this experience I can honestly say I will appreciate feeling well when I do and I hope never to take being well for granted again.