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Wolfie40
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 947
   Posted 2/13/2009 4:48 AM (GMT -7)   
Well surgery is fast approaching and my nerves are starting to get the best of me. I think about it most of the day wondering if I will have any complications or will I wake up from the anesthesia. I do have complete trust in my surgeon doing the job safe and correct but the mind tends to wander from time to time thinking what if. I also wonder if I should be going through with the surgery as I have felt okay for the last week. I assume that this is normal for anyone about to have surgery, but is there anyway to help put the mind at ease? The hardest part is going to be when I go to the hospital on Wed. Will my wife have to drag me or when I'm wheeled into the O.R. Wow!! my mind is going to be saying "Get me outta here"
I know that everything will be fine! I just need to vent or whine a little.
So! If any of you have any tips or advise for me that would be greatly appreciated and thank you for letting me get this of my chest.

P.S. Some co-workers advise is that I quit reading,researching everything.

FallColors
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 1220
   Posted 2/13/2009 5:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello Wolfie40,

It helped me to focus on getting everything ready for when I come home. Clean the house, pay the bills, take out the trash, get the bedroom ready, go to the Library and get books, rent movies, etc. Getting everything ready helps you feel more in control and ready for what comes. I'm praying the surgery goes well and you have a speedy recovery!
Diagnosed with rectal Crohn's in early 2007.  Several peri-rectal abscesses and two fistulae with setons.  Allergic to Remicade and Humira.  Currently on 6MP, and vitamins D and B-12.


gachrons
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 4527
   Posted 2/13/2009 6:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Good advice given here at least you are able to prepare ahead. I had to go home the evening before my hospital stay and do the shopping for my teen the same night they wanted to send me out by ambulance. Drove myself to the hospital a 2 hour drive.Landed there and cried some more needless to say I was a wreck. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.. the mind can play havoc on us sometimes. You are lucky you have a wife to visit and help you threw this. Perhaps giving us a list of things you packed or something would help.We will be here to coach you on and ease your worries... lol gail
Hallarious woman over 50 ,CD ,IBS 27 years--resection,fistula's,obstructions,hemmies,and still alive.lol gail


sammies
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 493
   Posted 2/13/2009 10:00 AM (GMT -7)   
Wolfie--I am with you and sending good vibes. My surgery is scheduled for 2/24 and I'm having lots of the same thoughts. I was glad to see your post and hope for some advice.

B/c I'm having an ostomy and b/c I've never had surgery, I'm researching lots too-it helps to show and share the research. I felt so much better when my brother looked at the ostomy pics. I want my husband to read the surgery procedure stuff. Today, I said I'd not hit the health sites and give myself a bit of a break but here I am. :-) I just want to know everything and I find the company here very comfoting.

I too wonder if I'm going to completely freak as I'm on the gunnery and with the anesthesiologist. Will I cry? After the clean out, no food for 2 days, dehydration, and anxiety--I most like won't be in control. It's scary. But like you said, it seems normal.

I have my stoma nurse appt, pre opt, and a gyn appt next week--I don't know if that's too much or if it's good to make the days go by. I'm going to get my bags ready--what I need for the first 2 days and what I'll need after that. I've got lots of books--choosing to take the lighter ones to the hospital and some fluffy magazines. Dvd player, ipod, ear plugs. . .

good luck to us both!
24+ years with Crohn's/colitis; fistulizing crohn's; pentasa; started humira 7/1/08;codeine for D; sometimes supplements: MSM, e, selenium, C, B complex, multi, iron; recent meds to get through til surgery include propranolol and xanax


JAB
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2003
Total Posts : 351
   Posted 2/13/2009 12:22 PM (GMT -7)   

I would probably say that if you didn't feel a bit overwhelmed and anxious something is wrong. I like your sense of humor where you are waiting to run for it as soon as you get over to the hospital. Not that I know anything about surgery but living with crohns for the past 12 years i've seen all the tests and had my 4th scope yesterday. Surgery may be in the forecast for me as well.

Don't focus so much on the surgery but try to focus on the time after that where the surgery will be behind you and you can move forward.

 

Best wishes.

JAB

Post Edited (JAB) : 2/13/2009 12:27:12 PM (GMT-7)


Wolfie40
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 947
   Posted 2/13/2009 4:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks all, it's great to have people like you there when you need them.Like I've said in the past you are like family to me.
I had my pre-physical done and the test results we're good. I am 5 days out and today I could not take and Vitamins or asprin. I'm going to eat good tomorrow and Sunday as my food choices are not going to be good for a while after that.
As for packing for the hospital, I was going to take a dvd player and some movies,a book to read and a Nintendo DS. My choice of clothes was going to be my slippers, pj top and bottoms and maybe a robe. Is there anything else that I should be taking?

Bammer
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 381
   Posted 2/13/2009 5:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Wishing you the best Wolfie. My surgery is 3 months away so tooo much time to think about it once the decision was made. Will be looking for updates.

55 yr. old F dx. CD 07/07
Was on prednisone for three months but no medication for next 11 months.
 Started weekly methotrexate injections 09/22/08.


FallColors
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 1220
   Posted 2/13/2009 5:46 PM (GMT -7)   
I remember my first surgery well. It was long ago sfter a skiing accident (all better now). I checked in, changed, and was waiting in the pre-op area when I realized I was getting more and more anxious. I told the nruse and she said it is common. She gave me a mild sedative and I felt nice and calm. I was joking around and had not one care in the world. Nice!! So if this happens to you, don't try to be a hero and tough it out. Ask for a sedative. I find the waiting in the pre-op area is almost the worst part -- you can wait an hour or more (guess that means someone ahead of you was worse off than they thought and needed more time in the OR).

Just keep thinking about the benefits you will get from the surgery. When you feel your mind wndering into negative place, force yourself to think of something positive. Like how you will soon be up and about and feeling better! And you will be able to get back to doing fun things and normal things, rather than suffering in pain!
Diagnosed with rectal Crohn's in early 2007.  Several peri-rectal abscesses and two fistulae with setons.  Allergic to Remicade and Humira.  Currently on 6MP, and vitamins D and B-12.


Wolfie40
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 947
   Posted 2/14/2009 5:02 AM (GMT -7)   
I know that the worst part is going to be waiting in the pre-op room. I will ask if they have anything for me as a sedative to relax me. I hope that I have the right surgery, I'd hate to wake up and see that I just had a sex change or a face lift. lol

gachrons
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 4527
   Posted 2/14/2009 5:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Ha Ha funny about the not so funny operations for other surgeries.. one surgery at a time please..I took a picture with me when I went it felt more like home.I spent every morning after the first 2 days washing socks and underware.As I was a couple of hours from home I wished I would have packed more.I used to have to wash them up every day as I did have some D for a few days and wore some little diapper things that were quite useful and the underware helped keep them in place.I am a sock person too and got to have them socks on.With all the good vibes and knowledge you got here it should help out some ..Is this your first operation for any type of surgery? lol gail
Hallarious woman over 50 ,CD ,IBS 27 years--resection,fistula's,obstructions,hemmies,and still alive.lol gail


elexis
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 101
   Posted 2/14/2009 7:38 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello, Make sure to take ear plugs Seriously...It was a life saver for me...The hospital provided it for me but, invest in some.....Listen this is the worst part it's getting over that hilll because once it's over u have a new lease on life (as I like to call it) It's totally normal to freak and research and get even more freaked out but if you look at what the outcome will be it's allot better! I wish u the best!
Dx w/ Crohn's Disease May 2000
Medication: Imuran 150 Mg, Asacol 400MG
Dx w/ Hypothyroid 2001
Medication: Levoxyl 88MCG
Small Bowel Resection November 2008


straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13451
   Posted 2/14/2009 10:48 AM (GMT -7)   
Take your own bed pillow from home. I hate hospital pillows and I liked smelling my own pillow anyway. If you weren't somewhat nervous we would think you were crazy,lol. But, really all kidding aside its just not as bad as you think. Talk to your dr about pain control, mine was managed very nicely. Also, this is real important, listen up. When they come in to get you out of bed, take a bed pillow and lightly press it against your stomach upon rising from the bed. Something about applying that light pressure helps when getting up. Also, when they come in and want you to cough, lightly press the pillow to your stomach, it just helps. Do get up and walk as much as you can in order to wake your bowels up and get them going. Walking is the best way to wake them up and it will help you get your strength back. Keep your clothing towards anything loose fitting, nothing binding. take a DVD player and movies, laptop if there is an internet connection, books just whatever to pass the time away. I really think the DVD player is a good idea. It can get really noisy in the hospital so good ear plugs are a must.
 
Just remember one thing, you are going to feel so much better once the surgery and recuperation is behind you. Good luck to all of you with your pending surgeries...Susie


Wolfie40
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 947
   Posted 2/14/2009 12:16 PM (GMT -7)   
This is my second surgery, I had a hernia surgery when I was 5 or 6 years old. I don't remember much about it though.
Thanks for the tip on ear plugs, now if there was only a way to keep the nurses out of the room every 15 minutes checking my vitals. Talk about not being able to sleep. They could keep you plugged in and have a wireless monitor that they can see at the nurses station.
Great idea on the pillow for getting out of bed, but what do they make you cough for?
Is it true that when they try and get you out of bed that you don't have the strength to do so?

Rider Fan
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1445
   Posted 2/14/2009 1:11 PM (GMT -7)   
elexis said...
Hello, Make sure to take ear plugs Seriously...It was a life saver for me...The hospital provided it for me but, invest in some.....Listen this is the worst part it's getting over that hilll because once it's over u have a new lease on life (as I like to call it) It's totally normal to freak and research and get even more freaked out but if you look at what the outcome will be it's allot better! I wish u the best!


Elexis, how much did they take out? How long was your recovery? Are you all better now? Are you taking maintenance meds?

Sorry for all the ?'s, thanks.
32 y/o male. Dx'ed in 1999. No surgeries.

Current meds: 25mg Methotrexate. 8mg prednisone. Udo's Choice Probiotics (30 billion).

Tried SCD, didn't work, now avoiding gluten and dairy.


Pibbin
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 163
   Posted 2/14/2009 1:20 PM (GMT -7)   
You've gotten lots of great advice. It is normal to be anxious beforehand. The few weeks prior to surgery I was taking Xanax in the evenings to quiet my worries and help me sleep. My GI insisted on it, I thought I wouldn't need it, but it was a lifesaver. I was pleased that in the pre-op room, once they got my IV in, the anesthesiologist said it was standard to give me something to relax me a bit before surgery. I was awake and coherent, but things slowed down a bit. Then it wasn't stressful to be wheeled into the surgery room, arranged on the table (skinny, narrow table!!), and then they put the strong stuff in, and next thing I knew I was in recovery.

Thinking good thoughts for you! Just try to think about the end result. I am feeling so much better now with my temporary ileostomy than with a diseased colon in my body, and I am completely med-free!
Dx Mild Proctitis 7/06 at age 33, Dx Severe Pan Colitis 5/07, Dx Crohn's Colitis 10/07
Failed Asacol, Lialda, 6-MP, Canasa, Rowasa, Proctofoam, Entocort, Remicade, Humira
10/10/08 colon removed, temporary ileostomy
11/10/08 FINALLY off prednisone after 18 months
2nd of 3 surgeries planned for '09 to form j-pouch


belleenstein
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1010
   Posted 2/14/2009 1:31 PM (GMT -7)   
My advice is not to bother taking all that electronic stuff with you. You will probably be out of there before you feel well enough to concentrate on it and it will just be another thing for someone to be tempted to steal. Maybe an MP3 player or radio, but seriously I doubt you will have the attention span to watch a movie.

You need to cough to keep your lungs clear and reduce the risk of developing pneumonia. Especially if you have ever smoked.

Wolfie you will be fine. Mostly our fears centre around not being in control. At some point you need to reconcile yourself to trusting the team that will be taking you through the surgery. Talk with your wife and make sure she understands that she must become your advocate. Discuss with her how you want to be treated. Make sure she feels empowered to speak on your behalf, whether it is about pain medication or whether you are strong enough to get up and walking. Everything that is troubling you should be on the table before you go to the hospital. Once that's done, it really is time for you to step on to the sidelines and let the team take over for a little while.

Best wishes. We'll be looking for your post-op posts!
Belleenstein:

30+ years living with Crohn's.


tbraz
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 280
   Posted 2/14/2009 6:52 PM (GMT -7)   
I think your co-workers are wrong, the best thing that you can do for yourself is be prepared and know exactly what you are getting into. I'm sure that they don't understand that doctors don't always tell you everything, and it helps to hear from others who have gone through what you are about to. You have to filter the good and the bad and realize that some have complications, while others don't and hope for the best.

I was surprisingly calm in the pre-op, and when the anesthesiologist comes in, they will give you something before you go into the OR. They told me that I wouldn't remember anything after they put it in my IV and I didn't believe them. When I woke up, my brother asked me to tell him what he said to me, and I honestly couldn't remember a thing! (it was peter piper picked a peck of pickled peppers) tongue

When I woke up from surgery, I knew instantly that while I had pain, it would get better. By the time I went home (5 days later) I had no pain (other than the incision area). They will give you the "good stuff", and I suggest that you get up as soon as possible after surgery, even if you can only get across the hall. The more pain meds you are on can slow the bowels from waking up and walking will also alleviate the horrible gas pains you will get if you don't. You won't be allowed to drink anything until your bowels wake up, ask your surgeon if you can chew gum during this time. It's not 100% proven, but is said that it can also help wake up the bowels.

Totally agree with the pillow idea, I posted on another forum about having one at home in case you have animals or small children that could pounce on you when you get home. Good luck with everything and hope to hear you are healthier and recovering soon!
Theresa

Originally diagnosed with CD in 1991
Now saying "Undetermined Colitis"
3 step Jpoucher as of 4-15-08


Wolfie40
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 947
   Posted 2/15/2009 4:38 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow! Thanks for all of the great advice, it makes me feel a whole lot better. I will post after surgery and let you know how it went.
I do have pets, I have two Chocolate labs and they love to lay on me.One of my concerns is having one of them jump on me and hurting me. I know they don't know what I went through and I would never punish them for it. I just don't want to injure myself. I think that the pillow idea will work.
You say that pain meds keep the bowel from waking up, should I attempt to tough it out or keep the pain meds to a minimum. Is there really that much pain? Why is there horrible gas pain, is there a fart stuck sideways? lol! Pardon my joking, it helps me cope with this.
belleenstein, your right are fears are centered around not being in control. Just like if your in the woods at night and hear noises but can't see them,fear takes over... Very well put!!!
I do trust my surgeon, just not the anesthesiologist as I have not met him/her yet. They could be Dr kervorkian!!! lol! I don't want to go peacefully, I want to go kicking and screaming just like when I was brought into the world.. Just kidding!!
How was waking up afterwards, was it freaky not knowing where you are? I heard that men tend to fight when they wake up from surgery I guess I'll find out if my nurse has a black eye..

Thanks again everyone..
Wolfie

gachrons
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 4527
   Posted 2/15/2009 6:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Wolfie perhaps start training your dogs to stay down now might help and I used to use a fire place thingie for a door block to keep my dog off the bed when I needed to .Your right about dogs, some are very active. Mine was good but the worry was there ,he seemed to know that I was sick though and was good. I remember coming home from my first surgery and his ears were flapping up and down when he seen me... lol gail
Hallarious woman over 50 ,CD ,IBS 27 years--resection,fistula's,obstructions,hemmies,and still alive.lol gail


FallColors
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 1220
   Posted 2/15/2009 6:32 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Wolfie,

Some procedures require that then pump CO2 into your abdomin to inflate it. They can see things better, and when thay are done, they try to get it all out. But some will remain and gets absorbed into your body. It will take a day for it to dissipate. It rises to the highest point, so for example if you sit up for a long period of time you can get sore shoulders. It just feels achy for a couple of hours. Best thing to do if this happens is change positions. You will eb on pain meds so you probably won't feel anything.

I woudl take as much pain medication as you need. The body heals faster if it isn't stressed with pain. When you are in pain you tense your body and you don't breath normally. Less oxygen slows healing too, so be painfree and breath deep! Also, take the pain meds on time -- don't wait until it hurts. It takes much longer for the pain meds to take effect if you are hurting.

You will meet the anestheiologst when you go into prep. After you wake up, it is quite common to feel nauseious and anxious. This is just the anesthetics. You can feel disoriented too, but I thnk that is from the drugs too. Tell them about it and they will give you drugs in your IV that act very fast. I hate coming out of anesthia -- that 30 - 60 minutes can be bad. I hate that druggy feeling. I have learned to force myself to relax and go with it. Just remember that most of what you will feel is from the drugs and it will pass within an hour. It may seem that the nurses aren't very caring or nice because they keep telling you that you are OK when you feel so anxious, etc. But be assured they are watching your vitals like a hawk (pulse, oxygen, breathing, etc.). It would ruin their day if you died on their shift. ;-) They just know that it is the drugs and it will pass. Also, it takes a day or so for your body to completely rid itself of the anesthia drugs. You may feel nauseious and just icky. Don't be shy about telling the nurses how you feel and what you need. That is what they are there for and you are paying them to do it. You will live through this!!
Diagnosed with rectal Crohn's in early 2007.  Several peri-rectal abscesses and two fistulae with setons.  Allergic to Remicade and Humira.  Currently on 6MP, and vitamins D and B-12.


Wolfie40
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 947
   Posted 2/16/2009 5:19 AM (GMT -7)   
Well, I picked up everybodies favorite bowel cleaner Half-lytly. I have to start it Tuesday at noon by taking 2 pills and than wait for a BM and then start drinking the crud.Yummy! The big day is Wed. at high noon but I need to be there at 10 probably to get prepped. What should I bring for clothes? Will they make me wear the gown the whole time? I'm hoping that I get a private room, my last hospital stay I had to share a room and we we;re crammed in there like sardines while all the other rooms we're private.
I've been off asprin and vitamins for 3 days now and forgot to ask if I can still take my Probiotics.

hspenser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 544
   Posted 2/16/2009 5:57 AM (GMT -7)   

Wolfie...

I am the biggest baby when it comes to blood, pain and needles and I look back on my Nov 2008 resection as a piece of cake.

The best advice I was given was from this site....I was told to be sure to discuss with the surgeon the pre-op issues of the cathetor, the NG tubes and so forth...so I told my surgen that I needed to be out for those things...and no problem, once in pre-op they asked me a few questions to be sure I was who I said I was...the IV lines were already in place...so then I got a hit of joy juice...went spacey for a few seconds...then out like a light....woke up in a lot of pain so I just punched/clicked the IV pain line and in a few moments I was asleep again.  I was up and walking after a day and 1/2 in the ICU (the ICU is just a pre-caution)  the cathetor and the NG tubes were removed at some point but I can't remember....I kept taking the pain drups for about 3 or 4 days....walked as often as i could....

I did have a pillow held against by stomach the whole time I was in bed.....operated on a Tuesday, home the following Monday, back to work for a few hours three days after that,  wife went up north to care for her mother 5 days after I got out of the hospital so I had to care for myself......had the staples removed one week after discharge from the hospital and was back to work full time the day after that....flew out of town for a sales call less than a week after that.

THE BIGGEST WARNING I CAN GIVE:

Do Not Take Your Blackberry Or Computer With You Into The Hospital!!!!!!!!!

I know I sent off some very strange and confusing text messages and e-mails from my Blackberry.  I thought I knew what I was doing...but like a drunk driver I didn't have the control or connective thought process, while on the pain killers, that I thought I had.

As for the fear of the surgery and the anesthesia......Have you won the big Lotto?  You have almost the same chance of having a problem in surgery as do of winning the lotto....you will be fine.

Good luck.......


dx IBS 1999   UC 2000   CD 2001
Tested BIOGEN TYSABRI (gave me 2 years of remission)
tried Naltrexone Jan. 19, 2007 Stopped the Naltrexone July 28th...started Humira Aug 31st, 2007...current dose one shot every week. Also nightly dose of mesalamine.
Surgery Nov 4th, 2008 removed 30 inches of small bowel.
 Crohns is currently active and has been since April of 2005
52 yrs old


Irishmom4
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 457
   Posted 2/16/2009 7:07 AM (GMT -7)   
I bought one of those big body pillows for home. That way I could sleep with my husband and not worry about him bumping into me during the night. Also, you seem like you have a good sense of humor. Don't be afraid to converse and joke around with the people in the pre-op room and OR. It really helped me calm down and realize that they know exactly what they are doing. Don't try to tough it out without the pain meds while in the hospital it will only make things worse. Your body will stay stressed and not heal properly. Once you get home you can decide what you can tolerate.
Good luck and I'll say some prayers for you and your doctors.
Elizabeth
dx'd with Crohns 1984, I was in remission for 12 years
Bowel Resection surgery 2006, Now weaning off  Predisone after another flare. Started taking my Asacol again.


Wolfie40
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 947
   Posted 2/17/2009 4:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks All!
I start my clear liquid diet today and at noon I have to take 2 laxatives and then when I have my first BM the half-lytley starts. I go in tommorrow at 10 A.M and surgery is at Noon. I believe the surgeon said it would be a 2 to 2-1/2 hour surgery. I'm really surprised I'm calm and mellow yet. I thought I would ahve been a basket case by now. I think I'm calm because of all the support and knowledge that you have given me.
Thank you all!

Texan with Crohn's
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 362
   Posted 2/17/2009 4:44 AM (GMT -7)   
Good luck with your surgery!

I will remember these great words of wisdom when I give in to mine. :)
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