We will be going through our second Laparoscopic Surgery for my husband's Paraesophageal Hernia in the near future. We did this for the first time back in July of 2010 but the mesh failed to hold and now we're right back in the same position as before with the added possibility of actually having to open the chest if the laparoscopic is unsuccessful (which we won't know until they get into the surgery). If they have to go through the chest he will have to stay in the hospital quite a bit longer and that is extremely scary for my husband who hates hospitals to begin with.
The first surgery was extremely hard with my husband dropping from 235 lbs to 154 lbs very quickly. He had trouble swallowing water and it was a struggle for him to keep even the softest foods down. He became weak and I was so afraid to leave him even after a few weeks had passed (I had to return to work). It seemed to take forever for him to be able to hold any solid food down (which is typical, I know) but having to go through it all again is a nightmare!
My goal for joining this forum isn't to whine about the past (thank goodness, right?!)...but I would like to hear about some of the things you did to assist in your recovery so that I can help my husband. He has been depressed and fearful about having to go through this a second time and I'm concerned that he hasn't put on enough weight since the original surgery (he's at about 185 now, 6'2"). Normally I would say he is at a healthy weight but I'm afraid if he drops weight again that it will be a traumatic stress on his heart and body. I've bought a Magic Bullet Blender to make shakes and protein drinks for him and I'll be stocking up on pudding, soups and jello. At least we kind of know what to expect this time around; I think having that knowledge is helpful!
I know that we will get through this. I love him very much and will do whatever I can to help him with his recovery. However, we don't have any family/friends here that will be able to help (e.g. talk with him and keep his spirits up), and while I will happily take care of him sometimes I worry if there's something more that I could be doing to help...especially when he is hurting, scared, depressed and there's nothing I can do. I think just being able to talk with people who have been through this will provide information and comfort to us both. I've already read about how holding a pillow to your stomach when coughing can help. It might sound simple but I thought...GENIUS!! I would have never thought of that!!
Anyway, that's where we are. I plan on logging on and reading your posts daily. Thanks for your help/support through your posts. It feels great to have someone to talk to!! So glad I found you!! :)