Surgery in 2 days-What things should I have on hand when I come home? Starting to freak out

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New Member

Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 6/30/2013 7:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi all,
I have a giant paraesphageal hernia and I am having a modified Nissen fundoplication on Wednesday. From what I have read, it seems that my condition is similar to Alcie except that mine is just something I had vs. an accident.  From what my surgeon has told me, I am going to be on pureed foods for 3-8 weeks because they are doing alot of work on my esophagus and wants it to rest.
So what did everyone have at home in terms of food when you got out of the hospital? Someone suggested I get a Vitamix. Did anyone else have this? Was it something you found helpful? It seems expensive but since I probably won't be going out to dinner much  rolleyes I figure that it may be worth it if it helped with meals.
Did any of you use any protein mix? If so, what kind? I cook big meals at holidays but I eat whatever is handy otherwise so I am a bit clueless when it comes to making something just for me or what recipes to look for.  I was told no Boost or Ensure because they have too much sugar.
My anxiety is high just thinking of cutting out sugar and coffee. Two of my favorite things. I am a Dunkin Donuts regular!  How long did you go without those things? Or did you cut them out? 
I am just so worried that I won't feel 'normal'.  How long before you said to yourself, "Gee, I am feeling really good again!" I am freaking out in my head and trying to be brave about this because I am really at the point that I am too symptomatic and with 85% of my stomach in my chest I am getting winded easily and get chest pain after eating. (Well established that it is not cardiac).
Can anyone help??

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 57
   Posted 6/30/2013 10:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Bea,
I know the few days before hand can be quite nerve racking.

Alas, your sweet tooth will be fulfilled. Jello is a good food to have. I had a protein mix that was not dairy based and did not form a creamy consistency. I would mix that into my jello for protein. I remember feeling so hungry but not wanting to eat (mostly due to my intolerance to pain meds). Clear liquids are great but really have no nutrition besides sodium. Pick up either a liquid or gummy multivitamin to supplement.

My doctor wanted me on clears for an entire week. Complete torture. You can make thinned out puréed soups that won't affect your wrap. My husband did this with potato soup. I also made a carrot soup.

I desperately wanted something with some texture. Saltines or club crackers are superb. Just make sure they're complete mush before swallowing. Warm teas are also nice in the morning as your wrap will probably feel tighter then. I'd stay far from coffee personally, but others may be okay with it a few weeks out.

A side note. I would avoid going overboard on dairy. It's easy to do too. Puddings, yogurts, icecream... They tend to cause bloat. So eat sparingly.

Once your surgeon okays it, you can incorporate mushy foods like refried beans or baked potatoes. I would thin out their consistency with broth or some kind of liquid to help with the swallowing.

I don't think a vitamix is necessary, but it is an option.

Best of luck with your surgery. You'll have some quality couch time ahead of you. Get your Netflix account ready.


Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2013
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 7/1/2013 12:31 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Bea,

I was also a bit freaked out in the days before my surgery and I had put off actually having it for four years. Now I'm Day 11 post operative and feel quite good. Most of my previous fears - such as having awful pain from trapped gas after the procedure, or being nauseated - never became reality. I had prepared myself prior to the surgery by buying a blender (which I have not used yet), liquid forms of Paracetamol and Cold and Flu remedy (also haven't used those as I can swallow tablets). I bought a mortar and pestle in case I needed to crush tablets (haven't used that either). It sounds as though your oesophagus might need more of a rest than mine did though, so the above items may be helpful to you.
I bought all different kids of soups; baby foods; ice cream; pureed fruit and soft canned fruits of all kinds. I have discovered I can eat an omelette (plain with a little grated cheese) with no problems; also the soft inner part of quiche provided it doesn't have a chunky filling. I can also enjoy plain sweet biscuits dunked in tea (and not decaffeinated either, my surgeon said as long as I wasn't ridiculous with caffeine, I could have a small amount as in a cup of tea in the afternoon and maybe a cup of coffee in the morning). I've eaten soft noodles with no issues either. I would suggest anything that is very soft will go down ok once also chewed well. Definitely get some form of vitamin supplement that you can easily ingest - I swapped the horse pills I had been taking for a more expensive but easier to swallow mini multivitamin pill.

Remember to sit upright when eating and try to concentrate on breathing out before you swallow each mouthful - I find I swallow a great deal less air this way and don't have problems with excess gas that way. Rest as much as you can but also get up and do little walks around the house regularly too to keep your circulation going and help gas dissipate.

I hope your surgery goes well and your recovery too. I'm catching up on the all the NCIS series I didn't watch. Today I've managed some light housework and a trip to see a nearby friend so life is getting back to normal for me fairly smoothly, I hope the same happens for you.

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