Fundo and Hernia Surgery tomorrow

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txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/19/2013 12:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello all,
 
I posted here a few times the past couple of weeks. As a recap I am a 43 yr old male who has GERD and a Hietal Herina. I have been fighting both ailaments for 7 plus years. I will have a full wrap and hietal hernia repair tomorrow morning at 630 am. Thanks to many of you here, I have stocked my cabinets with Boost, Instant Breaksfast drinks, Ensure, Gatorades, chicken broth, beef broth, and beano. 
 
I have been following bcolt and SJ's recovery journal carefully, so I know the worst is yet to come after surgery. I intend on staying on a liquid diet for at least 7 to 10 days. I am 5'8 and 155 lbs, so I do not want to lose too much weight but I do not want to rush my recovery by starting solid food too soon. I just hope I can fight the hunger pains. I will try to post my experience after I get discharged on Wednesday.  Thanks again to bcolt, SJ, Dencha, and many more for the support and advice.

GC1pink
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts : 532
   Posted 8/19/2013 1:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Good luck for tomorrow! I'll be thinking of you and I'm sure everything will be fine! :-)

TonyG
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 254
   Posted 8/19/2013 1:12 PM (GMT -6)   
txman,

You've got a good stock running, just make sure somewhere along the way that you get yourself some protein, too. Boost and Ensure have some, but not nearly enough to support the healing process. Protein powder can be bought and added to yogurt, oatmeal, smoothies, milkshakes, etc. without changing the flavor much.

We're all rooting for you! Take it easy and remember that your body will tell you when you're ready for more food and activity. Don't be afraid of the pain meds and remember to walk as much as you can muster up the energy for. Once you're home, have a pillow handy to hold against your stomach for the occasional sneaky sneeze or cough, and keep hydrated. Use your arms to help yourself get up from laying down as your abdominal muscles won't be much help for a couple weeks. Sleeping on your right side will be easier than your left side.

You'll be on your way to feeling much better soon enough. Remember that the swelling around the wrap will peak a few weeks in...right as you think you're starting to feel okay again.

Take care of yourself and get lots of rest!
-TonyG-
-TonyG-
Nissen Fundoplication April 30, 2013
Pain-Free, Reflux-Free, Sleeping on my back!

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/19/2013 1:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Tony and Pink! I knew I forgot something! I will stop by the store later this week to get the protein and yogurt. I always sleep on my left side, so that will be an adjustment. Good point about having a pillow handy for sneezing and coughing...did not think of that.

alib6
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 8/19/2013 2:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Good luck I have mine on Friday the 23rd try and keep use updated
Ali

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 8/19/2013 8:25 PM (GMT -6)   
txman-

yes left side will be the sorest. The incision under the left side ribs gets worked over very much because that is used to hold the liver out of the way. I had great results sleeping in a recliner surrounded by pillows. If you have a comfy one I would use it the first week or 2. Ice pack and a heating pad helps with the soreness also.
Oh how having a pillow handy for coughs and sneezes is a life saver. If you have some protein drinks with higher calories that will help slow the weight loss.

Take care,
Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/20/2013 4:02 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks opnwhl4 and Ali. I ate a big meal last night and am paying for it today, the day of the surgery. I leave here in about an hour and I hope my stomach ache goes away otherwise I will be a miserable day. I should have just had something light last night instead of a heavy meal. Lesson number one....eat a light dinner the night before the surgery. Do not act like it is your last meal. tongue

alib6
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 8/20/2013 10:29 AM (GMT -6)   
Good luck hope it all goes well
Ali

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 8/20/2013 12:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Hopefully all went well and you are resting well in your room by now. Will be waiting to welcome you into the Wrapped Club when you are up to posting.

Take care,
Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

Ian Victor
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 214
   Posted 8/20/2013 7:46 PM (GMT -6)   
Txman- I'm one week behind you-- August 28th. Good luck. Hope all goes well!!

Ian

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/21/2013 12:01 PM (GMT -6)   
opnwhl4 and Ian,
 
I just arrived home 30 minutes ago. What an experience! Keep in mind that I went in for a complete wrap and hiatal hernia repair. Thank God I found this site before surgery. My surgeon and the hospital provided very little information regarding recovery.
 
20 Aug 2013 DDay
 
The staff took blood and x-rays before the procedure. I then went to preop and was put under. Prior to surgery I was strapped down and catherized. The surgery went well but I am having difficulty with recovery. The very first medication offered to me was Carafate by a young nurse. For those that do not know, Carafate is used to coat and soothe the lining of the stomach. I had to explain to her that I could not and would not attempt to swallow such a large pill. She then broke it in half and I still refused. After shift change, a more mature nurse entered my room and offered the Carafate watered down. I took it immediately. I started walking about 2 hours after the surgery to try and ease the pain from the gas. I really did not have any stomach pain at the time, just discomfort. Lesson learned: walk, walk, and then walk.
 
All I consumed on the day of the surgery was ice chips and a little water. No broth or anything else. My stomach felt ok but I could not urinate. I think this was caused from the catherization. Anyway, since I did not have very much pain just discomfort, I decided not to take a painkiller that night. Big mistake on my part. I woke up in terror around 4 am with my insides on fire. I was able to get the massive pain under control in about 30 minutes after asking the nurse for lori-tab. Lesson learned: take the painkillers.
 
21 Aug 2013 Day 2
 
I was finally able to urinate with some slight pain. Afterwards, I had broth and a few small sips of water. My stomach now feels overfull, so I have decided to just back off and stick with small sips of water. The doctor told me to walk at least an hour per day and he prescribed liquid lori-tab. I decided to have my medication refilled at CVS....big mistake as they do not handle liquid lori-tab. I then went to 3 other pharmacies and none of them handle the liquid form. I went ahead and placed my order with CVS but have called my doctor back to see if I can get the lori-tab in pill form until my other order can be filled. Lesson learned: have your medication filled at the pharmacy in the hospital immediately after discharge.
 
Surgeon asked me if I have been able to pass gas and the answer is no. He said not to force or put pressure on the stomach when trying to pass gas. I am about to take a beano as I finish this post. The inability to burp or pass gas is causing some minor discomfort.
 
Advice to others who are considering this surgery. Please, please, do not try and do everything yourself. I am divorced and live by myself and it is impossible to think straight after the procedure. My ex-wife has voluntarily stepped in and is now helping me with getting my medication issues straightened out. All-in-all I think my recovery minus of few mistakes on my part is going well. Despite how I currently feel, the surgery has already improved my overall health. My bp at check in was 145/86....after the procedure and at discharge it was 115/65. I know I have a long way to go to recovery and I am taking it one day at a time. Thanks again for all the support. I hope this post makes sense as I am still mentally and physically out of it. I will check back in later.

GC1pink
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts : 532
   Posted 8/21/2013 12:23 PM (GMT -6)   
So good to hear that all has gone well! Take it as easy as possible, and get well soon!

alib6
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 8/21/2013 12:36 PM (GMT -6)   
Glad your doing ok I'll be the same Friday

Ali

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 8/21/2013 3:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to the Wrapped Club!

Yep you learned some valuable lessons there. I always fill my scripts before leaving the hospital and take my pain meds to stay on top of pain. It's harder to get it under control if you let it get bad first.

Rest up and stay hydrated.

Take care,
Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/21/2013 4:03 PM (GMT -6)   
opnwhl4,

I have been sipping water about every 5 minutes since that is all my angry stomach will tolerate. I also had 4 oz of beef broth for dinner. Yum yum. I really did not want the broth but I thought I should add something to my diet besides water.

I took a 3 hour nap today and this is the best I felt since surgery. I am going to go watch my son's baseball practice session and walk around the field a few times to get my hour of walking in. I told my boss at work that I will try and be in on Monday. We are all office workers and the heavist thing I lift all day is a coffee cup. He said fine and to come back when ready. I am trying to save some of my sick time for peak swelling (10-14 days) because I do not know what to expect. I might try half days next week to see how it works out.

I was finally able to pass a little gas today. To me that is big progress. Also my stomach is making noise and I can feel things shifting around in there whereas after my surgery, my stomach was a big hard blob. Tomorrow I am going out to get my meds and a weight scale to keep an eye on my weight.

My doctor left me on nexium and my high bp. I did not ask him about taking tums or beano but did take one beano. I am thinking that gaviscon would help provide me some relief of the trapped gas. Any words of wisdom regarding gas? Many thanks all.

Ian Victor
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 214
   Posted 8/21/2013 4:25 PM (GMT -6)   
txman- Thanks for the update. I had some blood drawn today for pre-surgery purposes. I hope your stomach settles down. Bill is the authority on this procedure, so unless you hear otherwise, your recovery is probably typical and normal. I do appreciate a heads-up on what to expect. 7 days and counting for me. Feel better soon.

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/21/2013 4:32 PM (GMT -6)   
Ian,

I know it is tough waiting man. I was counting down the days and it seemed like my surgery date would never get here. I am very eager to follow your recovery progresss since we have a lot in common i.e. age, weight, etc.

If I had it to do over again, I still would have had the surgery but I would have consulted more than one baratric doctor and compared recovery plans. As I stated above, my surgeon provided little information about recovery. Oh well, it does not matter now. It is all about healing and getting better.

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 8/21/2013 9:57 PM (GMT -6)   
txman-

Yeah anything that will help with the gas is good. I even used an ant acid after my 2st redo due to an awful shoulder pain I found out was from some acid sitting at the wrap early on.

Those tummy noises will get worse. sometimes I thought I was having a conversation with mine. LOL!

I would try the half day 1st because after this surgery you will get tired easily for a while. It really does take a lot out of the body.

Did you ask for a script for an anti nausea med? If not. I would call and ask for one to have on hand just in case.

Unfortunately your experience with recovery info is all too common. That's one of the reasons why I stuck around here. I figured I could offer some help to those who were just like me...clueless after surgery.
I still get a laugh at my GI doc and my last surgeon. They both told me to write a book or something about my journey through the messed up nissen, redoes and torn esophagus. Both were glad I am a part of this forum and neither knew anything of a forum like this. I actually asked my last surgeon if he needed my help doing my surgery. That was in the OR right before they put me out. The last thing I remember before waking up was all of them laughing.

Take care,
Bill devil
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

Post Edited (opnwhl4) : 8/21/2013 10:05:03 PM (GMT-6)


txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/22/2013 5:28 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks again Bill. I am waiting for the surgeon's staff to call me back. I definitely would like a anti nausea medication to have on hand just in case.

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/22/2013 5:30 AM (GMT -6)   
Day 3

Last night was terrible. I am finding that sleep has become a major challenge. I have tremendous pressure / pain when trying to lie down flat in my bed (even on the right side). So I fell asleep last night in my recliner for 2 hours but woke up in my bed after 4 hours to excruciating pain. I got a total of 6 hours sleep last night but I took a 3 hour nap earlier that day. I am going to try and not take a nap today.

Anyway, I do not think I am getting enough water. I probably consumed around 12 oz of water yesterday along with 4 oz of broth. I think one of the moderators advised focusing on h20 intake versus the liquid diet at this point. My surgeon said he wants me to drink at least 30 oz of water daily but the pain becomes almost intolerable even after taking small sips. I think I am going to try even smaller sips.

Today’s goals are to take a shower, buy Milk of Magnesia, purchase a weight scale, and try to increase my H20 intake. Not all my news is bad today. I am able to take a slightly deeper breath than I was yesterday so that is encouraging. Also, I am able to pass gas more freely.
I am determined not to get depressed or down no matter what. I am improving a little each day and that is all anyone can ask for.

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/22/2013 3:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Day 3 continued.
 
Well today started off very rough but has improved dramatically. I was finally able to have my pain medication filled and it has made all the difference in the world. Shortly after taking my pain meds, I was able to drink 40 oz of water,  1 boost, and 1 ensure. Not sure if I am pushing my luck by trying to move up too fast. I have considered trying apple sauce but do not want to press my luck.
 
Bill or dencha,
 
Do you think I should push for 3 shakes a day for the next couple of days or would you start adding soft food like runny mashed potatoes and apple sauce? I have an appointment with my primary care physician tomorrow to get some anti nausea medication even though I have not had nausea. I want to be prepared after having so much trouble getting my pain medication. Any words of wisdom are welcome.
 
Thanks again for all the support. I really and truly do not know where I would be without you guys.
 
Rob

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 8/22/2013 3:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Rob-

Yes definitely try to add it some applesauce or runny mashed taters. Even pudding, runny oatmeal or malto meal is very good. Anything that goes down easy and has calories. It is more important to stay hydrated, but you still need calories since your body needs the energy to help it heal.
Remember not to drink anything cold for a while. That can make it harder to get things past the wrap. As for eating and such also remember to keep it to about a 1/2 cup or a little less depending on how it goes, but frequently. Like 4 to 6 times a day if you are able to.

I slept in my recliner for about 2 to 3 weeks with my surgeries. It was just more comfy for me. If you were out of pain meds that is a huge reason to be struggling to get things down or sleep very well.

Take care and take those meds when you need them!

Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/23/2013 8:44 AM (GMT -6)   
Day 4
 
Today was my first day of solid food. I had a half cup of runny grits in about 30 minutes. Although I am not hungry, I forced myself to eat them to build up my energy. I am still walking about an hour a day and have not had much shoulder pain at all.
 
My biggest problem right now is that I am running a low grade fever with a headache and congestion. I think I am coming down with a sinus infection, so I will be seeing my regular doc this morning for an antibiotic. I want to get ahead of any sinus issues because I do not want to sneeze or cough right now.
 
Bill,
 
I have been following your advice on food and drink. You have not led me astray yet....lol. I drink all my shakes, water, etc at room temp. I have not even tried to drink anything warm yet.

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 8/23/2013 9:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Good idea to get a head of a possible sinus infection.

Take care,
Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

txman4102
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/23/2013 11:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Bill and others,
 
My doc gave me an antibotic yesterday and I slept all day. It is now midnight but I think I have turned the cornor for the better. The fever and chills seem to be gone but now I have another dreaded pill to crush which brings me to my question. I have not tried to swallow any pills since the surgery. I have been grinding the pills and opening the capsules and mixing the contents in my drinks. Any idea on when you think it might be safe to swallow a small pill?
 
I know peak swelling is about 7-10 days out, so I might just wait until after that. Just wanted to get some advice from you guys that have been through this mulitple times. I hope you and the other contributors have a great weekend!
 
v/r
 
Rob
 
 
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