Fundoplication Surgery 12/12/2013

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BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/10/2013 11:37 PM (GMT -6)   
If I may, please allow me to share my story to date.... as I'm a nervous wreck at the moment. 1 more sleep and it's all gonna happen. No turning back. Ouch!


I was OK, before I started talking to a friend last week, who's recently had his gallbladder removed. All went well for his procedure and he said that he's even watched a video of his procedure on YouTube before his op. I then, somehow, remembered this on Sunday night, and started Googling. Bad move?

I have now seen a few fundoplication videos, which has cascaded into reading online forum posts. Oh nooooooo.....

That's when I started panicking inside. Shouldn't have done it, people around me have said.

Damage has been done and to counter it, instead of looking for post-op issues, I started looking for success stories, as I definitely need to calm myself down -- big time.

It has helped in a way and the success stories threads have been really helpful. Thanks, guys!


I also called my GI and he's assured me that it'll be fine and that the surgeon [whom he recommended] performing the procedure is very good and experienced.

He's also reiterated that based on the issues that I've had in the last couple of years [gastritis (2x), oesophagitis, severe reflux, chest pains] and tests that I've gone through [endoscopy, manometry and 24-hr pH monitoring] that this is the way to go.

Although my manometry result was normal and that the endoscopy didn't reveal much except for the gastritis and esophagitis [which were very painful, BTW] that he saw in August of this year, the 24-hr pH monitoring has shown a DeMeester score of 215.3 [not a typo -- very high indeed] and a total reflux time of > 53% [yes, I had reflux for 12 hours]. The bulk of that total reflux time was when I was asleep where, according to him, my esophagus was literally bathed in acid. Imagine how I'd feel each morning if I didn't have any med the night before, even with the help of a wedge pillow [that I've had for at least a year and a half now].

Although Nexium in the morning and Tazac before sleeping have helped in getting rid of the pain, his advise is to have the fundoplication surgery so as to eliminate the reliance on the meds. He did say that better off for me to be off meds while I'm still "young" [well, 45 is indeed still young :-)] and that I will have plenty of time for a few maintenance meds later on in life [as most, if not all, of us will go through]. So, for now, he said to talk to the surgeon about the fundoplication surgery as an option.

Having endured much pain in the esophagus, stomach lining and chest areas on and off in the past 2 and so years [also affected my teeth], including spitting blood if I've eaten something my body has now rejected [chocolate], I went for his recommendation.

I found the surgeon to be very calm and confident when I was talking to him, and hoping that he'll be the same during the procedure. :-)

Well, my GI has recommended him quite highly and my research on him has returned very positive results.

Surgeon had a look at the test results and he said he knows my GI quite well and that if he's recommended fundoplication, knowing how thorough my GI is, then there really isn't much to discuss apart from myself being prepared to undergo the procedure.

Of course I still asked the usual questions [even any fatality incident -- where luckily is zilch to date! Whew! :-)] and so, the op has now been booked.


Only thing that my GI did warn me against is losing too much weight. I'm 5'9" and slim [74 kgs / 162 lbs] and never been overweight [gaining weight has always been a problem of mine]. I guess I've never been a huge eater and used to smaller meals and I look after myself by going to the gym twice a week and playing basketball on weekends. Hence, one of the struggles, post-op, is going to be weight.

Being of Asian background, where rice is our staple food, looks like congee will be a regular meal for the next few weeks, post-op.

Nothing fat-free for the next few weeks, or up until I can go back to normal eating, so as not to lose too much weight.

Probably protein shakes as well to go with that so that protein, carbs and calories are taken care of.

I think that I've seen some posts re multivitamins [even chewables] are a no-no for the first week or 2?

I guess I've seen quite a few posts re food and drink suggestions that my mind's spinning at the moment as to which ones to try. I guess I'll find out more post-op.


Darn, really nervous. But it is time to tackle this issue now before it causes more problems.

God bless

BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/11/2013 6:05 AM (GMT -6)   
Got a call from the hospital and got told that they've booked too many for Thursday -- and mine was selected to get moved to the day after (Friday) since, according to the hospital staff who called me, it's the most complex one and will likely take a couple of hours.

Well, gotta think positive -- better that way so that the medical staff will be fresh on Friday morning. ☺️

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 12/11/2013 9:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi BabyKangaroo,

Definitely! No don't spend your extra "sleepover" worrying! You will do just fine. My situation wasn't nearly as much of a "sure thing" as yours. My symptoms were "atypical", and the "fix" rate is much lower than with typical cases like yours.

Hey, another day to gorge yourself on he fun foods that won't be available for a few weeks/months after your surgery. Have you checked out the post-Nissen food resources?
www.preopguide.com/PostFundoDiet.html

http://www.upmc.com/patients-visitors/education/nutrition/Pages/diet-after-nissen-fundoplication-surgery.aspx

http://www.nissenfundoplication.com/nissen-fundoplication-diet

https://healthonline.washington.edu/document/health_online/pdf/Esophageal_Diet_After_Surgery_3_11.pdf


Here's another one that is really good, but I can't get it to create a "clickable/live" link. Just copy and paste it into your web browser:

www.harbinclinic.com/pdfs/GeneralSurgery/Lap%20Nissen%20Post-Op%20Instructions%20Brock%20Mayfield%20Scott.pdf
I will say this about the information in some of these...each surgeon is different, and requires a different eating protocol. Mine was very easy. I was on liquids in the hospital, soft foods the first six days, and after my first visit with the surgeon, he set me free to eat "anything that can be chewed to a liquid/creamy consistency." He did warn me against untoasted bread, sandwiches, and steak. (BTW, toasted bread chews to a liquid nicely, while untoasted clumps to create a bolus that can easily get stuck.)

At that point, my own good judgment was my guide. It was trial and error. I didn't swallow anything that didn't follow that rule. (It's helpful to have a paper napkin handy for those foods that just don't chew completely when you give them a try.) My mouth/teeth became my blender. Small bites and chew, chew, chew, worked just fine for me.

That said, the lists of foods are very helpful as a guide for what will work. Because I wasn't forced onto a liquid diet for weeks, my recovery was much more enjoyable! I think chewing is the best part of eating, anyway!

Enjoy your extra day pre-op!
BTW...do you live "Down Under"? Just wondering...Kangaroo, and all!
Happy day!
Denise

GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
Allergy/Asthma

"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”

“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”

“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”
Eckhart Tolle

Post Edited (dencha) : 12/11/2013 7:53:42 AM (GMT-7)


BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/11/2013 9:52 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks so much once again, Denise! Really helpful links and tips.

... and you're making my journey "easier". You're such a blessing!

Hopefully too that I'll get lucky and soft foods will be allowed after I get released from hospital.

Hospital has already called me and got told to be there by 9AM, where the procedure is likely to start around 10:30AM.

Anxious moments abound! :-)


Yup, you got it right.

I live in Sydney and my real name is Joey [term down here for a baby kangaroo]. :-)


One more sleep!! :-)

opnwhl4
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 12/12/2013 4:35 AM (GMT -6)   
Joey

Good luck today! We will be waiting to welcome you to the Wrapped Club!

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

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

BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/12/2013 8:11 AM (GMT -6)   
Many thanks, Bill!

Fasting starts now and off to bed.

Need to report in hospital at 9AM, which is just a 3-minute drive from our place.

Procedure likely to start in the 10:00 - 10:30AM mark.

Let there be light! :-)

jamosca
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2013
Total Posts : 162
   Posted 12/13/2013 6:05 AM (GMT -6)   
Good luck Joey , hope things go well...

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 12/13/2013 8:30 AM (GMT -6)   
hi Joey,
Thinking of you today!! Good luck! We'll be here to welcome you into the Wrapped Club when you feel well enough to post again. You've got lots of cheerleaders here at HW!
yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah
Best wishes,
Denise
:
GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
Allergy/Asthma

"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”

“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”

“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”
Eckhart Tolle

lajenner
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 349
   Posted 12/13/2013 9:06 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Joey - we'll be here for you when you are ready!
Your worry was quite normal, but this forum is truly a gift for us.
Laurie
Nissen Fundolplication Sept. 10, 2013

Diaas2
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2013
Total Posts : 256
   Posted 12/13/2013 9:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Good luck! It really isn't as bad as what you would imagine. I was doing exactly the same thing as you just before my surgery. Feel free to ask any questions that you may have. I'm glad to help. If you create your own journal, we could probably help you even more.

You can use my journal if it helps you put things into perspective.

http://www.healingwell.com/community/default.aspx?f=45&m=2888732

Post Edited (Diaas2) : 12/13/2013 7:32:01 AM (GMT-7)


BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/13/2013 6:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Many Thanks, guys!

Am I an official member of the Wrapped Club now? :-)

Just had a chat with the surgeon and he said that it all went well yesterday. He did find and fix the hernia as well, so 2 fixes in one go.

Throat was quite sore when I woke up and it's still irritating. But no big matter.

When I was taken to my room, I was given a food tray, which had food and an apple drink that I thought were ok to take. Sipped the apple juice and no problem whatsoever. Finished the lot. Ate a tiny bit of the jello and broth as well, when the nurse walked in and said that I shouldn't be taking any except for some mini ice cubes that I could chew and will serve as my drink. Whooppps!

Mentioned that to the surgeon as well and he didn't look very pleased with that booboo in the procedure. He told his assistant to take note of that straight away. Audit! :-)

Coughing a bit, which is not nice but surgeon said should eventually go away.

Oh yeah, that left shoulder pain, as expected.

Last night was about adjusting. Haven't slept flat for so long that it might take a while to get used to it. Coughing pretty much kept me half-asleep most of the time, but I think I got 2 hrs of straight sleep when I was given a drip with Panadol (paracetamol) in it, to go with the morphine.

Today, they'll start me with some fluid intake, which I'll have to strictly do to for a couple of weeks. Plenty of thin soups and protein shakes for the next 2 weeks!

I should be able to go home tomorrow. Looking forward to it.

Again, many thanks guys for the warm welcome and fantastic advices and guidance. They have definitely helped a lot to date and will continue to do so in my recovery.


>joey

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 12/13/2013 11:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Joey,
Welcome to the yeah yeah yeahWrapped Club! yeah yeah yeah Glad to hear your surgery went well and you're on the road to recovery! If you get up and walk as much as you can, it will help with the shoulder pain. A night nurse at the hospital suggested I get up and walk whenever I went to the bathroom. I was hiking the halls, dragging my IV along behind! I found that the more I walked, the less shoulder pain I had, and visa versa.
Happy healing!
Denise

GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
Allergy/Asthma

"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”

“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”

“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”
Eckhart Tolle

opnwhl4
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 12/15/2013 5:17 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to the Wrapped Club!

Now rest up and be patient with your recovery. Slow and steady!

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

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

BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/15/2013 5:37 AM (GMT -6)   
Day 2 post-op. Home sweet home.

But it's been a struggle.

Wrap very sore.

Started with some liquids yesterday - clear soup and apple juice. Felt like my throat reacted badly. It feels swollen right now. Surgeon said it's due to the tube they used during the op and should go away eventually.

This clear fluid diet is going to be a major struggle. Clear soup and clear juices for at least a week. I feel weak already. Cheating a bit as I'm taking 2 cups of thin protein shake during the day, hoping that'll help me not lose too much weight. Actually, first time I had it this morning, made me cough straight away. Ouch!

Doc said clear liquid diet for 2 weeks, but not sure if I'll last that long. After a week, might start with creamy soup and yoghurt.

But who said it'll be easy? I just have to remind myself: short term pain, long term gain.

gunner4565
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2013
Total Posts : 97
   Posted 12/18/2013 6:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Please follow you doctors advice. You will lose some weight, but it seems to be easy to gain it back starting about week 3 ;).

Gunner
Fifty years with GERD

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 12/18/2013 10:12 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Joey,
Hang in there! You're in the most difficult part of your recovery. It will get better...promise! Even though you only have little slits on the outside, your insides have been though a major trauma, and it's totally normal to have discomfort and pain.

I'm sure your surgeon has you on liquids during the first two weeks because he wants to avoid problems. During that time your wrap will become increasingly more swollen, so don't be surprised if your swallowing gets worse before it gets better.

Once the swelling subsides, you'll begin to make improvements.
Hang in there!
Denise

GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
Allergy/Asthma

"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”

“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”

“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”
Eckhart Tolle

BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/19/2013 3:00 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, Denise and Gunner.

Not too sure if I have good or bad news. Or both.

At 3 days post-op, woke up in the middle of the night with a major heartburn. Felt like acid kept creeping up my esophagus. That's the bad news. Not good at all.

At 4 days post-op, I called the surgeon and asked if I could add at least some oatmeal to my diet, as I was really struggling. He said yes and porridge too, providing I make them very runny. That's the good news.

At 6 days post-op now, I'm all good during the day. Just the shoulder pain that kicks in on a regular basis - but bearable. Wrap pain is very minimal, if any. I'm working from home this week so time flies now. By 5PM, I'd go for a walk as my daily exercise (and sun for Vit D -- summer down under now so sun's up till 7:30PM, at least). I take liquid vitamin too.

But my biggest worries are a) the heartburns at night while asleep -- although it's subsided, surprised that it's happening at all; b) swallowing never been an issue, even when drinking, and am burping too -- does this mean my wrap is loose or has loosened somehow? -- which could be causing the heartburns too?

I have an appt with the surgeon this coming Monday, day 10 post-op, on my way to work. Will discuss all of the above with him and hope to hear some good news.

Thanks again, guys!

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 12/19/2013 9:51 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Joey,
You're at the roughest part of recovery, and pain is a normal result. Your "heartburn" at Day 3, was most certainly just surgical pain that mimicked heartburn. The esophagus is a "dumb organ" and it interprets all pain as reflux...it doesn't differentiate at all.

I'm glad you're able to add some heartier food to your diet. I can tell you this. My surgeon put me on soft foods immediately upon returning from the hospital. Honestly, unless you can't manage them once tried, if you take small bites and only swallow what chews to a liquid, what difference is it what you eat?

It's those who don't use common sense and aren't compliant with the chew, chew, chew, to a liquid (your mouth is your blender) and don't swallow anything that doesn't chew to liquid, who have trouble. Listen to your body and follow its lead. I used my own common sense and made decisions dependent upon how my esophagus/wrap were feeling.

At Day 5 or so, any swallowing you do will cause discomfort, so don't think that there's something wrong. Look over my early recovery journal again. I describe many times when swallowing ANYTHING--even my own saliva--was very painful. www.healingwell.com/community/default.aspx?f=45&m=2183443

There's no easy way--no shortcut--for getting through these next two or three weeks. You've had major surgery, and you're going to have pain and discomfort when swallowing. Just listen to your body and go with the flow. Tiny meals throughout the day is the best.

Be sure to avoid iced drinks, as well as carbonation and straws. Iced drinks can cause painful spasms, and carbonated drinks and straws introduce unnecessary air into your stomach.

Some people just don't have difficulty or pain swallowing even during recovery. Like you, they always worry that their wrap isn't working. That isn't the case. Everyone's recovery is unique, even though they tend to share certain universal characteristics.

If you can surrender to your recovery and follow its lead, you'll do fine. It is what it is. It'll get better with time, but you've got to make it through this challenging part, one day--sometimes one hour or one minute--at a time. You'll get there!

Try sleeping in an elevated position. I found it more comfortable during recovery. Take those pain pills at night, as that's when you'll notice things more.

We're here for you to cheer you on! yeah yeah yeah
Happy healing,
Denise

GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
Allergy/Asthma

"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”

“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”

“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”
Eckhart Tolle

Post Edited (dencha) : 12/19/2013 7:58:34 AM (GMT-7)


BabyKangaroo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 12/19/2013 11:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks once again, Denise.

This forum has definitely been of tremendous help. So lucky I found it.

Day 7 post-op and I had a good sleep last night.

I still use my wedge pillow, which has been my sleeping buddy for more than a year now. But from time to time, I'd [unconsciously] slide down from it and find myself in a supine position. ..... which is what happened last night and, to my surprise, no issue! Very happy indeed!

You are absolutely right. Surrender to my recovery and follow its lead, I must.
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