Hi, I decided to start a new thread with a new subject line so people can follow my recovery if they would like! My surgery was on 8/26/14. Here is my first post:
I'm new on these boards. I browsed before my surgery and these boards definitely helped prepare me for what was to come. Any one out there that just had the surgery? I am currently on a clear liquid diet, tomorrow I can advance to a full liquid diet if tolerated, then 3 days after the full liquid diet I can advance to the Nissen soft diet. So far the clear liquid diet isn't to bad because I really don't feel that hungry. Heres my story:
I have a long history of LPR to the point where it was affecting my vocal cords and voice, I constantly had to clear my throat, coughed all the time and had a hoarse/weak voice. I had PH probe studies done on and off my nexium, I had barium swallow studies done and most recently an upper endoscopy which showed that my LES wasn't functioning. I also was found to have a small hiatal hernia. For the past two months I was developing more symptoms of reflux (pain in my chest, lump in my throat, the feeling that food/pills would be stuck in my throat). My GI doc referred me to a thoracic surgeon. I am lucky to have found her because she is well known for being the best at what she does. She does the Nissen surgery, gastric bypass and lung cancer surgeries. Because of my test results she said I was a good candidate for the surgery. I figured at this point I had nothing to lose.
My surgery was this past Tues 8/26. When I woke up in recovery I had an NG tube in which I wasn't expecting (and I'm glad I didn't know about it ahead of time to be honest). I had to stay overnight in the iCU - not because anything went wrong but my surgeon has her pt's stay on that unit. I still couldn't have anything by mouth!!! I could only use those swabs - my mouth and throat were so dry and that tube so annoying. My stomach was bloated, I took the pain meds and they really helped me to get some rest. The following am I went for the Barium Swallow and everything looked good so I was clear for discharge. I had blood work which showed my potassium level was pretty low along with my magnesium levels so I had to get Potassium through my IV - I couldn't tolerate it - it burned pretty bad and to top it off iI started getting the gas pains in my shoulder and neck - that brought me to tears, I thought I was having a heart attack! Luckily the pain meds helped. Because I couldn't tolerate the IV potassium they gave me a pill which I swallowed without any problems. Went home that afternoon and continued with those horrible gas pains so went right to bed after taking more pain meds. My incision sites (5 of them) were tender as well, especially on the left side. I then tried walking around as much as I could to help with the gas pain, My surgeon also said I could take gas pills once a day which also has helped. I started with the clear liquid diet - apple juice, decaf tea, soup broth and jello. I actually haven't felt that hungry. Yesterday I felt a little better, I was still getting the gas pains but not as severe, I was still taking my pain meds and ambulated more, took a shower. All was well until last night when I started passing what I though was a lot of gas but it was diarrhea (sorry!). I got up to go the bathroom and it was explosive watery stool, my stomach was making lots of gurgling sounds. I did have a cherry itailian ice last night so I'm not sure if that was the culprit or if this is part of the healing process! I woke up one other time with the same thing. This am my pain is less, my stomach is gurgling a lot and I have had one episode of the diarrhea. What I may have done wrong is I though I would be constipated so I took two doses of miralax and a stool softener - I'm now thinking that wasn't a good idea! I would like to try and get outside today and maybe go to the grocery store, we will see though because of this bowel problem! Anyways thats my story in a nutshell! I welcome any comments and/or advice!
One Week Post Op:
Well my surgery was one week ago today! I can't believe its already been a week! I'm feeling pretty good. The last couple of days I had to get around more getting my two kids all ready for their first day of school. Today my pain is much better, I actually was able to sleep on my side last night which was fantastic! Yesterday I felt a little more discomfort in my throat, not sure why but of course my first thought it "my heartburn is back" it almost felt like a lump in my throat. I'm really thirsty and have been drinking a lot of fluids. My diet is going well, yesterday was day 3 of full liquids although last night I did make some mashed potatoes and bought a cooked chicken at the store. I took small bites of the chicken and chewed it really well and had no problems but I did get full really quick! I ate a little to much I think because the mashed potatoes were really good! I haven't had any more diarrhea thankfully but I also haven't had a BM, I may start taking some stool softeners. I was taking my pain med once a day - after being out and about most of the day I felt like I needed it but I'm going to try and go without today. I still am bloated, patiently waiting for that to subside. I have my follow up appointment tomorrow with my surgeon so I'm looking forward to that and have my questions written down. My steri strips are still on, not sure if she will remove them tomorrow or not. I'm just praying this surgery was a success. I still find myself clearing my throat and coughing ( I do however have seasonal allergies and this time of the year is my worst here in New England) so I'm praying that's all it is! My voice still really hasn't improved I feel but again I know there is lots of irritation that was done and my vocal cords need time to heal. I'm still taking my Nexium. I also have asthma (but am curious if the GERD played a roll in it). Time will tell. Well I think that's it for now! I'll post tomorrow after my follow up appointment.