Thursday, April 15, 2010

And the diagnosis is...

Belly Butt is trying to burst free!  (I just like the alliteration). 

I was very excited that I was getting 2 surgeries for the price of one:  gastric bypass and an umbilical hernia repair (I didn't even know I had a hernia until the surgeon said that he would fix it "while he was in there").   Well, the repair didn't take, and so my pain issues have all been traced back to the hernia, uh, re-heriating (?). 

So, like the story of my life, it's good news/bad news.  Good news:  Pouchie is fine and there is no infection.  Bad news:  the Belly Butt will need another surgery to fix it.  Could be worse, right?  It's a simple out-patient surgery and I should be home by evening, with just a couple days off work, thank goodness.

But I did have a fun trip to the ER last night to get the CAT scan (which, strangely enough, my own cat was not able to perform for me).  The admission nurse ended up being a friend of mine, so it was nice to see a familiar face.  He also gave me good advice..."build up your muscles to be successful with your surgery."  However, it looks like weight lifting will be on hold for a little while.  So my admission went well, the scan went well, and then there was the waiting.  And the multiple teams of Doogie Housers that stopped by on occasion to prod at my belly and nod their heads at one another.  Seriously, I think I have underwear that is older than these people (TMI?).

Finally the grown-up surgeon came and told me it was an umbilical hernia, but that I wasn't in danger and that I could go home as long as I followed up the next day to schedule surgery.  Hot damn!  She said that they would do my discharge paperwork and bring it in in a few minutes.  So I patiently waited.  Um, sort of.

(Now is a good time to explain that I am a polite, rule-following kind of girl.  If they tell me to wait behind the line, I will wait behind the line.  I might be right up on it, or let a toe cross, but I will stay behind the line.  That is, except when I haven't eaten in 24 hours.  Then I am a raving bitch, apparently.)

An hour later, I realize that I'm very thirsty, hungry, and still in a little pain.  In short, the recipe for disaster.  I finally went up, opened the door to my room and told the first person who passed wearing scrubs, "Either you take this damn IV out, or I will.  My surgeon released me, I haven't eaten in 24 hours, and I'm going home--with or without paperwork."  (I kinda kick ass, right?)  Her eyes went really wide and she told me that the surgeon hadn't released me in their computer and that she didn't know.  I might have responded with something like, "Well, now you do," and she scampered off to get the required stuff.  I went back in my little room for another 20 minutes and then figured, screw it, what are they going to do?  Call the principal?  Tell me I'm a bad patient?  Report me to my mother (OK, that one I'm a little worried about, but the others sounded ridiculous.).

So I pulled out my own IV, dropped it in one of those ugly little kidney-shaped dishes, got dressed, grabbed my shit, and opened the door.  I found the first doctor and told him I was leaving now.  Lo and behold, the paperwork materialized in front of my eyes and I signed my name and took off for home.  8 hours after getting there.

Now I know they were just doing their job, and that a little hernia is on the bottom of the priority list, but I was pretty proud of myself for standing up and taking care of business.  I don't know that I would have done that before losing weight, but I'm finding that I am the only one who has a truly vested interested in my wellness.  Nurses and doctors do their jobs, and god bless them for it, but if it all goes wrong they go home at the end of the day knowing that they do the best they can.  I'm the one who goes home with a new hernia, peripheral neuropathy, or perhaps doesn't go home at all.

And God help them if they have to call my mother on me.

1 comment:

  1. You definitely kick ass! lol. It's not your fault that after all these years of having hospitals, they haven't gotten organized yet. There is NO reason for anyone to have to wait over an hour after being released! Good for you for standing up to them! Half the time they are just standing around flapping there jaws anyway!
    Imagine how much longer you might have waited if you didn't say anything!

    (when i was 16 in the ER with a fever of 104, they stuck me in a room and forgot about me. When I finally made someone go get someone for me, the nurse took my temp and said "Oh my God" they didn't tell me how high it had gotten... but I was in bad shape, delirious I would say. Not the first time i was forgotten be doctors... I always did have crappy insurance which may be part of it)

    Glad to see it will be taken care of and not something really bad!