Saturday, November 5, 2011

Tonsillectomy: Surgery Day/ Day 1

I know it's been a while since I have posted, but I wanted to document my journey into this thing called "Adult Tonsillectomy."

I first saw my Ear, Nose and Throat doctor 5 years ago and getting my tonsils out was recommended. At the time, I really wanted to have a family and was actively trying to get pregnant so there just wasn't any way I could have the surgery.

Fast forward 5 years, my throat issues never went away and I began getting tonsillitis more and more.  So I decided to take the plunge.

My doctor explained that adult tonsillectomy is a routine surgery but the recovery can be brutal.  She told me to expect to be out of commission for at least 2 weeks.  She knew I had two young daughters and recommended I get help taking care of them because I wouldn't be able to do regular household stuff, no picking them up, no yelling, no chasing them around, etc.

So, with the help of my mom, Gerry and I picked a date for surgery.  My mom decided to take off the first week post surgery and Gerry would take off the second.

Surgery Day: November 4th, 2011

The morning of surgery, I had to be at the hospital at 6:00 am, surgery was at 8:00am.  We got there bright and early and were excited to see that Gerry's Aunt Terri was my pre-op and post-op nurse.  She did every thing she could to take extra special care of us.  I was very nervous, especially about getting an IV, since I hadn't had anything injected into my veins since July '10 when I got a blood clot.  But the nurses were very understanding of my fears and with a little numbing medication, I had the most painless IV ever.

After the doctor came in to say hi and tell us everyone was ready, I started crying.  I was so scared of the initial pain I would feel upon waking up.  Just knowing that my throat was going to be shredded (I watched a lot of youtube videos, believe me) I knew it was going to be miserable. Luckily they gave me a nice little something in my IV to relive some anxiety.  The anesthesiologist had warned me that a lot of people wake up with extreme nausea and even vomit sometimes. Wow.  If there's ever a bad time to vomit, it's got to be right after your tonsils come out, right? So I was worried about that as well.

Gerry was awesome.  He prayed with me which was very reassuring and helped calm my fears.  He even teared up a little when I did.  His face was the last thing I saw as they wheeled me off to surgery.

I remember going into the OR, moving over to the operating table, and even talking to my doctor a little bit about the first time I came to see her.  The next thing I knew they were waking me up slowly, telling me the surgery was over.  I was kind of mad that they woke me because I was having a very nice dream about Maria and I playing on the grass.  It was very realistic.  I was sitting and she was running around me laughing.  I would see her sweet little smile and her little eyes looking through her glasses.  She was wearing a yellow shirt.

Then I tried to open my eyes, but couldn't.  I didn't realize where I was, then the recovery nurse asked if I wanted pain medicine.  I couldn't feel any pain, but I nodded my head yes.  After some time, my ears and jaws started hurting.  More like pressure when landing on an airplane.  SO I pointed to them, and she gave me some more pain meds.  Eventually, I ate a few ice chips and was able to keep my eyes open. But there was never any nausea, which I was so thankful! After laying there for about an hour, they wheeled me back to my post-op room where Gerry was there smiling, waiting for me.

The pain so far has been manageable.  Everything that I've read and everyone I've talked to says the worst is yet to come, but we'll see.  I'm taking my pain meds every 4 hours, using ice packs on my neck, drinking lots of water, eating jell-o.  I had chicken broth for dinner which tasted so good.

Right now, it hurts to talk, yawn, open my mouth wide, or when I take too big of a drink of water.  When I swallow, it feels like a medium-bad sore throat.

The scabs are already forming on the back of my throat.  They say it gets bad around days 3-5 when they start to fall off.

I was able to sleep for about 2 hours at a time the first night.  I had to lay propped up on my side.  If I tried to lay on my back, the swelling was too much and I couldn't breath out of my mouth.

My family has been incredible so far.  My mom and Gerry are taking care of me and my kids so all I really have to do is rest.

Here's to a speedy recovery!!!

1 comment:

Rebecca @ Unexplained X2 said...

Down with YouTube videos!!! It just freaks us out!

I hope you're doing better now...I'm a bit late on the uptake lately!

I cry when I'm sick or need surgery too...too bad Husband just laughs at me. I also cry when I'm hungover, but thank God that doesn't happen a lot anymore.

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