Second Laparoscopy: Day 2 post-op

Sunday, December 19, 2010

When I had surgery three years ago, I counted the same day of surgery as ‘Day 1’ post-op.

This time I’m counting the first 24 hours post-op as Day 1, so that means Day 1 post op began Saturday, December 18 at 10am.

I was finally released from the hospital by 2pm on Saturday the 18th, and we got me loaded into the car by 2:45pm. We got home by about 4pm because my husband drove slow where he could to try to spare me the bumps in the road, and because traffic was really bad. Once on the freeway across the Bay Bridge, it wasn’t so bad. But San Francisco and Oakland city streets are a different story. I was crying.

From December 18 to December 20, I took two Tylenol 3 every 3 hours religiously for the pain, so I was constantly loopy.

I noticed by Sunday (Day 2 post-op) that I could already yawn. I couldn’t even do this very well on Day 5 three years ago. All that “10 deep breaths every hour” stuff in the hospital really paid off this time!

I am walking earlier than last time – though I was made to shuffle to and from the bathroom in the recovery room after surgery last time, I was not ordered to walk the length of the corridor and back again before my release, and I certainly wasn’t motivated to do any walking once I got home.

I had two moments of Note to Self over the weekend: first, if you are allergic to everything like I am, always bring some of your own food with you to the hospital in case you are kept longer than you planned for.
Second, always bring your own medication with you to the hospital, and ask for your own type of meds as soon as possible after surgery, if you know in advance that the morphine derivatives that they put you on won’t work. UCSF seems to prefer Dilaudid initially, then Vicodin for pain managment, but those medications leave me with nasty side effects. The first night after surgery, I was already requesting my usual Tylenol 3. When they discharged me Saturday afternoon, they forgot to give me my last dose of Tylenol 3, despite my asking for it a few times. The day staff on 4 East leaves something to be desired.

As of Day 2 post-op, I realised there’s another important thing to remember: count your pills! Record every pill you take so you don’t overdose or short-shrift yourself!

It was on Day 2 that I got confused as to how many pills I’d taken, and so I did a manual count. Thankfully, my memory of the last 24 hours was good.

Pill counting

Pill counting

Another thing that occurred to me on Day 2 post-op was to remember to count how many hours I am awake and asleep. For the first couple of days, I was up for 1 to 2 hours, and asleep for 1 to 3 hours all day/night.

December 19, 2010, 4:20pm – great news! My bowels work! ;)
It was the thing I was fearing most, just like last time – to have a first bowel movement after surgery. I did not force this one, and it was not solid like last time. I ate solid foods and the wrong kinds of foods too soon after surgery last time. This time, I took Miralax one day after surgery, and was able to have a bowel movement two days after surgery – that’s two days sooner than I did last time!

A note about the weather: it’s hard to go walking outside of the house when it’s pouring down rain. It’s been raining since Thursday, December 16.

A note about my diet: I’m eating cream of rice cereal with mango mixed in. I’m drinking lots of smart water and lots of Trader Joe’s free-range chicken broth. I’m eating jello, almond-milk pudding, and Amy’s brand gluten-free, dairy-free freezer mac ‘n cheese. No meat other than the chicken broth.

A note about what I’m wearing – a nightgown! First time since childhood I’ve worn a nightgown. I wish I would have purchased several of these.

A nightgown is your best friend right after laparoscopy.

A nightgown is your best friend right after laparoscopy.

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