This has been a really diffcult recovery, which is why I haven’t really posted since the surgery. Today, I’m feeling well enough to sit at my desk long enough to post, though, so it’s time for an update.
The surgery was on December 17 and it went really well. It only took about 2 hours, which is fantastic. (First surgery, 6 years ago, was 7 hours and the second, 4 years ago, was 4 or 5 hours, so 2 is awesome.) The really terrific news is that the cysts really were cysts, not a return of the tumors! Dr. Holcomb talked to Scott while I was in recovery and said the biopsies came back clean, he saved the ovary, and we’re clear to do more IVF if we choose. I couldn’t have asked for a better result.
I had a hard time with the IV pain meds the next day and couldn’t keep any of the liquid diet down, but that eased up as soon as they took me off the IV and I started the percocet. Everything seemed to be going great until Thursday night, when I developed a fever. It wasn’t too high, so they gave me some Tylenol and took a urine sample to check for a UTI. That fever went away very quickly. That was a miserable night, though, because I was still on the IV pain meds and feeling so nauseous on top of being hot from the fever.
Unfortunately, that day they took the bandage off and a few hours later I looked at the incision and noticed that it was red and the skin around it was hot, which meant the incision was infected. They started me on IV antibiotics to control the infection, but the red area around the incision kept getting bigger. So on Saturday, my doctor started opening the incision to look for pus, which he unfortunately found. He had to open half the incision to clean out the infection and irrigate the wound. That sucked. Hard. That was followed with several more rounds of IV antibiotics, but I had another fever overnight that night. So on Sunday, my doctor ended up opening up the entire incision and found more infection. At this point, my nice, neat surgical incision had become a 10cm long, 5cm wide, 5cm deep wound. This wound has to heal from the inside, so they put in a wet-to-dry dressing to keep it open and prevent it from closing over and healing with an abscess.
Finally, on Monday, they set me up with a visiting nurse service for home and released me from the hospital. All told, I spent 6 days in the hospital, when I was expecting to spend 3. My doctor also ordered a wound vac, which came a few days later and has been on for 10 or 11 days, though we’ve had some problems with the nurses not setting it up right. (A topic for another post.)
As a result of the huge wound, this recovery has been the worst of the 3 surgeries. Ironic, because the surgery itself was the simplest. I’m still taking percocet for the pain, which is considerable. At this point after the previous surgeries, I was off pain meds. So healing is slow and my mobility is limited and I spend a lot of time reclined, but I’m getting a little better every day. The wound is down to 9.5cm long, 4cm wide, and 2.8cm deep, as of this morning, so it’s healing well. It looks absolutely HORRIBLE to me, but I’m assured by the nurses that it looks excellent. Beefy red is good, they tell me.
Scott’s staying home one more week to take care of me, which is really good, because I still need him. He goes back to work next Monday.
So that’s where I am. How’s your world?