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2 More Days.... Then It's off For Surgery

so over itsso over it Posts: 51
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:26 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Well guys 48 hrs from now I will be in recovery after having a Laminectomy and Posterior Fusion for L4/L5. Yesterday my nerves really got the best of me :SS so my PCP called in Xanax to keep me calm. I was doing really well, and then it hit me without warning...I had a really bad anxiety attack but was able to calm down before it got too bad. Yesterday was also my last day of work. I am an Administrative Assistant in a call center, supporting 73 people and right now it's a "Germ-Fest". I just got over a sinus infection and then my chest started getting tight but I really think it's the anxiety but I am on regular Mucinex just in case to keep my chest clear. I am really excited about the surgery but not looking forward to the recovery :''( . My husband will be there the first week and then I have my kids to help me out. I ordered a new bed for healing purposes which was delivered while I was typing this blog. Well, please keep me in your thoughts...I am hoping for an uneventful recovery after the 1st two weeks =)) . I do have on question....

How bad do you feel when you first wake up from anethesia? I had a hysterectomy in 2001 and my doctor did a spinal block with twighlight sleep so I was numb from the waist down when I woke up. I really need to get mentally prepared for this.
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Comments

  • I understand your anxiety. Just remember you are on the path to recovery. >:D<
    As far as anesthesia goes, I tend to vomit. :& Gross, but true. :D Other than that, I just feel sleepy. I enjoy being in that sort of "in and out" phase, because the pain is less acute.
    If you think you might get sick, ask for an anti nausea med. They should be able to give it to you.
    Again, good luck, and keep us posted on your recovery.

    Caity
  • I mean it from the bottom of my heart! I wish you a speedy and hopefully less pain as soon as you recover :)

    I had no trouble once waking up from anesthesia but each person is different. I made sure to take deep breaths in and out as often as I could to remove traces of the gas from my lungs. I could smell it come from my lungs for a whole day!

    Try to relax and don't expect to be able to move all parts of your body right away. I imagined I was in a healing cocoon-because soon enough- after it wears off- you'll be expected to walk and pee and eat and give blood, etc. Enjoy your forced rest time :)

    Good luck and hope to hear from you as soon as you can muster energy to get on the computer. Think positive-I'm not one to do that all the time, but I try when it comes to my own body-those happy hormones help you heal. I'll be thinking of you tomorrow!
  • I also had a hysterectomy 2 years ago and waking up in that much pain was NOT anticipated. I think they really didn't get it when I told them I would need stronger pain meds post op because I have a tolerance.
    So, they had to call the Dr after I was awake & request stronger meds to get me down from a 10+.

    I had my PCP write a note in my pro op file that I will require stronger pain management meds...I hope they listen this time!

    Good Luck with your surgery!
  • I wish you all the best for your upcoming surgery. I've had other surgeries with anesthetic and though a little groggy usually and at one time needed a ventolin mask it went well. We're all thinking healing thoughts for your upcoming surgery. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Hey there,

    I hear you about the anxiety. The build up to the surgery can be very challenging. It was for me, at least. I would recommend, if your doc allows it, to take some valium the morning of the surgery before you even drive to the hospital. I had to be at the hospital at 5:30am. So, I woke up, drove to the hospital--that was a good 45 minutes. Went through registration, even though they had already pre-registered me, went through pre-op-prep which included shaving my stomach area (as it turns out the nurse shaved the wrong area--the incision was much lower then the stomach area). All of this fully sober. I should have taken a valium or something to calm my nerves--that part was crazy--I had to deal with all the people, the dumb jokes, etc. At one point, I'm in the gown, I'm on the stretcher, and the transport guy asks me if I want to walk up to the surgery level or be wheeled up--I don't know why, but I didn't like the idea of walking up, kissing my wife goodbye while standing...it just felt right to be on the stretcher...why would they even ask? Again, totally sober through all this non-sense.

    It wasn't until the IV was administered that I got the liquid valium and then of course they put you to sleep. I think the first thing they should do when you walk through the hospital doors is give you something to calm you--especially if they are going to subject you to all their staff comedians and such.

    I would mentally prepare that when you wake up you won't "know if it worked." I have read many stories of people who wake up and know right away that their pain is gone. I totally don't get this and I think it has something to do with pain meds--or others are just blessed. I just don't see how it is possible to wake up from this surgery and not be in serious back/leg pain considering what they do to you. So...don't be disappointed if you wake up and you are in pain. We are talking months recovery, not days or weeks.

    I would also take one last look at yourself in the mirror and make sure you are certain (or at least 80 percent certain) this surgery is for you. I cancelled my surgery a couple days before when I was once scheduled (I was scheduled for this thing 4 times before I finally went through with it), docs cancel surgeries all the time, even the morning of. It is a big surgery and there is no turning back. I've talked to docs and nurses--and they all say that these fusions are basically patient generated--if you go in and tell the doc you are in a lot of pain, and the MRI shows the pain, then they will operate-this procedure is elective unless there is impending nerve-related damage.

    It sounds like you are at peace with the surgery--but it is never too late to change your mind before they start the procedure. After going through this surgery, I believe people should be nearly disabled to warrant this procedure. Others would disagree--and I hope they are right and I am wrong. I hope that I made a great decision and am eventually going to get back to at least the pain level I used to enjoy. Not there yet.

    Chuck
  • for you wonderful comments. I think I am getting better not that I am out of the work environment. It really is giving me the opportunity to rest, and get prepared for this journey. My surgeons office called a little while ago and I thought it was to cancel :''( but the moved my time from 7:30 - 10:30. Hope I won't get another call from them.
  • The morning of my surgery is when the nerves hit. I woke up, took a shower with the wonderful pre-surgery soap, took my daughter to daycare, did the dishes, took out the garbage, kept cleaning.....my husband had to stop me. I told him that I can't relax, if i sat down I would burst into tears. He told me to relax. it will be OK. He turned on the TV and had me lay in bed. I kept looking at the clock. It seemed to take days for a half hour to pass.

    I finally got the hospital. My surgery was scheduled for 10:30. They took someone else in first because of some strange reason that I don't know so my husband and I sat in the room for another 4 hours before they finally came in to start prepping me. It was like waiting days. for 1 I was nervous, 2 I was hungry, 3 there is only so much that you can do in the pre-surgery room with a curtain and a tv. My husband was pacing and you could hear his stomach growling. He didn't want to eat in front of me so he starved with me. They finally wheeled me in. It was my surgeons assistant that wheeled me in. She was very kind and I really liked her. The second we went into the surgery room she said this woman is very nervous so lets move quick. The anethesiologist (however you spell it)stood behind me, the doctors started putting those strange leggings on and then I was out cold. I woke up in my room with my oldest son and my husband sitting in the chairs. I only remember saying is it over.

    I then woke up to visitors. in my opinion, you should never visit anyone on the day of their surgery. Wait until the next day. having everyone visit me that evening was exhausting. I just wanted to sleep. Not that I didn't appreciate all the flowers, balloons, cards, good wishes... I just wanted to sleep.
  • That really puts my mind at ease. Part of me is really calm and the other part is something I can't even put into words. I will post my story as soon as possible.
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