Thursday, December 08, 2011

One Hospital Visit Becomes Two

This morning started out very early.   We were to report to Saint Alphonsus by 7:15.   We were on time and the registration process was pretty painless.    Chris had received 2 phone calls over the past 2 days for pre-surgery questions and pre-registration questions, so most everything was already done.

The surgery was very quick... only 20 minutes or so.   The surgeon, Dr. Giles, came out to tell me that everything had gone well and Chris would be in the recovery room where I could be with him in about 45 more minutes.    During this period I called his mom to tell her he was doing fine.  I was also hoping to get something to eat.  The surgical wing is right next to the cafeteria.  It's almost like torture to force the poor patients who haven't eaten since midnight to smell the yummy food!  Unfortunately for me, the cafeteria's great-smelling goodies were only being served to staff and their guests for their annual holiday party.

As soon as they brought me back to see Chris, he started complaining about shoulder pain.  I thought at first maybe it was because they had to shift him around on the operating room table.   One of the nurses to whom we mentioned this said that the gas bubble from laparoscopic procedures often aggravates a nerve in the diaphragm and makes the shoulders hurt.  Isn't that weird?  You can read more about that HERE.

He had a very bad case of dry mouth.  He got some ice chips, orange Jell-O, apple juice and beef broth.  He couldn't urinate despite 2 tries, but the nurse didn't seem too concerned.  She measured 360ml of fluid in his bladder, but said they don't get concerned until it's 600ml or above.  She recommended drinking extra fluid and said that would help him.  Also, she said that Kegel exercises would be a good idea for him.  (What?  Kegels for men?!  Who knew?)  We left the hospital around 2:00 and then went to Costco to fill his pain medication.  We headed home after this and both tried to get some sleep.

Just after 6:00, Chris woke me up and said he was feeling a lot of pressure but despite additional attempts was unable to pee.  He called the number listed on the hospital discharge instructions, but nobody was there.  The surgeon's nurse on his answering service did call us back, and she recommended that we head to an ER to get him some relief.  We got dressed and headed to St. Luke's Eagle which is just shy of 2 miles from home.  There was only one other patient there (a very unhappy crying baby) so he got seen quickly.  The nurse inserted the catheter and Chris filled 2 containers with fluid (975ml!).  He felt better almost instantly!  The nurse there said that his prostate seemed to be causing the urethra not to be able to open enough, but that this catheterization should allow the urine to flow again.

We are home again and hoping he is able to void on his own tomorrow so we can avoid another trip to the doctor -- and another painful cath.

Today was supposed to be the meeting at U of Utah's transplant committee and they were scheduled to discuss and vote on Chris' application.   We didn't hear from them today, so we're hoping to have an answer tomorrow.

Upcoming scheduled doctor's visit:   Dr. Mallea in Boise at 12:40 on Wednesday, Dec. 14th.

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