Archive for February, 2011

Your gallblogger is infected…

Posted in Uncategorized on February 1, 2011 by doctorbacon

First night in the ER

Well, I think it’s time to update you on the adventure I was on last week. Ruining the ending of the story: I got my gallbladder removed. If you’re interested in reading about all the exploits, continue.

Day 1: Monday night/Tuesday morning

I’m at home playing Dead Space 2 and I start feeling a pain in my chest. I try to ignore it, but it gets worse. So around 3 am, I take myself to the ER for ulcer symptoms/pains. I was in pretty bad shape. After a few attempts with pain killers (injected variety) they moved on to the morphine. It took THREE doses of morphine before the pain began to subside. They took a chest x-ray, an EKG, and an ultrasound to see if I had stones-which came back negative. With the morphine in my system, I had to get a ride home from my pal Josh. I was let go around 8. On the way out, I started to feel the pain coming back, but thought it was just me. He took me to pick up my meds at HEB, and I rescheduled an interview I had that day for a new job.


Day 2: Tuesday night/Wed morning

I wake up around 7 pm after sleeping off the morphine and feel the pain at about a quarter of what it was the night prior. I figure I just need the acid blocker and other meds I was prescribed and had some dinner. The pain came back like it was building up speed. The more it hurt, the faster it hurt more. Without my car, I had to call Josh again for a ride to the ER. I had a feeling I knew it was gonna lead to something more, so I grabbed my phone charger.

I go through the same routine as the night before, but the nurse from then was there so she was kinda ahead of what needed to be done. The doctor I got this night decided for a CT; which led to him finding that my gallbladder was a little inflamed compared to what he saw on the scans from the night before and a CT I took last year (I guess I can let you know-I went to the ER last year too. At that time it WAS only an ulcer). He informed me he wanted to keep me for the day to monitor my stats and see if surgery was necessary.

The hospital was full, so I had to wait in the ER for about two hours before I got a room… in the OB wing. I knew I was gonna enjoy my stay. I ended up having to reschedule my interview again.

My third doctor came in and told me he was updated on everything and wanted me to have a HIDA scan. Having that done, he came to inform me a few hours later that my gallbladder was infected and needed to be taken out. We chatted about it, and of course my concern was not my well being, but if and when I would be able to do this interview. The recruiter had a deadline right around the corner.

Also, my mother wanted me to either wait for her to come, or me to DRIVE home and have the surgery there. Ugh. So many problems with that. (My sister told her, not me-I didn’t want her to know). I understand she was just being a mother, but 1. with this pain I was in no condition to drive and 2. it could be toenail surgery but just the fact that surgery was mentioned, it was life or death to her and she was freaking out. I was more worried about her safety than my own. It got to a point where my mom was going to take a bus to Dallas and then rent a car to drive to Austin. MY MOM DOES NOT DRIVE!!! I couldn’t have the surgery without her here, so I had to wait, but I couldn’t wait, because granted it wasn’t killing me, it could easily get to that point if we left it untreated. Through MUCH effort between me and my sister, we finally convinced her to stay home. I give the doctor the okay and he gets me on the schedule for the next day.

Throughout the day, they were giving me Dilantin 2 (I think) and other stuff to sleep and whatnot. Now, some of you know how much of a terribly lite sleeper I am. The results of that combined with the medicine were… interesting. While under, if I heard footsteps or any other sound from the hallway I would wake up, thinking a nurse was about to come in or maybe even a visitor (more on that in a moment), but I wouldn’t open my eyes. I was completely aware of the room I was in, that I was in a hospital, and that I was drugged up, but the dream would continue and the me in the dream wasn’t aware he was in a dream. It was like my brain was multitasking realities. They were fun dreams too, but I had a hard time remembering them. The only two I remember right now are one where I was teaching Carrie Fisher how to fence, but we were using umbrellas and one where Popeye’s had to change their name to Fun Fried American Chicken. Dream me was real upset about that one.


Now about the visitors. You guys know I don’t care much about making a big deal about stuff that happens to me (see: birthdays). But posting about this on FB wasn’t so much about me wanting attention, it was about me wanting company. Not like in a “I’m afraid I won’t make it through this procedure” kinda way; I don’t see people or get out as much as I would like, so this was an especially good excuse to see people and be a little social. I spent more of it catching up with friends than discussing my innards.

I was told to make sure to eat before midnight and was apprehensive about hospital food till my nurse gave me a menu. It’s not what it used to be, specific foods at certain times, according the menu. I could get whatever I wanted on it just as long as I ordered before they closed at 7 and ate it before midnight. I ordered a chicken breast sandwich, mac and cheese (because I LOVE mac and cheese) and I figured I would spoil myself with a rare sweet tooth craving for a slice of boston creme pie.

A word to the wise, do not let this new menu format fool you. The chicken was probably the worse chicken I had ever eaten and the mac and cheese tasted like yellow flavored card board. But the boston creme pie? OH THE BOSTON CREME PIE! It was heavenly. Oh and  the sprite I ordered was just enough to drown a hamster.

Day 3: Thursday

I have my surgery. Whatever they used to put me under was strong. Whatever they used to get me READY to be put under was strong. The guy who introduced himself to me as the assistant to the surgeon said, while they were strapping me to the surgical table, that he was going to inject with me something to get ready to go under and then the doctor/surgeon would talk me through the rest till I was under.  If that happened I don’t remember. There wasn’t even a countdown or anything. All I know is one minute I hear people getting things ready and monitors beeping away, and the next I’ve got something (gas mask thingie) shoved in my face. Whatever I was dreaming I think the doctor jargon I may have heard influenced me into having some type of sci-fi/conspiracy dream. When I woke up, I thought I was caught and they were trying to drug me (with the gas mask thingie). I put up a bit of a fight, mumbling as best I could that they were after me and I was going to get caught before I was talked down and realized/remembered I was just coming out of surgery. I got a few scratches in the process (which you can barely see some in the pic), but that was completely and humorously my own fault. I did my best to sound clear and continually mumbled my apologies to the nurse who was just trying to do their job.

"Thrrcumbintgtmi!" (They're coming to get me)

I was going to be dismissed that day, but the nurse who came to give me some vicodin did so without realizing I hadn’t eaten all day. You should NOT take it on an empty stomach, as I found out. I got up to use the restroom and btwn going back to my bed and talking to a friend who had just walked in, I became violently nauseous. Right in time for the doctor to walk in and see, so he kept me for another day.

After feeding on jello, applesauce, and crackers, I was finally given the okay to order real food for dinner. I looked at the menu and thought it out, considering what I was given the day before. With the cake being that good, they had to have bought it at a store pre-made; so what else would be like that. Chicken noodle soup. I ordered that and was on the mark. I know the taste of Campbell’s condensed chicken noodle soup anywhere. And I ordered TWO slices of heaven. I mean boston creme pie. I still want some more.

Breakfast of just cut open champions.

Day 4: Friday

I order breakfast which while it looked like tiny portions (in hindsight I think it was only because of the size of the plate), it was pretty filling and actually pretty tasty. Scrambled eggs, turkey sausage, and (pre made as I supsected) yogurt parfait. Doctor takes one last look at me and tells me to schedule a follow up with him for next week. Until then, I am unable to drive.

I get around just fine, I just have to go a little slow or I get extremely dizzy and a little nauseous at times. I’ve been sleeping in my recliner, since getting up takes some effort and I don’t want to try to do it from lying completely flat. I may try that tomorrow though, now that I’m less sore. I’m super itchy, now that my hair is growing back where they shaved it for the procedure which is pretty annoying. I should be back to normal shenanigans in about 5 more weeks.

Oh the job interview? It was today. I had rides taken care of. While I know they already really wanted me, I think I impressed them: going to an interview while still recovering from a surgery. I’m pretty sure I got it, the only ONLY reason I wouldn’t get it, is if the background paperwork doesn’t get back to them in time-which is why they almost didn’t want to reschedule me when they found out about the surgery. But then two hours later she (the recruiter) called back saying she would take that chance.

That was quite a long blog so I think…

That’s all from the pulpit today.