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Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:06 PM

Ok, I survived another surgery

My list of major surgeries impress even the doctors and medical professionals. The latest was fusion of the L5 to S1 vertebrae. I lost over forty pounds so they could do the non-invasive version. This means I have only three pretty small incisions.

The surgery was Friday afternoon - it was scheduled for 10:30 in the morning but with various things I wasn't taken into the operating room until 3 PM. I was in my hospital room at 6:30 PM.

Saturday was great - I felt good, aced the first physical therapy session and they were going to try to discharge me that afternoon. Unfortunately (or maybe not) getting home physical therapy set up with the insurance company was slow so I stayed over Saturday night.

Sunday morning after breakfast I needed to pee and being a good patient I buzzed for assistance and sat up on the side of the bed. I began feeling nauseous and didn't want to make a mess so I took my walker and went in the bathroom. I stood over the sink, not sure if I was going to throw up or not. Then suddenly I was under the sink and the walker was on the floor with me.

I could not reach either of the emergency pull cords in the bathroom and couldn't seem to make much noise. Fortunately a CNA tech in training came in, probably in response to my original buzz. Poor thing panicked and ran out into the hall yelling, "Help, Help!" She was really shaken up the rest of the day and I kept apologizing for scaring her.

I was really gray feeling, my sight was grayed, out and apparently I was very white. When they took my blood pressure before trying to get me up it was 78/47. The second and third times were not much higher. They got me into a wheelchair and back into bed. Later they took me for a CT scan of my head - I had a bad laceration and had whacked it pretty good - I still have a good sized sore area. The CT proves yet again that I have a hard head - no damage to my skull or brain.

My blood pressure did not return to normal for hours and it is still trending low. They did check my heart - EKG, heart monitor and echo-cardiogram. With my history of aortic valve replacement, they wanted to make sure I was OK. The current theory is that with my weight loss (66 pounds since I had the valve replacement) and surgery I may not need blood pressure medicine any more. They told me to take it here at home, but with my blood pressure hovering at 105/60 I have not. I'm also not taking the opioids that were prescribed since those can also lower blood pressure.

I guess I was better off staying in the hospital Saturday night so I was there when I fell rather than at home.

Tomorrow I start home physical therapy and I hope everything goes OK. I hope the therapist will let me walk around outside - I am tired of being cooped up!

28 replies, 1756 views

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Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply Ok, I survived another surgery (Original post)
csziggy Apr 2019 OP
redwitch Apr 2019 #1
csziggy Apr 2019 #6
elleng Apr 2019 #13
redwitch Apr 2019 #22
dawg day Apr 2019 #2
csziggy Apr 2019 #7
CaliforniaPeggy Apr 2019 #3
csziggy Apr 2019 #8
elleng Apr 2019 #4
csziggy Apr 2019 #9
elleng Apr 2019 #11
csziggy Apr 2019 #12
elleng Apr 2019 #14
csziggy Apr 2019 #15
UTUSN Apr 2019 #5
csziggy Apr 2019 #10
Solly Mack Apr 2019 #16
mnhtnbb Apr 2019 #17
Leith Apr 2019 #18
CentralMass Apr 2019 #19
PoindexterOglethorpe Apr 2019 #20
Kali Apr 2019 #21
csziggy Apr 2019 #23
Phentex Apr 2019 #24
Fla Dem Apr 2019 #25
csziggy Apr 2019 #26
Fla Dem Apr 2019 #27
csziggy Apr 2019 #28

Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:10 PM

1. You poor dear!

Try not to do that again! Glad your surgery went well, every day seeing more improvement.
Feel better please, we need all of us!

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Response to redwitch (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:25 PM

6. This is the second time I've passed out after surgery

Fortunately both times I was still in the hospital.

The first time was after the valve replacement. Again I had gone to pee, with my husband's help. I finished, called him back to give me a hand. He looked at me and asked "Why are you so pale?" Next thing I knew there were five people in the bathroom - none of them my husband - and a crowd outside. My heart monitor had sent a code blue to the entire hospital!

Both incidents are considered vasovagal syncope - and I hope they are both a reaction to surgery and not an indication of something worse!

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Response to csziggy (Reply #6)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:36 PM

13. My daughter had several bouts of vasovagal syncope when she was a kid;

scared the heck out of us! Reactions to some kinds of 'stress,' as I recall. Doc said 'self-regulating,' after WE practically died from fright!

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Response to elleng (Reply #13)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 02:45 AM

22. Our youngest passed out a lot between 1 1/2 - 3 years old.

If he was angry or scared or hurt himself. It was awful! Vasovagal response to stimuli. The first time it happened he went into a grand mal seizure. Absolutely terrifying!

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:11 PM

2. Well, thank heaven for a hard head!

Glad you're home and I hope the PT goes well and you're soon out enjoying the spring.

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Response to dawg day (Reply #2)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:26 PM

7. This was not my fifth concussion - I've had four

And I worry about the cumulative effects as I get older. So I was relieved that my gray feeling was "just" low blood pressure and not another concussion!

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:19 PM

3. Omigod, my dear csziggy!

Thank goodness for your hard head indeed! I'm so relieved you're OK.

Do take care and I hope you can get outside soon.

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Response to CaliforniaPeggy (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:29 PM

8. I did go out on the front porch today but couldn't spend my time

Today my husband was getting everything organized so I can spend a few hours alone on the evenings he will be out. He's taking very good care of me - and was totally freaked with the call from the hospital about my fall.

Thank you, California Peggy.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:20 PM

4. WOW!

Be well!

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Response to elleng (Reply #4)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:30 PM

9. Thanks, elleng

I plan to heal and be great. July, we're scheduled to cruise to Britain and I have to be able to hike around by then!

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Response to csziggy (Reply #9)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:32 PM

11. YES, FIRST hike around the ship!

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Response to elleng (Reply #11)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:34 PM

12. Oh, yes, I am planning to hike all over the ship

And since it is a BIG one (Queen Elizabeth) that could take days to explore. Plus they have an onboard gym so I can train for the hills and slopes of Scotland and Wales.

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Response to csziggy (Reply #12)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:36 PM

14. WOW! Take pics of the ship for us, please!

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Response to elleng (Reply #14)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:38 PM

15. I'll probably put stuff on my blog and put a link in my sig line

Since it will be easier to upload stuff to and write commentary. The pictures I have seen of the QE are gorgeous - all Art Deco style and just lovely.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:23 PM

5. K&R for, I seldom Rec in Lounge, so...

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Response to UTUSN (Reply #5)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:30 PM

10. Thanks, UTUSN

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 10:51 PM

16. Dang. Scary. Wishing you well and a full recovery.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 11:20 PM

17. Egads!

Being hard headed does have it's advantages.

Hope you get outside tomorrow and have a beautiful spring day! Also hope your PT gets you well on the road to recovery and in shape for that fabulous trip.

Congratulations on the weight loss, too, but keep an eye on your blood pressure. No more falls!

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Apr 2, 2019, 11:30 PM

18. Oh man...



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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 12:11 AM

19. I hope that you have a speedy recovery.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 12:20 AM

20. Oh, my goodness.

I hope all is well with you.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 01:17 AM

21. a life of training with livestock leaves some of us tougher than others, LOL

glad you are on the mend!

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Response to Kali (Reply #21)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 06:41 AM

23. That's true - you gotta be tough to run a farm

The medical professionals seemed surprised that I was not more upset about fainting and the consequences. For some reason they seemed to expect me to be freaked out about it all. Too much stuff has happened to me in my life without help close by that a little fall and a bump on the noggin is not going to freak me out.

I'm feeling better, my back is mending, and the lump on my head is getting smaller, so all is goo with the world!

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 07:56 AM

24. Whew!

SO glad you are okay. Speedy recovery!

Bock bock! The chickens want you out of the coop too!

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 09:08 AM

25. First, Congrats on your weight loss! That is a monumental achievement.

Secondly, glad you're alright, have a great husband and looking forward to a trans-Atlantic cruise. That's the way to enjoy life.

I recently had my 3rd abdominal surgery, unfortunately unlike you they sliced me open. I have a 8 inch vertical scar. But I heal fast and was up and around within a few days.

All the best as you get back to your normal self.

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Response to Fla Dem (Reply #25)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 10:30 AM

26. Oh - I had abdominal surgery in Nov 2017 - that incision hurt!

On the way to getting my aortic valve replaced they found a mass on my left kidney. That kicked me up into a category of TAVR (trans arterial valve replacement) non-invasive surgery. I got the TAVR on Oct 23, 2017, then Nov 29 I have my left kidney removed and as a side thing they also fixed my umbilical hernia.

So I have a nice big vertical scar and a remodeled naval.

I was very lucky though - they found the kidney cancer before it spread - which is unusual. Generally that kind of cancer is not found until it effects some place else. As it was, it was well contained and so far they have found no other spots of cancer. No chemo, either! And an extra bonus was NOT having my chest cracked open to replace the aortic valve.

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Response to csziggy (Reply #26)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 10:55 AM

27. WOW! you've really had the "Full Service" Plan. Glad they caught the kidney cancer when they did!

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Response to Fla Dem (Reply #27)

Wed Apr 3, 2019, 11:04 AM

28. Oh yeah - I've had over a dozen operations since 2001

I take a print out of the surgery dates and types to every doctor appointment. I had a copy in the hospital room which came in handy when the hopitalist (the hospital's doctor) came in - their computer form only lists the last four operations.

I think I am working on a local record for number of operations!

This is why I planned our "trip of a lifetime" for later this year. Cruising to Britain on the Queen Elizabeth (via New Yor, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Iceland) getting off in Scotland. Driving around Northern Scotland, a side trip to the Orkneys, and into Northern England. Then a ten day tour, six days in London, back on the road to Wales, and then out to the end of Cornwall. Then we'll spend a day on the Isle of Wight, get on a Royal Caribbean ship that is relocating to the Caribbean and will take us back to Fort Lauderdale via St. Maatin, St. Thomas, Puerto Rico, and Haiti.

Over three months, a lot of stuff to see, and I hope we have a wonderful time!

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