Worse than I expected

Yesterday, I had a total hysterectomy. The plan was to go in, take the uterus and tubes, and excise any endometrial tissue. It should have taken about two hours.

The best laid plans are put aside when you have an amazing surgeon who finds a lot more stuff wrong and actually works to fix it. My two hour surgery turned into a six hour surgery.

I previously had a GJ tube. Because of this, there was scar tissue. However, rather than normal scar tissue, my surgeon found adhesions on my stomach that were pulling it right and stretching it out on the abdominal wall. No wonder my stomach has hurt so much. God bless my surgeon because she fixed it. She also fixed my feeding tube scar.

Next, apparently my liver hemangiomas have grown significantly in size and are now cavernous. They are so large that she had to call in a surgical fellow to determine what to do. For now, we leave them alone. I’ll be speaking with Vanderbilt GI about doing a new MRI on those guys.

She also had to detach my uterus from my bladder. I’ve had significant bladder issues and this seems to be why. After, a cystoscopy of the bladder was done. Thankfully there’s no interstitial cystitis but my bladder is a wreck currently.

There was significant endometrial tissue behind my uterus into my intestines. This was excised. The uterus was removed. I had a TAP block done.

I have six heart shaped gauze on the six incisions across my abdomen. My surgeon is such a wonderful lady.

Unfortunately, upon waking, I was in severe pain. I have never been in this much pain after surgery. I screamed and cried. My bladder was irritated and I constantly felt the urge to urinate. However, pushing to urinate hurt so much that I almost passed out and I threw up numerous times. We just could not get ahead of the pain.

My awesome surgeon had staff bolusing morphine and dilaudid and finally had me hooked up to a morphine PCA pump along with scheduled oral morphine. I was grateful to finally have relief by about midnight. The time up until that is a blur of trying to get on top of the pain.

Today, I am still in a good bit of pain. I’m getting ready to go home this afternoon so the PCA pump has been discontinued. I can feel the pain starting to get out in front of the medication. I am worried I won’t be able to catch up and get ahead of it.

I definitely did not expect the intense pain I’ve had with this surgery. Because so many extra things were done there was a lot more to recover from. And the TAP block only partially worked thanks to my hEDS. So that’s unfortunate.

However, my surgeon is very optimistic that this surgery and the extra procedures she did are going to really help the chronic pain I have. Hopefully I’ll even be able to reduce the amount of medication that I take regularly.

For now, I’m just going to focus on getting through today without screaming.