date 15-Aug-2007 14:46
subject [Flash Duck 2007] Back from Hospital
As the PRB will attest, I am in better nick (knick?) now than I was only a day or two ago!
I thought that I would, for once, not over pack for a quickie in-and-out day surgery; so no watch, one (small) book and not much else. At the last minute I threw in a small AM/FM radio, earphones and my iPod shuffle for the waiting time.
I arrived at the appointed time of midday, not having eaten since the morning before, or even before that. I had been hoping to get up at 6am to have a coffee and water before my nil-by-mouth curfew, but after a night sweaty night and a return to cold zero degree mornings, I stayed in bed too long.
Shown to a shared room on the surgical ward, Bob and I said our goodbyes and the waiting started.
And the waiting continued.
The staffing shortages become more acute each time I go to hospital, having accrued my frequent patient points over the last decade or so. I know the rub, although have (relatively) less experience in surgical procedures. With little fanfare someone eventually came in, whose lack of knowledge of spelling and my answers to the questions made me feel that she must be a nurses aide, and did not overly inspire confidence. She brought in a betadine scrub for me to prepare my knee. A gown was left with no instructions. It was assumed that I had shaved down my knee (no mention had been made of this earlier - it would have been useful), and prior experience led to me to ensure that I had no nail polish, jewellery etc on.
Imagining that the time would be drawing near, I put on the not so attractive white gown and threw on a jacket (OK, it's a cardigan, but with a zip) in an attempt to keep warm. If I sat right next to the window, I could almost get a scratchy reception of Radio National, but it was poor. My nose started to run, and on checking the drawers of the bedside cabinet, usually a receptacle of tissues, pens, phone books and a Gideon bible, I found only empty space. Cautiously crab walking to the nurses station so as to limit the exposure of my bare behind, I made a couple of trips to grab some tissues from the desk.
Without warning, a single wardsman arrived, so I reluctantly removed my warm top and jumped into the bed. I felt sorry for the wardsman pushing me on his own to the theatre. Into the recovery area for another, long, boring wait. Eventually a nurse came to ask all the usual questions again, and she attempted to bail me out with some magazines. Those on offer were however, not so easy to read - and I'm not even blaming my lack of glasses or the by-now pounding dehydration headache.
There were four magazines on offer; the Women's Weekly, Madison, Marie Claire, and Outback. I thought that Outback would be the most duck friendly, however, apart from one small half page article on an off road cycle, it was just Oh so country music and virtually unreadable.
Onto Marie Claire which I just couldn't find anything plausible within. Madison was marginally better (?) and then I opened the Weekly much to my chagrin. The anaesthetist popped in and my rather complicated medical history was discussed. Due to my allergy to sulphur drugs, it was discussed that if following the arthroscope it was confirmed that I required a reconstruction, then I would probably have to have a nerve block in the femoral nerve in the inguinal fold. He explained the possible complications, and its effects.
I still didn't know what procedure was being done.
After another long delay I was wheeled into the ante room adjacent to the operating theatre, where I had my cannula inserted, a large arrow drawn on my left leg to indicate which was the correct knee. electrodes were placed on my chest. More confirmation of name, date of birth and serial number. More waiting.
Finally, just after 4pm I was given a magic jab into the IV and wheeled into the OR.
The next thing I know I was in the Recovery room, feeling pretty good, although shaking in a shivering kind of way, uncontrollably. Back on the ward, I found out that I had had the full monty, and the nurse 'thought' that I would probably be in overnight, as it was written up that my dressings were to be changed in the morning.
No confirmation though, so more waiting.
Eventually the surgeon came around, scrubbed after his session in theatre. Instructions not on any circumstances to get out of bed on my own, as I had the nerve block and besides being numb, the muscles would be paralysed and give way beneath me.
Now resigned to an unprepared night in the hospital, I was stuck in my revealing hospital gown for the duration. Dehydrated, I still had my drip in, but was parched. I had to ask for a jug of iced water which was finished off quickly. Time for the SBS news, I found that the tv volume required earphones listen (not supplied). Luckily I did have my pair with me, even though they were a bit too short.
I had finished my book, so started to read my chart and was able to find out what was done.
Posted By Carolyne to Flash Duck 2007 at 8/15/2007 12:43:00 PMFindings
Medial Meniscal tear:extensive bucket handle non repairable lesion noted > resected.
LM (lateral meniscus) OK
Medial compartment dja grade 2A
ACL ruptured from femur
EUA left knee
Grade 2 Lachmans & minor pivot
Arthroscopy left knee
Medial meniscectomy as not repairable
ACL excised and reconstruction hamstring 8mm
Fixation:transfix x 50mm / staple and delta screw: 28*8mmSecure
Full rom (range of movement)
Closure in layersProsthetics
Round delta tapered bio interference screw 8mm x 28mm
Transfix implant 3x50mm
12mm x 23mm Fixation style with spikes