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Surgery in 6 hours

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

I'm going in for my surgery in about 6 hours. Not sure yet what that surgery will be, but it will, unfortunately, be an open procedure. It could be a total nephrectomy, partial, or cryoablation, depending on the tumor infiltration of the renal artery. Latest images showed we might be able to get away with a cryoablation, sparing the kidney. Will find out soon!

btw, my tumor grew only 1 mm in 6 months -- gotta love these slow growing kidney cancers.

I am NOT looking forward to the recovery of an open surgery, and I do suffer from post-surgical depression. But right now, I'm feeling pretty positive.

I think I finally got work and home in order. Hmm, guess I better go pack a bag or something.

Oh yeah, one tiny little wrench thrown in the works. I'm COVERED in poison ivy! Sheeks. I've never had it this bad before, and unfortunately it is all over my arms. They're just gonna love that. Oh well, at least perhaps everyone will remember to glove up before touching me!

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

Jamie my thoughts are with you for your surgery. It always seems to be such a mixed bag of things we can have done. I hope it is the easiest one of the 3. And you have my support and thoughts let me know how you do. Keep the good word and your spirits high.
Jess

It is now about 7 am and I am think of you. I hope all is going well. and you will be back with us soon. Keep smileing and keep the good thoughts. you will soon be healed and ready to get back to normal. Just remember to do what they tell you and do all you can but dont over do. I learned the hard way.

Jess

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1559
Joined: Jan 2010

Jamie1.3cm

Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

Icemantoo

DarrylPe's picture
DarrylPe
Posts: 75
Joined: Mar 2011

Hi Jamie you should be resting by now .Hope all went well. Your in my prays and thoughts hope to hear from you soon.

Darryl

jona187's picture
jona187
Posts: 74
Joined: Apr 2011

Jamie,

Sorry I haven't been on for a while. I've been tending to my wife.

I wish you a speedy recovery and welcome your return :)

Sorry to hear you have poison ivy.

How did you catch that?

Hope all goes well!!!!!

JQ

Cafewoman53's picture
Cafewoman53
Posts: 735
Joined: Jul 2010

This is such a horrible surgery but I am glad you are done with it ! Take it slow should be your motto. I am 5 months post-op from a radical right kidney removal, and I have been feeling good for at least a month now.
Glad to hear your tumor was slow growing let us know how you are feeling but rest alot.
You are in my thoughts
Colleen

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Instead of the nephrectomy, he was able to cryoablate the tumor, sparing the kidney. And I still have good kidney function. That means he was able to separate the tumor from the renal artery. yay!

Instead of going through my side, he went through the front, but said he didn't encounter any gut issues.

Definitely man-handled the ribs. A couple were fused together, so he had to separate them, and separate the muscles from the ribs to get to the kidney. But he didn't have to permanently break off any ribs.

3 hour surgery; 5 hours in recovery because of breathing and pain issues. First night and next morning did not have pain well controlled. At that point, they used Toradal (sp?) in the IV. It's an ibuprofen product, which I'm not supposed to take, but he said it would be ok for 2 days. It was great pain control, with a dilaudid pump for break through pain.

Had no veins left, so he had to use a central line in my neck. Egads, that was horrible.

Would get up and do one thing, then have to nap for two hours afterward. You know the drill.

Pathology: Renal Cell Carcinoma (clear cell), which is the most common.

Follow up: we'll just monitor the area with ct scans every few months.

15(?) staples will come out late next week.

Moving is still the big issue. And I'm afraid to move without the velcro belt, just like my previous surgeries. Hard to lie comfortably in bed, so I spend about half the night in bed, and half the night on the couch. Hey, did you know I Love Lucy is on at 3 a.m? ; )

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

Jamie 1.3cm
i am so happy that all went well with your surgery, you are home and doing well. I know the laying down and getting up routine. Stay strong and keep good thoughts. You will do well. And no I didnt know I Love Lucy is on at 3 am. Take care of yourself.

candoredo
Jess

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1559
Joined: Jan 2010

Jamie1.3cm,

Now that the surgery is over with I want to extend to you an invitaion to the club. It sounds like your initiation was the real thing even though you still have 2 Kidneys. As I have stated before my name has nothing to do with this freezing procedure, but reflects the fact that my father and grandfather were in the retail ice business, hence the name, Icemantoo.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 267
Joined: Oct 2010

Happy to hear all is well! FYI I used a wedge to sleep for the first six weeks in bed -it worked great!

Rae

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Me too! In fact, it's a big stuffed cat that I use as a sleeping wedge. On my back with head and knees slightly lifted is most comfortable on the kidney, but that sure makes your small back hurt after a while, as it would anyone. I haven't been brave enought to try sleeping on my side yet.

Hey, yeah, iceman. I'm an iceman now, too! I was frozen, thawed, frozen, thawed.

I had 2 more questions for my follow with my doc, but I can now only remember one: What was the final size of the tumor? We know IRL it can be slightly different than what was seen in radiology. What was my other question?

I'm on oxycodone, and I'm not even going to go read all the gloom and doom on the internet about it. My pain level is signficant. But instead of taking 2 every 4 hours, I'm just taking 1 every 4 hours so that the rx lasts longer. I know I'll need it. But I'm not sure 1 is really doing me any good. Any advice?

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Thanks for the med reply in the other folder, Iceman. I think I need to remember that we don't get any brownie points for stoicism.

Each day I set goals for myself. The small chores-around-the-house goals I seem to reach fairly easily, like take a cup of water to the plants, run the dishwasher.

But today my goal was to improve my posture. I really seem to want to hunch over, but I don't want to form any adhesions that would cause me to favor that poor posture forever. So I'm trying to stand and sit up straighter, when I stand and sit up, which isn't all that often.

In any case, I didn't reach that goal. I need to take more pain meds so that I can reach goals like that.

5 days post-op, and I still sleep most of the day. Still hurts to get up and do things. Getting out of the bed is the hardest, since I live alone. But my head is pretty clear. No depression. I manage to do small things that need to be done.

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

Jamie1.3cm I am now 10 post op. I have days all I want to do is sleep and days I want to do everything. Rest as much as you need to do only what the body says you can do, dont do what I did, I over did before I was ready and spent 2 days down. standing and walking is good but dont over do too soon. make your goals attainable but if you wake up and say I want to stay in bed today do it.
I wish you the best of recovery time. I am off pain meds now. I am going back in tomorrow to have the staples removed all 40 of them. So I will probally have to have some pain meds for that but not the hydrocodone that they gave me for pain management. Take your time and do what the body says to do.

I look forward to your posts,

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

I can't imagine being off pain meds after only 10 days! Mine is a bit complicated by a huge hernia right below my incision, that is pulled down by gavity, creating more pain, but still.

I can tolerate the pain on 1 pain pill every 4 hours IF I wear my velcro support belt. Tomorrow I'm going to test if 2 pain pills would mean less time in the belt. Like I said, I can't even fathom being without pain meds at this point.

I do spend much of my time sleeping through things. I barely woke up in time to see Levi Liepheimer win the Tour de Suisse, and he's my hero!

Removing the staples doesn't hurt at all. You won't even feel it. I'm not sure what kind of tool they do it with, but I've had major staple removal 3 times, and I never even felt it.

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

One week post-op. I took myself out for a Panda Express lunch. Probably not the best idea physically, but psychologically, it felt great.

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

that sounds great I got the word that I get to drive in a week. so when that date come around I will surely be ready to go to lunch. I am happy that you are doing so well today. keep your chin up, I got told on today at the doctors office when someone ask when was I to get to drive again? the doctor looked at me and told me in a week. not before. so no more sneaky runs to town for hot fudge sundaes. Wishing you the best with your recovery..
Jess

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1559
Joined: Jan 2010

Candoredo and Jamie1.3cm,

With so much information you guys should get a webcam. Seems like old times
Without going thru this we wouldn't appreciate what weve gone thru.

Icemantoo

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

I confess: All my driving trips have been sneaky ones. Not more than a few blocks, however.

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Let's see if this site allows picture posting here, rather than the "expressions" gallery, which is kinda lame.

If it works, this is my incision, right above the hernia, which is a complication from a gut surgery 3 years ago.

Nope. Didn't work. Fudge.

My staples come out on Friday.

ejneary's picture
ejneary
Posts: 64
Joined: Mar 2010

This is the biggest challenge for me is wanting to eat comfort foods and having to watch the diet for protein and sodium. I haven't had a hot dog in over a year and a half!!! I haven't given up a good hamburger though. Just don't salt anything anymore.
There are things that simply can't be done as far as giving up foods and it sounds like Panda Express is one of those for you...

All things in moderation and mixed in with a good does of veggies and fruits, shouldn't be a problem. I am just hyper sensitive to the amount of protein that I eat each day and try to stick to under 75 grams. It is tough though being a meat eating carnivore. The challenge with any kind of Asian food is sodium. I had Chinese food last night and just know that I went over the 2-3 grams limit yesterday. Like you said though, it felt great!!!

John

DarrylPe's picture
DarrylPe
Posts: 75
Joined: Mar 2011

Good to hear from you Jamie. I had you in my nightly prays. I'm glad that your kidney function is holding up . Girl your a fighter !!!!! Missed your posting you lighting the mood in here. Take care of yourself.

darryl

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Well, I'm in a pretty bad mood right now. So, I wasn't going to post, but then I decided that it's probably better for people to see the range of experience that can be had post-op, not just the "I ran a marathon a week after surgery" people.

Here's the deal. Even after open surgery, my improvement was really fast. I improved dramatically while in the hospital, and that improvement continued the first several days at home. The two biggest improvements lately have been being able to get in and out of bed without pain, and being able to lie on my left side (right side is surgery side) for a few minutes without (much) pain.

But 2-3 days ago, that improvement suddenly stopped, and I'd say I even digressed a bit. I always hurt, even on the pain med. The pain med just brings it to a (barely) tolerable state. And that constant pain 24/7 just really wears you down emotionally. I'm just tired of hurting. I'm tired of being tied to the 4 hour pain med window.

Objectively, I know that I'm still a week or more ahead of where I was for previous major surgeries. But that doesn't mean much when I'm still hurting and frustrated with the slow-down in improvement.

So, I'm kinda sad and weepy tonight. I want to feel better. : (

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

Jamie I am sorry you are having so much pain. I know what it is like to have high pain levels. Have you talked to your doctor about it yet? Right after they took the staples out I had some pain levels that were over the top too. It seemed to me that the improvement came after some pain levels. I am hopeing that you will see a lot of improvement soon.
Just remember to rest when your body tells you to, and please do not over do. My thoughts are with you.

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Yep, the doc agreed that considerable pain at 10 days post-op is perfectly normal. He warned that I might be uncomfortable right up to 3 months. The more active I am, he said, the pain levels will rise. Or, if I don't keep ahead of the pain, it can be harder to then bring back down.

He put numbing goo on my staples and replaced them with sticky steri-strips.

He said my tumor was <2cm, but didn't get more specific than that.

We scheduled my follow up ct scan for late December, though I could have waited a year if I wanted.

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

Jamie I bet you are as happy as I was when those came out. They didnt put the goo on me to take mine out. I still have the steri strips I guess they will come off on their own. My doctor wanted me to have a ct in 3 months, but said he got it all. Today has been one of my bad days I have had some pain and discomfort most of the day. I went without the band all day yesterday and that is why I am hurting so much today. I wish you the best and hope the pain levels come down soon.
Jess

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

I didn't know you were using the band. It really can help. I stopped using mine a few days ago when it became more uncomfortable, but I may go back to it and experiment.

Yes, I got the staples out and am now sporting some yellow steri-strips. Looks like a crime scene. : ) But those staples were definitely ready to come out. They were getting ouchy and starting to grow in, etc. In the waiting room afterward, I pulled up my shirt and had a show-and-tell session. LOL.

As you guys know, I had been having a rough 3 days, and the dr appt was on that 3rd day, so he got to see me at a pretty low point, which is good. He needs to see the bad days as well as the good, imo. I got a good refill on my pain meds. I have not increased my dose, and in fact, I'll probably start tapering in the next couple of days if things continue to go as well as today.

I felt better today. The only achey time was when I had to go get a new remote for the cable, and even just 20 min in the car was NOT comfortable. My brokey ribs really did not like that ride.

Previous surgeries taught me that you can have a string of bad days, and that does not mean you won't make any more improvement. I kinda forgot that and let it get me down. I'm doing better now. I'm going to try to do some light tidying up around the house tomorrow, Sunday.

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1559
Joined: Jan 2010

Those of us RCC survivors diagnosed with small tumors are a very lucky group. Yes, we had to have the surgery. Yes, it hurt. Yes, the recovery takes longer than we want and has its ups and downs. But here we are with potentially a full recovery. If our tumors had been allowed to grow and spread many of us would not be here or we would face a more difficult journey. That is why I tell the newcomers that you can not sugar coat the surgery, but it sure beats the alternative. That is why I try to prod the newcomers to get the surgery behind them when they are scared. That is why I try and put their fear in perspective. That is why I occasionally use humor and sarcasm.

To everybody's good heath and well being,

Icemantoo

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

Icemantoo. thank you so much for your knowledge on the subject. I didnt know what to expect until I came here and began reading, I had no fears about the surgery and I have little fear on the healing times. Some heal faster than others, and some have more pain that others. I too try and let others know how I am doing and I try and use humor with it too. the more we let people know what to expect and what is going on with us may ease their fears. I am so glad that I have both of my tumors out now. and I can look forward not having to have the alternative. I thank you so much for helping to keep it in prespective.

candoredo
Jess

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

yes, you're both right. That message hits home especially when I'm on my kidney cancer support site in the UK. Because the NHS uses things like ct scans so rarely, my "survivor" friends there end up with enormous tumors that have spread everywhere. Prognosis is so grim when it's spread that far.

Well, I didn't feel well enough to do much of anything today, other than ride the couch, and I'm giving myself permission for that to be ok. I mis-timed my pain meds and went about 14 hours without one, so it's hard to play catch-up. But, the couch is fine. Nothing wrong with a "down" day, right?

On another note, I'm eating. I promise I am. But I lost about 15 pounds. That's ok, it's just weird to be eating and lose weight so fast. Four days on clear liquids before and after surgery I could understand, but I'm eating now!

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 267
Joined: Oct 2010

Jamie,

I am almost nine months post-op (Oct 8, 2010) and I just started feeling almost back to normal at eight months. I still have incision pain and nerve pain, which I wasn't expecting this late in the game, but nonetheless it is what it is. I still have tightness in my diaphram area which still makes any kind of deep breathing difficult but it's slowly improving.

I too tried to compare this to previous surgeries and discovered it's like comparing apples and oranges. It just plain and simple takes time and that amount of time is different for everyone. I had days when I felt great and would accomplish goals and then feel fatigued and sore for two days after. I was walking hunched over for about six weeks...I tried not to but it hurt to straighten up. I had no ill after affects because of it though I was told by friends I would stay in that position forever if I didn't straighten up.

I had fatigue for months, a lot of it was due to anemia from blood loss and a B12 deficiency, but a lot was due to the surgery itself. My early days home from the hospital had a set back due to catching a horrible stomach flu the day I had my staples out - I was vomiting and had diahrrea for 72 hours and lost 13 pounds of fluids. ER just sent me home. The stomach pain from the flu was made worse from the incision. It was like going through labor with no drugs (needless to say I couldn't keep any pain pills down, they presribed me a suppository but how does one manage that on themself with a foot long incision and diahrrea anyhow?).

I didn't start putting weight back on until about 8 weeks post op. I felt the same frustrations as you. It just seems like things should be moving along on our schedules and they just don't. It's taken me MONTHS to realize I have to listen to my body and stop beathing myself up for not being further along in my recovery. I spent my day in the jammies and it was bliss - nothing wrong with having a down day at all. Hang in there it will get better in it's own due time.

Rae

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Well, I had another series of bad days, just didn't feel like talking to anyone. But as someone mentioned above, I think I'm starting to see a pattern of a few bad days, and then a really good day or two. Today was a good day.

I'm down to 3 pain pills a day. I'm sleeping in the bed throughout the night now, but I do take a 2 hour nap in the morning, and another 2 hour nap in the afternoon. I try not to nap in the evening so that I can sleep better at night.

I haven't tried the abdominal binder again because, as I mentioned above, it had started to be more uncomfortable than not using it. And I was concerned that it was bothering my ginormous hernia (for an old surgery) in a serious way. I think part of my bad feelings were fear, fear of the unknown, of a possibly misbehaving hernia, which can be serious. I just had trouble dealing with that on top of the kidney surgery pain. Anyway, I should try the binder again, but I'm just scared it's shifting and squeezing the hernia too much.

Rae, you mentioned a pain in your diaphram. Can you tell me more about that? I've developed a weird pain, 5 or so inches above my belly button, right at the bottom of my chest/rib cage. Is it "referred pain" from the surgery, which is further to the side? Is it just my achey ribs deciding to ache there for awhile? Is it a new problem, like pancreas or gall bladder? I hate not knowing. It's as painful as the surgery site pain.

Anyway, I'm trying not to do too much anymore, and so far, I seem to be more comfortable.

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 267
Joined: Oct 2010

I took a LOT of naps for weeks - naps are good! The only time they offered a binder for me to wear was when I was in the hospital. I wore it a couple hours and found I felt more comfortable without one - but I am sure that is different for everyone.

I have an incision right under my sternum and below my rib cage like a hook that then goes down my left side (my tumor was pushing against my pancreas and spleen and they accidentally cut off the tail of my pancreas and nicked my spleen during surgery) which is why I have pain and tightness there, but I think referred pain is also common.

Every time I ate a couple of bites of food my stomach hurt terribly. Even now if I laugh or cough it still hurts under my rib cage. It could very well be referred pain and/or ribcage pain and just plain ole incision pain you are feeling. I've had gallbladder attacks and had it removed and it's a pain you don't forget (it felt like someone putting their fist in my front and coming out my back, then twisting a bit just for fun).

I am glad to hear you are taking it easy - it truly is good to rest and it's ok to allow yourself time to heal (physically, emotionally and mentally). It is an ordeal to go through.

Rest well,
Rae

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

I'm trying to drop my percocets to 2 a day (1 every 12 hours), but after about the 8th hour, I'm just too uncomfortable!

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

I'm down to 1 pain pill a day. I'm still not able to sleep on my side without paying for it with much more discomfort that day. The swelling on that side of my body is clear. When I had read about people mentioning the swelling, I didn't know what they were talking about, but I do now! That whole side of my body is swollen, making me asymetrical if I look at my naked self. I hope that goes down, eventually.

Some nights I sleep with the heating pad and that helps.

I think the pain med is giving me horrible dry eyes and dry mouth. When I wake up in the morning, sometimes my eye lids feel sealed shut!

ejneary's picture
ejneary
Posts: 64
Joined: Mar 2010

It takes a good long while to get feeling OK after being sliced open. After a year and a half, I am still feeling the affects of the surgery in my side. You will have referred pain for some time as the wound heals internally and the areas of tissue at the ends of the wound will be painful as all of the area that is numb from where they went through the nerves will be placing their pain signals where you can feel it.

The swelling will take a while too but slowly, you will feel better and better. I got to the point where I could go most of the day without pain meds and then by 4 or 5, I needed some relief. I was working full time after 4 weeks so some afternoons at work were a little interesting. I was on tylenol and hydromorphone for about a month after that. They stopped supplying me with it after about 8 weeks and the pain was manageable but still very much there. Plain tylenol does nothing for me so... I had shooting pains every now and then once they stopped allowing me to use the pain meds.

The pain meds do have their set of side effects so coming off of them sooner is a better thing all around even though you will have some level of discomfort.

Sleeping on my back for so long was difficult since I am a side sleeper. It was really good to finally be able to sleep on my side again after about a month and a half. It takes a good long while to get "Back to normal" but in reality, it is better to describe as the new "Normal" because it isn't really the same as it used to be, just different.

Good luck in your journey. Sounds like to you getting there...

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Thanks for the post, ej. It reminds me that my recovery is going normally. I need not to pressure myself to feel better than I actually do.

I'm back at work as well all last week, my 5th week post op. I'm just doing easy desk work, but by the end of the day, I'm hunched over and feel every bump on the ride home.

Asking me to sleep on my back is like asking someone to sleep while standing up: I just don't get good quality sleep on my back. I'm definitely a side-sleeper too. Some nights I can sleep on my non-surgical side for just a few minutes. How long was it before you could sleep on your surgical side, do you remember?

I am now down to 1 pain pill a day. And sometimes I do sneak in an Advil if I'm really hurting, though I know I'm not supposed to do that. Because the oxycodone already has Tylenol in it, I dont take that yet. But I will when I've finished this rx. The shooting pain definitely lets me know when I've done something I shouldnt have tried to do.

Thanks again. I need you to keep my expectations based in reality.

ejneary's picture
ejneary
Posts: 64
Joined: Mar 2010

how long it took before I could sleep on my side again but it took a good long while. Sleeping on the wound is terrible and sleeping on the other side stretches the wound. Lose-Lose situation. I simply had to roll from my back from time to time to feel like I was sleeping but the pain made it unbearable after a while. That time lasted lnger and longer as the weeks went by. I am pretty sure that I was able to sleep on my side all night after about two months.

I will tell you that the bed makes a difference though... I have a feather bed on top of my mattress along with a foam topper too. I sink into my bed and the feather bed conforms to my body better than a regular mattress. I used to have back problems and woke up in pain every morning. Now, I do not. The feather bed did help to alleviate pain from the wound as it cushioned it.

I actually did better on the Oxycodone/Tylenol than on the hydromorphone as far as sleeping was concerned. It allowed me to get to sleep faster with less pain as I remember.

Steer clear of that advil. Don't even tempt yourself with it. I have pain now after working outside and that Motrin bottle calls to me but I work through the pain. Don't want to treat "Lefty" poorly.

Take care and you will be sleeping well again soon.

John

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 267
Joined: Oct 2010

Jamie,

It was seven weeks before I was able to start sleeping on my side, but even then it was only for an hour or two. I could make it through the day without prescription pain pills at that point but I unknowingly took ibuprofen during the day. My urologist never mentioned I shouldn't take them. I found out from reading this board a few months later.

I took Vicodin at night just so I could sleep. I had restless legs and sleeping on my back after week five became absolute sheer torture so sleeping was most difficult. The vicodin would knock me out so I could get a few hours sleep. I think by week nine I could comfortably sleep on my incision side but found sleeping on my right side (non incision) was more uncomfortable. I got a refill on Vicodin at my 12 week check up so I know I was still taking them at night after that.

HOnestly it's been 9 months and I still have incision pain, especially when I try to sit up while laying on the couch. I also have a lot of nerve pain - some days it's worse than others. One day I notice nothing, the next even my shirt brushing against the top incision site is painful. Deep breaths, coughing, sneezing, burping, hiccups have all become very painful again with my new left pain side - which my GP thinks is from the new tumor so I feel like I have gone backwards in the recovery process.

It's so different for everyone. All I know is you feel like you should be doing better but I have learned it's a slow and long process, different for everyone and you really have to listen to your body. This is the only place I can talk about my pains and frustrations without feeling like a hypochondriac. Others that have not gone through this probably think I am whining so I keep it mostly to myself.

Hang in there, it will keep getting better.

Rae

niprut
Posts: 23
Joined: Jul 2011

Hi,

I remember it was a few weeks before I could lay on either side and think it seemed to hurt more lying on the non-cut side. I did cut out all pain relief pretty quickly because pain relief seemed to cause other problems.

12 months on and I still have trouble every now and then on either side, and need to cuddle in to my doona for support, which helps a lot.

It used to me that couldn't sleep because of hubby snoring, now I find it is me waking myself up snoring because I am asleep on my back all the time. :-)

take care and take it gently

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

Yes, I too wake up with a horribly sore throat from snoring caused by "sleeping" on my back.

Today the pain was really more than it should have been. I'm tempted to schedule an appt with one of my docs for a follow up, ultra sound or ct scan or something, to be sure everything is as it should be.

They did their big slice RIGHT above a very complicated hernia, so I'm concerned about that.

candoredo
Posts: 44
Joined: May 2011

Well I know the waking yourself up snoring. I am comfortable on my right side (surgery Left side) and I can lay on it for a while. I am scheduled for a ct in september and then go back to the doctor in October. I dont have the complications you have with the hernia so I cant say. but I have seen the surgeon now 2x since the surgery. If you are uncomfortable I would call them and see if you need to be seen. Healing demands a good mental attitude and no worries, so put your mind at ease and go see one of them. Good luck and stay possitive.

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

You're right. I did go ahead and schedule an appt for Monday. A new swelling and new horrible rib pain have put me back on the pain meds -- a half pill a day, though a whole one would be better. I'm just trying to get off them, and that's not proving to be easy.

rae-rae: Your pain and sleeping experience sounds a lot like mine. Even this far out, I just can't get comfortable in bed for very long.

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

I was off on my post-op weeks count. Duh. I'm only 6 weeks post-op today. And this past weekend, I weaned off the pain pills. In fact, last night, I just took 2 Tylenol PM, and as a result, I slept though the night (as opposed to having to get out of bed after a few hours), I was able to sleep on both sides, and I didn't wake up in incredible pain. I'm sooooo happy!

I did keep the appt with my doc this afternoon. He could see the swelling, notes the changes in the shape of my abdomen. However, he said we cant do a ct scan because it's too close to the surgery: "It would just look like an explosion in there," and I've had too many recently. Dont want to radiate myself to death! He doesn't think it's anything serious. Neither do I, now that the pain has subsided so much.

rae_rae's picture
rae_rae
Posts: 267
Joined: Oct 2010

I am glad you are starting to take a turn for the better. This is about the same time I started to feel "human" again. You can't beat a good nights sleep!

Rae

Jamie1.3cm's picture
Jamie1.3cm
Posts: 188
Joined: Jan 2011

That's for sure. People I tried to explain that to, just didn't get it. It's hard to feel human if you haven't slept well in 6 weeks!

I've been thinking about you and I hope you're doing well.

niprut
Posts: 23
Joined: Jul 2011

I am so pleased you have finally had a good night's sleep. It helps our bodies and our emotions. Sleep gives you the energy to keep on putting one foot in front of the other when things seems really hard.

Take care.

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