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Liver Surgery Scheduled - questions...

Posts: 102
Joined: Apr 2004

Hi all... been pretty hectic here... Hope all is going well with you and yours.. Hubby finally got a day for liver resection - Aug. 24 at Hopkins. We have a lot of pre-op stuff to do this month and I have some questions for anyone who has had this type of surgery... Excuse me if I ramble :)

1. If you have had this surgery, what was your recovery like at home. What was the insision like/located/how big. Were there drainage tubes? If so what was care like? ie; I am wondering if my hubby will need me at home following the suregery to help with drssings, etc. or will he be able to do this himself. I wonder whether I should stay home from work...and for how long...

2. What type of folow-ups are there after surgery. Were there stiches and/or staples. When did they get removed? Tubes/drainages/dressings - how long till they were removed?

3. Will hubby be able to get up and down stairs following surgery?

4. any other helpful advice appreciated.

Hubby has been having a very difficult time now that chemo is wearing off - he also has Rheumatoid Arthritis and has unbelievable pain from constant flare-ups along with a sore throoat/ear. He just started antbiotics today. He is supposed to be giving blood and participate in a study using his plasma as a "glue" for the surgery. I wonder if the antibiotics will effect his blood donation. i will have to call the hosp. tomorrow... Anyone else out there with RA? If so, how was it controlled during chemo and after chemo? Hubby didn't have flare ups during chemo, but as I said, he is now in unbearable pain, taking Vicadin every 6 hrs. I am to call tom. for new rx without tynenol, as onc. doesn't want him taking so much due to the poss. efffects on liver... Any advice appreciated....

The reality of this is starting to really sink in now, and we are both nervous about the surgery... Please keep us in thoughts and prayers and any advice for pre-op or post-op is greatly appreciated!!
Prayers go out to all of you and thanks for being here in our time of need...
Sally Jo

Posts: 120
Joined: Apr 2004

I'm sure your getting nervous about the surgery date. Sorry to hear that hubby is not feeling well. Will be surprised if they let him give blood while being sick.
My Hubby went in hospital on Tuesday for Surgery. The surgery procedure was long. In ICU that night and moved out Wed. afternoon. Did not need blood transfusion. Released from hospital that Sunday. So total of 5 days. Had to see the surgeon 3 days after he was released from hospital. No staples. He was allowed to shower with bandages also. Also no drainage tubes or care. The incision looks like a half moon (crescent) starting on lower left to under rib cage.
Hubby told me to tell your hubby that he had to sleep on his back the first week. Then he was able to sleep on his side. (opposite) If your sitting in chair helps to have your feet up, because the stomach muscles pullwith them down and he found that very uncomfortable. He slept in recliner chair first few nights. Had difficult time sleeping on back. They gave him percocet for pain. Was stubborn in beggining and would not take them, but once he did he got better. He was allowed to eat regular diet. Small portions. He really didn't have that much appetite.
Stayed home with him the first few days. Was pretty weak. He was able to go up and down stairs.
If they think he is going to be released on a Sunday, ask them to write you out the prescriptions earlier or get them at the hospital. I had a hard time finding one of the prescriptions in my local pharmacy and had to get it from our hospital. His potassium was low and it was a special mix. Wish I had known before, because it was real hard to find that day and most of the drug stores were getting ready to close.
I hope he feels better soon. The surgeon did tell my husband to try to exercise before surgery. Suppose to help with recovery. Know that is hard for hubby to do now. When he feels better try to get him to walk.
My prayers are with you and hubby.

Posts: 102
Joined: Apr 2004

Thanks for the advice! Got his rx's changed so he'll be able to give blood on time and everything, but his pain management does not seem to be working. They put him on a duragesic patch and he's still waiting for it to work - that was yesterday. I kinda wish this was just all over already and things could get vback to some semblence of normal.... Keep in touch and thanks again!
Sally Jo

Posts: 39
Joined: Jul 2004

My wife had a liver resection on March 5th 2004 at Cleveland Clinic. She was in the hospital for 5 days. It was a slow recovery compared to the colon cancer surgergy. It seemed like for the first 3 weeks there was no improvement than all of sudden she got beter each day, but I would say it took 6-8 weeks to recover back to 80%. She is doing very good back to 100% and ceas were taken on 7/20 and were 0.05. Her liver tests were all normal.
Some things she experienced were alot of back aches ( from incision weaken the stomach ). That took along time to heal. The first 3 weeks slept on couch ( couldn`t sleep on stomach ) Her incision still is numb and a little sore. Had trouble with the breathing exercises. Keep pushing him to do them. It takes time to heal , but its worth it all.


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