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Home from the hospital again!

salls41's picture
Posts: 340
Joined: Apr 2012

So some of you may remember I was hospitalized 3 weeks ago with an infection and had to have my expanders removed 2 weeks before my exchange surgery was already scheduled! I experienced another emotional bi lateral mastectomy. It was so hard! This past thursday I had my stitches out and my tubes removed. On Friday evening I had a belly ache.. old fashioned belly hurts. I went to bed and woke up saturday with a belly ache. Not too awful bad but pain across my belly button and it hurt if I moved too fast. Sunday morning I knew something was definitely not right so I called my PS to rule out that it could be in anyway related to getting my tubes out etc. He said no and get to urgent care where I could have a white count done since I just came off this staph infection. I sat in urgent care waiting room for almost 2 hours, crying most of the time as my pain level went from 5 to 10 in no time!I finally saw the doc and he asked me a few questions while I was sitting on the table and then asked for urine specimen. No problem at my age! He came back with in 10 mins and said the specimen was clear and they would draw blood and CALL ME IN 24-48 hours! WTH?? He said see the ER if my symptoms got worse. My hubby was sooooo pissed. I was totally frustrated and aggravated by this point and tired so I told hubby please take me home I can see someone on Monday. He did take me home but was not content with that as I laid in bed crying. I know this post is long but you really have to hear the details.. I am still amazed at some of it. My daughter came over and explained to me that I really need to see about my white count and that I did not want ceptic and she named all sorts of things that could be going on. Hubby went to show her where my pain was and pushed on my belly~ I thought I would DIE! So I knew I was in trouble and agreed to go to ER. We got there at about 4pm. We sat for 4 1/2 hours. I cried, I begged my hubby to just take me home it was too painful to sit there and we were just told they were sorry they could not even begin to tell us how long we would wait. Well finally hubby found me a small couch like thing I could lay on and we got a pillow and I laid down to die. A friend he talked to on the phone told him to tell them I was cancer patient at the desk and see if it got us anywhere. He did and they should have had all that in their computers from my triage on arrival, but it wasn't so the nice little girl put the info in and with in 20 minutes I was in..thank you cancer you may have saved my life... weird huh? The ER doc asked a few questions and sent me for abdominal CT and at 230am Sunday/Monday I had my perforated, gangerous appendix removed. This hurts like h3ll ya'll! I have neve experienced anything so painful.. anyone else??
Thanks for listening to my long drawn out story. I just keep wondering how much more can I take and what next?

Posts: 245
Joined: May 2012

for your husband and daughter! They saved your life. What is wrong with that damned hospital? Really. Is there any way a complaint can be filed against them with some kind of hospital overseer? That is totally unacceptable! In a third world country better care would be given. That hospital sounds like our MetroHealth here in Cleveland Ohio- one step better than a witch doctor.

I rant. Breathe....Oh I am so glad this was caught. How are you doing today? When and who do you see about this now? And what about the reconstructive now? You are such a wonderful person on the board, reaching out to help all of us. Let us carry you close now.

My prayers are with you and you are on my mind night and day,

Posts: 2515
Joined: May 2009

What a nightmare, you've been through!!!!! ER's can be so frustrating.....if I ever have to go, first thing I will tell them is, I am a cancer patient...lesson learned, sadly at your expense...I had my appendix removed at 14.....Ia long time ago, but I can still remember how painful it was....

Glad things turned out okay....rest and recoup..
Hugs, Nancy

DianeBC's picture
Posts: 3886
Joined: Jun 2009

Sorry for all you've been through. Prayers and hugs and rest!

Hugs, Diane

lynn1950's picture
Posts: 2574
Joined: Jun 2008

You have been through so much. Time to heal. So sorry for the misery you've been through these past few weeks! xoxoxo Lynn

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2803
Joined: Jun 2010

And it could have been horrible had it burst. BUT I guess it was good that it was appendicitis and not cancer??? In this case, cancer was the good guy? Unbelievable. Something else I learned (don't know how) is if the ER is expecting you (i.e., if you notify your onc or primary care ahead of time and they let the ER know), it might make things go more quickly - basically you've already been triaged by a medical person the urgency of your care had already been established (or not).

It is simply awful to get sick on weekends anymore! And then there's the whole access issues during the week.

I hope you're recovering uneventfully now.

Stay well everyone.


missrenee's picture
Posts: 2137
Joined: Apr 2010

I hate that this happened to you, but I'm so thankful that you're okay and you finally got the care you needed. You certainly didn't need this on top of everything else that's been going on. Thank you so much for relating your story, though. This could help any of us should we need to be in the ER for anything--before you even give them your name--say loudly--"I'm a Cancer Patient!!"

Hope you are feeling better and recovering from this miserable set-back. It's just gotta get better--right?!

Hang in there, Sandy.

Hugs, Renee

Kylez's picture
Posts: 3765
Joined: May 2009

So sorry..you have had a nightmare! Praying you recover quickly and have zero problems in the future!

salls41's picture
Posts: 340
Joined: Apr 2012

I have a terrifying fear of the simple lizard, salamander. When I was under going chemo one some how got in my house and slithered by me! I was so weak but let me tell you my adrenaline went through the roof! I called hubby cryong, carrying on..poor hubby, notice I am crying in all my posts.. anyway he rushed home from work and could not find it anywhere. He stayed with me an hour.. nothing, he finally found a small hole we determined it came and also went through. He plugged the hole and went to work. Soooooo I can hardly move from the awful pain I am in this morning.. I decide I need to get all of my meds, water, snack etc rounded up and put next to the couch and settle in for a bit and let the pain med do its thing. I decide to walk the dog real quick so even she won't bother me for a while. I walked around the sofa to pick up the lease and low and behold their is that stinking azz lizard!! I had a major meltdown. Called hubby ..yes crying..and sent my sister a text with a picture of it. She was already on her way to see if I needed anything and of course when she got here, he was gone. Hubby came home... they searched together but no luck. Gone! So they determined must be a hole under baseboard heater he went through. Hubby went back to work. Sister and I sat and chatted and calmed me down. That little son of a gun popped back out not 5 minutes after hubby left! Well thank God for sisters, mine is awesome. She got him and he is gone from my house now!
Ok.. I have really had enough now with out all this too!
Again, thanks for letting me share

Noel's picture
Posts: 3100
Joined: Apr 2009

You had a horrible experience, if that word can even describe it and I am so sorry. Prayers and hugs coming your way!

Hugs, Noel

MsGebby's picture
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

such a horrible day for you ... I want to add something that could help if something comes up like that again ... CALL 911. Have an ambulance take you in and you will be seen right away!

You may wait a bit afterwards, but you will be in the ER and have nurses there taking care of you before the ER doctor comes in. Again, you have to make sure you mention the cancer bit. It does help them to get moving.

So sorry this whole thing happened but happy to know you are OK .... my goodness ...

Hugs, Mary

laughs_a_lot's picture
Posts: 1369
Joined: Mar 2011

the lizzard didn't take the pain with him as he went away. Now that would have been justice from your standpoint.

CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

Oh Sandy, I am so very sorry for all that you have been through. I am praying that the very worst is over and that you will begin to really heal.

A few tips from an old-timer: skip urgent care in the future unless it is something very minor. We are immunocompromised and the ER is (unfortunately) where we need to be.

Also, always stress your history. Between my cancer and my heart attack, I am usually in a room with an IV within 10 minutes. I am not saying that I get out of there in a timely manner, but at least I am on a monitor and have an IV right away. And the ER beds (miserable stretchers) beat the ER chairs...lol.

One other liitle point, do not ever underestimate your pain because the ER triages patients and pain is one of the criteria that they use to determine how quickly you are seen.

I had my appendix out many, many years ago (1968). My dad (a physician) figured out that my right-sided pain was appendicitis very quickly and mine did not rupture. But my poor older brother had the same pain a few days later and was totally ignored and his did rupture! How weird is that?

Anyway, it took us both a few weeks to recover (him maybe a little longer because he had drains, etc.

Praying that you will recover quickly now, but take it easy! Geez, you have been through hell.

CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

P.S. Pain management is very important to your recovery, so take your pain meds as prescribed. Pain meds help us get up and move faster and that is key to a quick recovery. Pain meds work best on mild to moderate pain so don't let your pain get out of hand. If one pain med makes you too nauseated or knocked out, ask for another and/or an antinausea drug to take (I like the under-the-tongue instantly dissolving zofran).

When the pain meds are working (about 15-30 min later), try and get up and take a short walk. Bedrest causes so many complications. You want to take it easy, but you need to get up and move when you are able.

Pain meds will probably make you constipated. Ask your physician what he/she recommends for this.

Hope this helps. I figure that I have had >15 surgeries now, so I guess that makes me somewhat of an unfortunate expert. ;-)

New Flower
Posts: 4299
Joined: Aug 2009

Sandy, I am very sorry for the pain and nightmare you were going through. It old times before CT physicians were able to diagnosed appendix by symptoms and palpating.
Please rest and take care of yourself. Did they give you antibiotics?
My insurance has a nurse 24/7 line which suppose to navigate patient through difficult times.
New Flower

Posts: 85
Joined: Jul 2012

Hi Sandy I am so sorry for what you had to go through. I ask myself sometimes how much can we deal with on top of the cancer we already have. I hope you are feeling better. You are an inspiration to us all. Hope you have much smoother sailing from here on.


Angie2U's picture
Posts: 2992
Joined: Sep 2009

So very sorry for everything you went through. Lots of gentle hugs and prayers!

salls41's picture
Posts: 340
Joined: Apr 2012

I appreciate you all so much! Cynthia, thanks for the advice. Funny, I was just telling hubby maybe I should not give in to the pain and try to wean myself from the meds (not a pill popper) but your advice makes so much more sense. I hate this pain so much, and I hate being kicked to the ground all over again! I am thankful so many of you understand.

CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

I am continually reminding patients that pain meds are not prescribed so much for your pain as your recovery. When used appropriately, they can be key to a swift recovery. I take them and then get up and take short walks as soon as possible after surgery. This prevents further infections and muscle wasting.

Wean yourself slowly and anticipate that pain will be worse at some times: afternoons and evenings (may be related to inflammation and temperature also increasing at night), certain activities, etc. After a large surgery, I have found that I often still require either a pain pill or advil, tylenol, etc. in late afternoon for a few weeks.

Less medicine is always best, but do use appropriate pain relief if it is really helping you recover.

salls41's picture
Posts: 340
Joined: Apr 2012

I decided to go ahead and call the surgeons office yesterday about the intense cramps and my inability to pee. I will see him this afternoon. I just can not believe that this is still so painful and not being able to pee normal. I have to use all the water tricks to get it to happen. I try to deep breath before I even go in thinking it is me, but each time it is several long minutes before it finally happens.
Thanks for all of your advice cynthia! Happy to say my swelling has gone down and some of the surgery pain is much better.

DebbyM's picture
Posts: 3293
Joined: Oct 2009

What did you find out today at the doctor's Sandy?

Alexis F's picture
Alexis F
Posts: 3602
Joined: May 2009

Glad the swelling is going down and that your pain is better. Wondering how your appt. went also.

Hugs, Lex

Posts: 245
Joined: May 2012

how the appointment went. Post when you can


salls41's picture
Posts: 340
Joined: Apr 2012

Waiting for scheduling to call. Doc wants to do a CT to see what is happening inside. Maybe the start of an absess. I am still in a holding pattern here. He did up the pain meds and that helped. Hopefully scheduling will call today and get me in before Friday!
Thank you all for your prayers and love and support!

VickiSam's picture
Posts: 9085
Joined: Aug 2009

Please continue to call and insist on getting in asap!!!!

Keep us posted on your progression. MRI pending?

Strength, Courage and HOPE for a Cure.

Vicki Sam

Ritzy's picture
Posts: 4382
Joined: Aug 2009

is all I can say! You poor thing! I am so sorry! If you haven't heard by now for an appointment, please call and pester them until you get your appointment made! You've been thru enough already! Ok? Thinking of you and praying!

Sue :)

susie09's picture
Posts: 2933
Joined: Jul 2009

Unbelievable! I'd love to give you the biggest hug ever! And, you know we understand! It's good that you can share whatever you're feeling and gone thru with us, your sisters!

Just glad you're home!


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