Round 3, enough already…. March 17, 2014Posted by Stella☆LunaC in to liver transplant and beyond.
Tags: incisional hernia, liver transplant
Mar. 3: Mike went in for evaluation of 2 incisional hernias that had progressively got larger by the week. We spent 6 hours in pre-op preparatory meetings, lining up a surgery date, pre-op tests were being arranged, all was go, until the admissions desk called to tell us our insurance company (we had only started with) had termed our policy for non-payment. The EFT I gave over the phone on Jan 29, never went through. Immediately, a hospital Financial Counselor came to our rescue and helped get us back on board with the Marketplace, which resulted in a 3rd application for health insurance being taken over the phone. The first two had collapsed during administrative snaffoos galore, and we were down to the wire. After finalizing a new application, we went home to wait until I could get our HIRSP insurance reinstated, through yet another “extension” grant. A phone call the next morning at 7:00am and we were back on board with our old insurance, One. Last. Time.
The next day we confirmed Mike was still in the books for surgery the following week, and so we spent the weekend waiting, relief mixed with apprehension.
Mar. 12: Wednesday, we were called in do pre-op labs, chest x-ray and EKG. We were in and out in about 5 hours.
Mar. 13: Thursday we arrived at 9:30am, a half-hour early, so I went and got my parking pass for the week. Mike was taken to First Day Surgery where we were put in a small prep room to wait for the surgery.
At 2pm, they told me Mike was out of OR, and would be in Recovery for the next 2 hours. I was sent to a private waiting room where I was to meet with Dr. D’Alessandro to discuss Mike’s surgery. When he came in, he told me it was a little more extensive than he imagined; the hernias on either side had little more than a bridge of skin between the two separating them! He then explained how he was able to go in and sew in a large piece of mesh that would eventually grow in with his fascia to form a permanent second “skin”. That would take approximately 6 months to 1 year to complete. He would need to take it easy for quite a while as this next recuperation time would be 6-11 weeks. The third suspected umbilical hernia was not one, but simply a layer of fatty tissue left over from Mike’s June emergency hernia operation, and did not require repairs.
Mike was moved to the Transplant wing at 4:15pm, and ready to begin his recovery.
Day 1 post-op: Mike was in good spirits, they even had him sit up on the edge of the bed for just a few moments.
Day 2 post-op: Mike’s abdomen appeared quite distended when I arrived, so I asked him about that. He said Dr. Fernandez had already been in that morning and indicated there was an infection, which he marked with a temporary marker. That mark would be their base line for progress. He was given clear broths, juices and jello, but had no appetite. He had a rough day, was very pale, very nauseous and throwing up, so they took him off clear liquids and put him back on ice chips again. His temp had come down from the day before. (99.9) and they said his WBC had come down from 2 days earlier. They began loading him with antibiotics, potassium and magnesium drips as well as Lasik, to help clear his bladder. Later that day, we went for a walk, and he did really well. So far, he was in good spirits.
Day 3: Mike’s abdomen appears ever-so-slightly less distended, he said he felt it was not right. Dr. Lucey, Dr. D’Alessandro and the other OR Dr. (name?) took another look at Mike’s incision, agreed there was no change in appearance. They would keep an eye on it over the next couple days and maybe let Mike get back on clear liquids again tomorrow. He is still getting antibiotics, as well as other IV’s, and is generally just tired of all of this.
Hopes tomorrow brings a better day….Mike wants me to stay home. We will see….