Friday, 21 September 2012
Monday 20th August- MOAS II +6 Days
After a couple of days of good rest and a quiet room I felt much better. My mind was clearing and for the first time I felt lucid. I think it was a combination of the quality rest but also the effects of the drugs from the operation wearing off. The flashing lights and psychedelic hallucinations that I had been experiencing had stopped and I now felt I was getting back to normal. I was also using the PCA less and less and therefore not getting so much morphine into my system which I’m sure also helped.
One of the things that I found that really helped me was playing music via the speaker on my phone or laptop. It helped me focus on something tangible and kept me in the real world. With nothing to occupy myself I found that the mind would wander and any effects from the drugs would manifest themselves as the mind was otherwise unoccupied.
On the morning rounds the doctor had said that I could have my stomach drains removed. True to form the nurse arrived shortly after to remove them, all six of them. Often these are removed in two goes on two consecutive days but not today! With a couple of presses on the PCA to help each drain was removed on the third deep breath. Whilst not particularly painful it certainly made my toes twitch a bit and I was glad when it was all done. A couple of the drains continued to leak a bit and rather than a dressing a stoma bag was placed over the wound to catch anything that came out until the wound closed over.
Tracey arrived shortly after and then Jade the physio arrived to take me on a short walk around the ward. She switched my oxygen from a mask to a small tube that fits into the nostrils. She also showed Tracey how to switch the oxygen over from the main feed on the wall above my bed to a portable bottle held on the ward so that we could go for walks when we wanted.
The previous day I had also been allowed to start on some clear soup and jelly and continued with this managing to drink tea and water and to eat clear soup, jelly and ice cream throughout the day with no adverse affects. The portions were small but I still could not finish a portion of any of them. A product of not eating anything for so long I guess and the stomach shrinking.
Later that day my epidural was also removed. The area where it was inserted was red and a little fluid had formed so swabs were taken just to be safe. As the epidural wore off and sensation returned the discomfort levels rose slightly for a short while and I used my PCA a little more.
The doctors came around on their afternoon rounds and remarked on how well I was doing now. They also advised that my catheter could be removed. This was to be done at midnight! Midnight! Apparently there was a reason for this. The theory is that once the catheter is removed the patient can then go off to sleep and the bladder fills during the night and the patient wakes the following morning and empties the bladder starting a “normal routine”. It didn’t work for me and within an hour of having the catheter removed I was needing a pee. This continued throughout the night and I kept the nurses busy collecting the “live” pee bottles as they still needed to measure output and test my urine.
The doctor had also said that I now needed to get moving around as much as possible. This in turn would help bring my oxygen levels back to normal and get my bowels working again. Once these two things happen then we could think about going home......