Tuesday, February 4, 2014

My 'One Week Follow Up' Appointment

Today I went to see the doctor for my one week follow up appointment.  My surgeon is away this week so I was seeing one of his colleagues.
The purpose of the visit was to remove the drainage tubes (I call them blood buckets).
He came into the room and was familiarizing himself with the file when he said, "You had your surgery a month ago?"
"Um, no," I replied.  "A week yesterday."
He couldn't believe it.  He said I was doing remarkably well for just one week out.
Then we got down to the business at hand.  He reviewed my record of drainage from each tube and quickly informed me that tube #1 would not be coming out.  (That had been my fear.  I knew that there had to be 20cc or less for two consecutive days for the tube to come out.  Tube #2 met that criteria handily, but #1 had output 30cc last night.)
So he removed tube #2.  And OMG it hurt! It stung big time.  But that area had been very sensitive anyway so I wasn't surprised that it hurt.
The pain didn't last long, thank God.
Then he changed the tape on my incision and changed the dressing on the other tube, which bucket I had to empty there because all of a sudden it was full.  He explained that now there's only one tube, it will likely drain more, doing the work of two.  So I'm starting over to reach that two consecutive days of 20cc or less output!
When I got up from the table and put my boots on, he commented again about how well I'm doing.  He was genuinely impressed with my progress. He said that most patients, one week after surgery, are still walking very hunched over.  I am almost walking normally.
Suffice to say, I left there feeling pretty damned pleased with myself!

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