Saturday, October 24, 2015

Round 2 of 2

Day 1

Back to the Future Day

  I recognize that I have great and perhaps somewhat unrealistic expectations: the surgery, recovery and outcome had gone so splendidly for my left foot, is it realistic to expect the same for my right foot? 

  I was expecting a general anesthetic(G.A.) like my first experience but my lingering upper respiratory infection increased the risk of bronchial spasm so my best option was now a spinal block combined with sedation. "So, if the spinal block is less risk, why would one chose a general anesthetic?" I asked the anesthesiologist. She explained that some people don't like the idea of being awake, or having a needle put in their back and it is preferred because of flow. You can recover much faster from a G.A. than a spinal block = more surgeries completed. There was an irrational part of me thought that I could beat an anesthesiologist at their own game. You got me last time, so you’re not going to get me this time, I thought. "How do you feel?” my anesthesiologist asked as the fentanyl was entering my veins. “A little strange,” I said as she prepared to insert the needle. “Round your back like an angry cat,” the nurse said. I felt a small pinch and then she laid me down gently on the operating bed and put a sheet up vertically to block my view of my feet. “Can I see?” I asked as I crunched to peak overtop. “No,” the team answered assertively as I lay back down. Fortunately, my anesthesiologist knows better than I and my plan to stay awake didn't playout. I was nicely sedated for the entire event and woke up just in time to wave goodbye to everybody in the operating room. 
    "Can I please have some ice chips?" I asked the nurse since I was a now a pro and knew what I could forward to. "Not yet," she replied, "we need to wait until you get some feeling back, maybe another half hour."  Two hours later, their first attempt to switch me from the bed to a rolling chair was unsuccessful.  "Try to squeeze you butt and thighs," the nurse urged.  It wasn't happening and back into the bed I went. It took 4 hours for the feeling in the bottom half of my body to return. Wow, with my G.A. I was out within an hour last time; huge difference in recovery.  Dr. Brunet explained that the Lapidus procedure went as planned; however, he had to put a temporary pin in my big toe because my tendon was too short and it needed to be stretched. The pin is expected to remain for 3-4 weeks.
  I left the hospital painless, peppy and pleased with my first dose of acetaminophen and hydromorphone in my system.  "Have a look at my foot," I urged my Mom once I made myself comfortable at home. She removed the sock covering my foot and I think I was more shocked than she was.  There was lots more blood than I had seen at the hospital. It wasn’t long before my pain dramatically increased. I had the chills, nausea, vomiting and the clock slowed down so that I could feel every intense palpitation in my foot. By 1:30 am, after leaving a voicemail at Dr. Brunet's office out of desperation, I decided to double my dose of hydromorphone and take a sleeping pill.  Eventually, I was able to fall asleep and with Dr. Brunet’s approval, I was able to manage my pain more effectively.

Day 4
  Today, my pain has reduced significantly without the influence of medication. It’s amazing how fast the body heals. I expect to have my plaster cast replaced with fiberglass in two days and get a first glimpse of my new foot.

Notice the pin in my big toe. The Jays game is on!

Aerial view. Ready for Halloween.

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