Hospital Stay

This hospital stay is much different than the last one.  This one was planned.  The last one began with a trip to the E.R.  This one I went in feeling decent.  The last one I went in with excruciating pain.

I arrived at the hospital at 5:30am for the 7:30am surgery.  They had me undress, prepped me, and shaved my right leg.  They asked the same questions several times – in several different ways.  They stuck an I.V. in my right arm.

They took me back to do a nerve block.  This involved sticking a needle, guided my ultrasound, into the back of my right knee.  I did not like this idea one bit as I would be awake for this part.  It would ease pain post-op though.

They gave me some drugs to relax me.  I spoke to my doctor who said we’d talk more in the O.R. before starting surgery.  That never happened.  I fell asleep before the nerve block.  I woke up after surgery in the recovery room.

During the time I was out they did the nerve block, flipped me over, put me to sleep even better, intubated me, flipped me over again, fixed my achilles tendon, and put a splint on my lower leg and ankle.

I woke up in the recovery room.  It was a peaceful waking.  My thoughts weren’t clear.  My memory was foggy.  I had trouble staying awake for more than two minutes.  No matter, I was whisked to my room, where Diane was waiting.

There’s a dry-erase board in my room with Plan of Care

  • Pain Control
  • Fluids
  • Mobility

I wasn’t in severe pain when I woke up.  I was uncomfortable, but the nerve block was doing it’s job.  They gave me an anti-nausea medication and something for pain.  I had trouble staying awake.  Water and light food was pushed at me.  I had trouble keeping it down, but did manage.

Just a few hours after surgery the PT girls* showed up.  It was mostly to figure out how I can walk while I heal.  I now have a walker.  It’s easier to use than crutches, but it’s slightly embarrassing.

The PT girls will be back today to teach me to navigate stairs.

After my rather short PT session I was quite awake.  My appetite was back.  I started drinking copious amounts of water.  I was feeling better.

A couple of hours after that the nerve block began to wear off.  Ouch.  Surgery is painful.  I’ve been alternating between Percocet and morphine.  The Percocet takes the edge off the pain.  I’ve found the morphine to just make me feel weird and somewhat sleepy.


I had a lousy night’s sleep mostly due to the pain.  Diane insisted on staying with me the whole time.  She fell asleep early on the small couch in the room.  She did crawl into the tiny hospital bed with me briefly.  It’s just too small.

I’m supposed to be discharged today.  I’m still waiting to see my doctor.  I don’t know how things will play out.

I am to put NO weight on my bad leg for a while.  This is going to be difficult.  Even once I get home, I’ll spend a lot of time in bed.  My Kindle should keep me from being too bored.

Therapy has not yet begun.  I have no idea before I can walk without a walker, ride a bike, or climb stairs.  This sucks, but I’m going to follow doctor’s orders.  I want this to heal properly so I don’t have to worry about it again.

*PT girls are the Physical Therapists.  No, they don’t work at PT’s, which is just a few blocks from here.

6 thoughts on “Hospital Stay”

  1. Wow, that shaved right leg looks pro. It reminds me of my if-I-can’t-be-fast-I-might-as-well-shave-my-legs-and-look-fast days.

    Listen to the PT girls, and heal fast, my friend.

  2. I have to agree, they really did a thorough job of shaving that right leg. You could always go ahead and do the left one to match! 😛 Will you be able to do any tele-commuting for work?

  3. “If it’s physical, it’s therapy” was emblazoned on a t-shirt I saw many years ago, worn by a PT at a rehab center where a friend stayed for a couple months following his spinal injury.

    Heal well, and quickly.

  4. I’m glad the surgery is behind you. Here’s to speedy healing! Do everything the doctor says, ok?

  5. Pondero, I’m healing as fast as I can! (pant, pant) Diane has mentioned that I have a “nice smooth leg”.

    Adam, Where do I subscribe to your newsletter?

    Kristy, I’m not shaving anything for a while. I might shave my face before returning to work next week. No tele-commuting. Which is fine. Anything more than casual computer use is difficult anyway. I’m laying on my back with my laptop propped on my belly. Not ideal for more than a quick note.

    Tom, Yep. I’m not ready for PT yet. I do have my dumbells handy so I don’t totally waste this time in bed.

    Elizabeth, Trust me, I am. I really want to tear this splint off my leg. It’s uncomfortable and itchy. Sometimes it’s painful. It feels like an uncomfortable boot full of knives. I know better – and I won’t even see the skin under it until my next appointment – on the 30th.

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