Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Apprehensive with reason

This morning I went in to have the external drain removed from my abdomen; something I’d been dreading, a little like having to look at a dentist appointment on the calendar and with each passing day you know it won’t go away. They put this thing in to collect bile and other fluids after my gall bladder was removed and it had served it purpose.

Many years ago I had a collapsed lung and had a similar type drain in my chest. I had no idea how much instant pain could be generated by the removal of that chest tube. The doctor used some kind of distraction to momentarily catch me off guard and then I felt like I’d been hit with a hot poker. I was told that the removal of the abdominal drain tube wouldn’t be any fun either.

I was told to take two of the high powered pain killer tablets before going in this morning and I took them about fifteen minutes before I arrived. I figured we’d wait around in the reception room awhile and the medicine would be in full gear by the time the doctor got around to seeing me; wrong, there were no other patients and we were led to the treatment room immediately.

The fears that had been working on me were not altogether imagined, the removal process while only a few seconds, was like giving birth to a rattle snake. It wasn’t a raw burning pain like when the chest tube was removed; this was more of an extreme displeasure that just kept on as the tube exited. Once it was out the discomfort continued and even increased; the pain medicine seemed to be of little if any help. The drive home was no fun either and all I wanted was for it to be over.

I went straight to bed and Lucy warmed up some heating pads. I no sooner put my head down than the pain went away and I slept for a couple of hours. I took a second dose of pain medication at the four hour mark to keep it working. The pain hasn’t come back, thank goodness for that; but my head is spinning and it is difficult to think clearly. Other than that it’s been a perfectly splendid day.

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