Today I had three teeth removed under a general anaesthetic. Considering everything, I think it went well.
The appointment letter said to be there for 8am. I woke up at 5am, as the last time I could drink something was 6am and it can sometimes take me a while to get fluid into me. It also gave me time to wake up. I woke Johan up about 6am, after I’d taken my meds, and we both got ready to go. I even got dressed in comfy clothes, but wore my new fluffy purple slippers :p
At about 7am Johan phoned the ward to check there was a bed for me and to tell them that I’d be arriving by ambulance so basically we had no say in when I’d arrive. I’d taken some cyclizine as I’d felt nauseous and didn’t want to vomit (as they would be likely to cancel it if I were sick) so felt quite tired and just rested while waiting.
At 9.30am the ambulance hadn’t shown up, so Johan phoned the ambulance people to confirm they were taking me. One was on its way and it arrived 15 minutes later. This time it was proper stretcher transport, not the accidental one I got last week, so I couldn’t take my wheelchair. This meant Johan and I got confused as I tried to make my own way out of the flat as normal, but then had to manage to walk a few steps to get on the stretcher outside the front door. The ambulance men did hold me up and support me with that, but it was very painful and I felt really ill and dizzy, so it was a bad idea (I offered to crawl as it was only a short distance, but they said that would be undignified). Once on the stretcher I was mostly okay, though we did forget my ear defenders as they were on my wheelchair. I did have my sunglasses on though so that was something.
When we arrived at the hospital they took me up to the ward and I managed to shuffle onto the bed from the stretcher. One of the things I am still able to do is very short bursts of activity to enable transfers, which always surprises people as I do them quickly to try and prevent getting stuck (I’ve tried doing them slowly before and I normally end up getting too tired halfway so need help). Johan gave the nurses a list of things to try and help them understand me a bit better, and they mostly followed it, which was awesome. Before they left the ambulance men told me off for trying to get out of the flat by myself and told me that I really need to use the carry chair next time. That’s me told :p
It was only about 15 minutes of people going through what was going to happen and stuff before they were ready for me. I tried to confirm as much as possible, but I was feeling pretty exhausted by this point so I’m not sure how much I said made sense. I’d already agreed to it all when I could think though so I wasn’t worried. They brought a trolley for me, I did my shuffle over, and they took me down to the theatre. They went through things again, then took me through to be put to sleep. I warned them I’d panic when they put the cannula in (and they kept telling me the needle was out when I was complaining that the cannula itself was hurting). They then gave me some painkiller that I think also makes you drowsy (fentynl or something- I’ll look it up tomorrow :p) and I can’t remember after that.
When I woke up I was in massive amounts of pain. Surprisingly it wasn’t my mouth that was bothering me, but my arms and legs were agony and I also had a horrendeous headache. It turned out they’d given me paracetamol, which explained the headache (note to self- make sure all medical people know never to give me paracetamol) and I suspect my arms and legs were hurting because they were in a bad position and I wasn’t really able to move them. Johan says they were worried by the amount of pain I was in (I may have screamed a few times- I can’t control it that well when I’m tired) but they didn’t show it to me, nor did they show me they were concerned about my full body violent shakiness (I’d put it on the sheet that it happens when my body is overwhelmed).
They took me back to the ward and when I was able to gave me tramadol, which took a few goes to swallow as I was finding it hard to control my mouth. I was on a drip and had to finish the glass of water before they’d take me off it, but the straw it had was really awkward for me. I was struggling to think so wasn’t able to ask Johan to get my hydrant out, which would have been a lot easier for me. I felt absolutely rubbish as there was too much light and noise, and though I had my eye mask I didn’t have my ear defenders so everything was just too much, and was making the pain worse. The tramadol didn’t do anything, so I had some ibuprofen (got Johan to give me some of the liquid stuff I’d brought in rather than trying to swallow any tablets) which helped a bit with the headache and the mouth pain, though did nothing for the arms and legs. I told Johan that I wanted to go home since I’d be more comfortable there, and he and the nurses agreed that was the best idea.
The doctor came to check on me, and his touching me made my voice disappear (he’d obviously not read my sheet). Luckily by that point the noise had died down as everyone else had left so I was able to tolerate the light with sunglasses on, so I got Johan to get my Transformer out so I could type. A nurse came and told me lots of things I can’t remember now, but are on a piece of paper she gave me so I’ll get Johan to be in charge of that. They phoned for the ambulance and a little bit later the same ambulance guys came.
The journey home was uneventful- Johan was talking to one of the ambulance guys and I was able to type a couple of things to join in when I could (we were talking about computers and things). This time they insisted I’d have the carry chair, and I wasn’t going to argue as I knew it was the best idea. I again did a quick shuffle (note to self- explain to new people that quick shuffles are easier for me than doing things slowly for transfers) and I held on to my penguin while they wrapped me in my blanket and strapped me in. They got me to my bed and I collapsed onto it, and I was glad to be home.
So that’s been most of today. Since I got home I’ve done some very basic stuff on my Transformer, had a few soft things to eat (jelly, Milkybar chocolate dessert thing, a prawn cracker and a bit of trifle), had some Mountain Dew to drink, taken more painkillers which actually helped once I took the double dose my GP allows me, and lay in bed. Colin also came over to ask Johan to print some stuff for him, so I was able to whisper to him a bit (my voice came back after a bit of resting, but whispering is a lot easier on my throat). I also had a meltdown when Johan went to the shop and instead of coming into the living room when he came back he disappeared into the kitchen, which made me panic. That was not good.
Plan for the next few days is just to take it easy. I’ve got nothing planned from now until Christmas other than Christmas shopping, which I’ll be doing over the next few weeks. That doesn’t require leaving my bed so I’m happy. Johan’s got some stuff to do with the carer’s association but he can do that himself, now he knows they can help and he’s spoken to them before. They’re doing brilliantly at writing to my social worker. I won’t be going out again for the near future, as the only way I can get back in is by ambulance carry chair. That”s quite scary, actually, especially since I don’t have medical priority for the council housing list yet as I’m not ill enough.
I’m happy that the nurses at the ward did such a good job of taking my needs into consideration today. I think the list helped. I’m also grateful to the ambulance men who helped me and were keen to make me as comfortable as possible. You rock 🙂