Thursday, 23 December 2010

Pre-Op (not in a transexual way)

It would be fair to say I was already feeling somewhat trepidacious about tomorrow’s operation, today’s pre-op appointment added new worries.

Oddly enough it wasn't the actual scrape (despite the archaic image that conjures) but the general anaesthetic that was causing me the most fear.

I imagined being strapped to a hospital trolley whilst a large rubber mask piping sleep-gas half suffocated me, or maybe cotton wool soaked in ethanol would be administered from behind whilst I struggle to free myself.

It is possible I have read too many Agatha Christie's.

I confided my fears to the husband who laughed in my face gently explained that nowadays anaesthetics are done by injection. So that was a relief.

(Although now I am imagining tranquiliser darts.)

Melodramatic? Moi?

But now I have a new worry. The girl (and yes, I do mean that in a somewhat derogatory way) who went through the pre-op form with me today was less than helpful.

She checked my file and confidently wrote down the procedure I was due to have ‘Hysteroscopy and Mirena Coil insertion’.

I gently pointed out I have had this. In August.

I tried to explain the procedure I was due to have but came up with an unforeseen problem. How the hell do you pronounce ‘curettage’? I tried three times before resorting to womb scrape.

She crossed out the Mirena Coil bit.

We continued the pre-op questions. At the end of the appointment I wasn’t happy. Call me pernickety but I was really quite keen to establish that they would perform the right operation.

The girl disregarded my concerns with a, “You haven’t signed the consent form so they won’t be able to do anything without you checking it is the right procedure.”

I countered with a “But do you have my up-to-date notes? Do you know what the surgery should be?”

“Your notes are all here” she confidently tapped the pile of notes from which only moments earlier she had extracted the wrong information about what procedure I was due to have.

“Yes, but, why then did you not have the right information about what procedure I am supposed to have tomorrow?”

She looked at me with utter incomprehension, her expression for all the world like my dog’s when I explain why he can’t eat any of my pizza. Eager to please, hopeful, but really very, very little going on behind the eyes (I leave it to you to decide whether that last sentence referred to my dog, the pre-op nurse, or both).

In one last desperate attempt to get her point across she reiterated that I’d be signing the consent form the next day so could check then.

Next I asked her what time I should get the husband to come and collected me after surgery. She was on much happier ground here stating, “Obviously we don’t have the list of appointments yet, so we don’t know when you’ll be finished.”

The use of the word ‘Obviously’ irked me. Is it ‘obvious’ that you wouldn’t have a list of operations happening tomorrow morning in your hospital. I mean I get there can be emergency admissions and not everything is set in stone, but a ball-park time, maybe?

No, clearly not.

So tomorrow I will be up earlier than a child at Christmas [see, keeping it topical] to go for an operation apparently of my choosing. What shall I go for? Designer Vagina? A bit of Christmas Vajazzle? (That last link is not suitable for work, if any of you are still at work.)


  1. Wow, that last link had me on the verge of vomit... well played. As for surgery of choice, I'd go with a baby implant. You might as well cut out the wait time for IVF if you get to have a procedure of your choosing :)

  2. Will be keeping fingers very crossed for you. I promise, they'll check everything again with you at least three times tomorrow, and it'll be the surgeon that'll be doing the checking. Every time I've had surgery I've had a pre-op with a helpless, hopeless, clueless person, and then on the day gone through it all again with a ward sister, the surgeon, and the anaesthetist.

    (As for H, well, they got around to calling him at some point after the op, but never ever ever could they tell him when I'd be ready for him to collect. Never never not once. ARGH. He had to spend the whole day on stand-by, pacing a hole into the carpet).

    Fingers crossed, will be thinking of you, many hugs, etc.

  3. I thought everyone had moved beyond vajazzling. Thanks for bringing that back!

    May's comment gives me hope that they will do what they're supposed to do, rather than some random surgery where you wake up missing a kidney. Also, I find anesthesia to be no big deal. But I do not have any odd reactions to it, and I'm always up for a nap.

    Good luck tomorrow. I hope that this does the trick.

  4. I'm going for surgery January 5th and I feel your pain (metaphorically, not yet physically, of course). They can't even give me a ball park of when they'll be phoning my ride or how much notice they'll be given. They don't know what my post-op care will be and don't seem concerned in the least as to how I get the time off work. I'm supposed to ask, that day, for a doctor's note. Keep in mind I won't actually see the doctor because, hello, I'll be unconscious. Lovely.

    You'll be in my thoughts tomorrow and throughout the season (see, I keep it topical too!). Sending lots of good thoughts and warm fuzzies your way!! xoox

  5. Hoping you get the right surgery...yikes. I'll be sending good thoughts. And I wasn't brave enough to click the link.

  6. I was annoyed along with you throughout, and then you got to Designer Vagina and totally cracked me up. Thanks for that! May this brainfartress not be the one performing tomorrow's operation. For the love. Best of luck! And sure, go for the Vajazzle!

  7. May's right - they will check at least 3 times with you tomorrow, both what you're having and whether that really is your signature on the consent form. Though if it's a free choice, definitely go for the baby implantation. Maybe a womb transplant too?
    At the end of the day, as long as the surgeon knows what he's doing, and you know what he's doing, it doesn't matter too much if the pre-op clinic woman gets all confused... and wants to eat your pizza...
    GAs are fine actually. Injection in the hand, it stings a bit going up the arm, vision goes a bit "sparkly" and your last thought is inevitably "but I'm still awake!" before waking up in recovery.
    That last link... got me some very strange looks from the husband...

  8. OMG, I can't believe "vajazzle" is a real site! Did you see all the rings in that girl's "lips"??? Ooops, I mean, your pre-op nurse was an idiot and it totally sucks that you're going into tomorrow's appointment with so little infor... did you see all the rings?? OMG!!

  9. Hope it goes well today.
    You will be sent insane by the 85th person who comes to confirm your name, dob and what op you are having to the point where you will want dead eyes back you know!

  10. Good Luck!! Hope you wake up in time for Christmas! ;-) only joking

    Thinking of you today.

    Loved the link ;-)

  11. Ooh, you might be in at this moment - crossing my fingers, right now. (Makes typing a little bit difficult.)

    Good luck, and lots of it, WFI. It'll all be over before you know it.

  12. fingers crossed for a stress free op for you...and a merry xmas of course

  13. I hope that this blog finds you either in deep medically enhanced slumber or in a groggy state of mind from the anesthaesia. Either way, I hope it goes/has gone well.
    Hope you and your beloved have a lovely Christmas.


I've resisted word verification for ages but I'm getting so many spam comments at the moment that I think it is time. Sorry!