Friday, 26 August 2011


Although technically I had an operation yesterday - in that I had a pre-op appointment and a general anaesthetic - it was certainly the easier end of operations. No scalpels, no stitches and not much in the way of after care.

They dived in, took all they could from inside my womb and pulled out, leaving nothing but a pair of disposable pants and sanitary towel in their wake.

There were only two difficulties. My name and my vein.


To explain the name thing you need a tiny bit of back story. I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome way before I started trying to conceive or marry. I got hitched, I indicated to the world my total subjugation to the husband by relinquishing my maiden name and taking his. I changed my name with my passport, bank, mortgage, work, opticians, friends, I didn't get round to changing my name with the doctors. Then about a year after I got married, and realised conception wasn't quite as easy as point and shoot, I made a conscious decision not to change my name so that the doctor wouldn't lose my previous diagnosis.

All carried on happily for another three years. I had to remember to check-in for appointments and pick up prescriptions, under my maiden name, but other than that there wasn't a hitch.

When I started IVF in January of this year I had to present my passport. My passport was in my married name, so I also brought along my marriage license to join the gap in name. It was at this point things got confused. The IVF clinic (which is linked to, but separate, from the NHS unit) insisted on using my married name, the NHS stuck to my maiden.  Whenever I presented myself for appointments I started schizophrenically referring to myself by both names.

At the pre-op appointment things got even more befuddled so the nurse decided to change my name on the NHS records to my married one. However, this didn't seep all the way down through the system, so by the time I got to the day patients check in things were a mess of complications. I checked in in my married name, the name on my bed was my maiden name. The name on my wrist band was my maiden name, the name on my notes was my married name. People kept popping in and double checking who the hell I was.  Today I will go to my GP with my marriage certificate to, once and for all, close that circle.

Oh, and after all that, they never found the old notes diagnosing me with PCOS afterall.

My hands are not my best features. They are riddled with blue veins.  Not unlike Madonna's, although that is where our similarity ends. So I was surprised that the anaesthetist appeared to be having issues putting the a needle in my hand for the anaesthetic to seep in. He was using straps and whacking my veins with the enthusiasm of a hard-core heroine addict, but seemed to be really struggling.  When the senior guy turned up it the cause became apparent  - I was being practiced on my a junior guy. He'd been skimming the top of my vein rather than plunging the needle into the blood stream. Still we got there in the end.

Oh and have I mentioned how much I enjoy a general? Sweet, sweet oblivion. I could so have been an opium addict in a previous life.

Recovery has been fine.  I was in a bit of pain last night but I'd been sent home from hospital with some hard core painkiller (which I must remember to hide from the husband, whose eyes lit up with he saw them).

Today I am mainly chilling out at home.

Crocheting a monkey.

As you do.

I should get the results of the biopsy in a couple of weeks.


  1. There you are! All alive and everything, despite those setbacks. Ow, poor veins.

    I love going under too, except for The Dark Thoughts that plague me. Like: How do they know you don't feel any pain? MAYBE you just don't REMEMBER it. That sort of thing.

    Anyway, down those pills, girl. And have a good rest.

  2. I had one of those: Who are you really? interrogations once. Been avoiding dealing with humans eversince ;-)

  3. Why don't they just write in big letters on the top of their file: "Ms Jekyll (née Hyde)"? Then you can happily use either ego and they will know who you are.

    Actually isn't that how they do it in the Old Girls' News? (Cold shudder)

    We don't have that problem here though, as we have these things called 'ID cards'...
    Actually we have two, the normal ID card, and another specific one for social security, which they swipe at every occasion, and which tells them how you should be charged depending on your social security status.

    Let us see that monkey when it's done - most intruiging!

    G x

  4. I am a big fan of the medicine induced sleep as well. I've told my husband about a million times since my egg retrieval how wonderful the snooze was... He is convinced I'm some sort of undercover addict!

  5. Glad to hear that the operation wasn't too bad. Wishing you a few quiet days recovering/crocheting.

  6. So glad all went well and you are one step closer to the next IVF. I had the big name change issue too for awhile...I ended up not changing it until I was pregnant with baby #1...because it wasn't my maiden name...but my 1st husband's name and I don't think my current husband wanted his baby boy rolled out in a bassinette with my ex-husband's last name on it. Ha ha! Had it not been for that....I probably would still be using it! All my degrees are in that name and all my medical records for about 15 it was hard!

    Hope the results of the biopsy are favorable AND...from reading about your NHS...I truley hope the US never goes national on healthcare...cuz even though the current system least I can navigate through it and make things happen on my own.


  7. The name confusion is one of the reasons I didn't change mine -- I knew I'd forget one really important place.

    I like the oblivion, too. I always wake up really pissed off that someone is bothering me. I just want to sleep, people!

    Glad everything went well and hoping for good biopsy results!

  8. ouchie re: your veins and the hack attack
    I too love general and get conscious sedation for fillings at the dentist...yep an addict in a past life ;)

  9. So glad your procedure went well. What did they discover during their spelunking expedition?

    Oooh, and please post a picture of your crocheted monkey! I love to knit stuffed animals and other creatures. I made a really cool set of aliens last year.

  10. Hang on, hang on. You're crocheting a monkey?? Is it for me? Excellent, thanks

  11. I hope you will share the crocheted monkey when you are through. I'd like to see how many painkillers you were taking. :)

    Sorry to hear about the novice needleman. Glad the rest went well though (aside from not knowing who you are...)

  12. Glad to hear it all went well - especially as I am due for mine this Friday.

    Erm, scrap that. 5 days overdue and counting. Don't think they'll operate so late in my cycle ... Anyhoo. When it *eventually* happens I'll go in looking forward to the snooze! x

  13. Glad that it went okay, paper pants and all. But the vein search does not sound amusing.

    I have the same problem with my name, by the way. Our initial diagnosis and first few years of trying - maiden. Then, when I switched to my married: pandemonium. You'd think there are systems to account for these discrepancies. Apparently not.


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