Monday, February 16, 2015

Recent surgery

I can face uncertain days because he lives.   I find my strength through Jesus Christ. 
Since my last blog post, I had faced my fear.  Fear of not knowing how my body would react to a stressful situation.  Fear of wondering if I am making the right decision. Fear of how recovery from surgery would be.  So I laid my fear in Gods hands.  I had a discussion with a surgeon regarding pyloroplasty surgery in December. My gastroenterologist apparently is very good friends with my surgeon.  The surgeon already knew every detail about my health.  It was nice to know my doctor sought him out to inform him of my conditions.  After my talk with the surgeon, I decided to take a chance and have the surgery the day after Christmas.  The scared side of me wanted to run far away from that hospital but then my strong side said how much worse can things actually become, you can do it Sherry!  Initially I was told that I would have maybe 3 to 4 incisions on my abdominal area and surgery should only last about 2 hours.  However they wanted to do an endoscopic as well to make sure they did not puncture any holes in my stomach from surgery.  While waiting to go into surgery, I looked at Scott and you could see the worry in his eyes.  I gave him a kiss and the feeling of his love helped me be stronger.  
When I woke up after surgery, I discovered I actually had a total of 6 incisions on my abdominal area and the surgery took longer than expected.  So of course I couldn't help but wonder what in the world went wrong.  Apparently, my pyloric was attached to a lot of scar tissue from my gallbladder surgery back in 2010.  They had to detach it in order to proceed with the surgery.  Pyloroplasty consists of dividing the pyloric muscle and reconstructing the pyloric channel to improve gastric emptying.  Below is an example of how they refigured my pyloric. 
There is no guarantee that the surgery will be successful.  I was told I was the 9th person with their practice to have had that surgery.  Knowing that they see other patients out of state and in NC seems pretty fascinating, wouldn't you say?  They are eager to see how the gastric emptying and electrogastrogram tests will show in the near future.  If the results are better, than the surgery was a success.  I stayed overnight after my surgery.  They had me on morphine, which didn't do anything for my pain.  I cried when I had to move to go to the restroom.  Tears filled my eyes as I tried to move. The pain was so unbearable.  My chest hurt to breath.  It felt as if my ribs had been crushed it hurt so bad.  I finally told the nurse I couldn't handle the pain anymore and needed something else.  That's when they finally put me on Norco which was a life saver and kept me on it after a week from surgery to help during my recovery time.  That first week after surgery was really rough.  Sure I had pain medication, but as we all know pain medication can cause constipation when you have a stomach disease and IBS.  The pain was extreme.  I couldn't find a good position when trying to sleep.  If I slept on my side, it felt like my whole abdominal area was ripping out of me. 
It took about 1 1/2 weeks for me to get back on my feet and get back in the groove of things.  I was determined to be back to work on the 5th of January.  I knew I had a few limitations but I refused to give in to anything.  I had to be on a liquid/puree diet for 6 weeks after surgery.  Once 5 weeks came around I had already lost another 5 lbs.  I tested myself every now and then with small amounts of whole foods.  By the time 6 weeks came around I wanted to eat everything in sight!  At that point I didn't care if I would hurt or not.  I cant really tell totally if the surgery was a success.  I still have pains, acid reflux, only vomited twice since surgery and I still am not getting the nutrients I need.  I guess time will tell.  As of today, almost 2 months after surgery, I haven't gained any of the lost weight back.  I am able to eat foods but still can't consume more than a cup of food, so that hasn't gotten better.  I see my gastroenterologist in March and I'm sure he will schedule more tests.  I am trying to stay positive.  I refuse to give up.  I give everyday my best. 
On another note, my recent visit with my rheumatologist she couldn't stress enough the importance for me to be aware of any changes with my health.  Such as, becoming too sensitive to the sun, develop a rash, mouth sores or joints becoming red or inflamed.  She told me if symptoms show to notify her immediately in fear of lupus.  I've been watching out for signs but I am not going to stress out over every little symptom that I have.  I can't!  Stress alone cause so much havoc to my body dealing with other diseases, I certainly don't need to add anything more. 
Speaking of changes, my endocrinologist informed me that yes, once again I am vitamin D deficient.  Which of course explains my leg pains.  I am now taking 2000 units of vitamin D.  However, my thyroid levels are completely normal!  Which is awesome!   
Until my next blog, I will continue to pray, strive to keep going and hope to become better. I would love not to have any health issues.  Hey, I can dream right?