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District of Columbia
Sunday, July 3, 2022

My THD Surgery and Recovery 🍑🪡 — Success or Failure?

TMI 😮: My family has a history of gut problems and butt problems. So, no surprise it’s come to be my turn. Most of the problems seem to come from one unifying issue — constipation or hard, dry stool that is difficult to pass. After food leaves the small intestine, it enters the large intestine (the colon). The large intestine is basically classified as being 3 or 4 sections (ascending on the right, transverse across the bottom of the ribs, descending on the right, and the sigmoid colon which twists in an S-shape and leads to the rectum). The colon contains lots of healthy bacteria and provides your body with the ability to reabsorb fluids and necessary substances from the stool. It depends on what you eat somewhat, but overall, if too much water is taken our or the stool sits in the colon too long, then it becomes much more difficult to pass along to the rectum and out of the anus. Internally, this can cause weakening of the colon walls (diverticulosis); and then at the exit, it can cause tissue to tear (fissures) or blood vessels to bulge repeatedly (hemorrhoids). These can cause bleeding, pain, itchiness, an inability to sense when it’s time to pass stool. 🚽

I had a mysterious gastrointestinal bleed in late 2019, and the doctors could not find the source. It never hurt one bit, except for the excessive wiping after gushing coagulated blood out every 10-20 minutes. 🪣🩸 And though they said it was likely diverticula related, they kept pointing to hemorrhoids, too. After an 8-day hospital stay (near nightmare), I went to my other healthcare team for follow ups. One insisted that she do an endoscopy to rule out stomach issues. And it came back fine — better than the previous one I had, actually. So, I followed up with a colorectal specialist. And he, like the others before, said I had some options — the best one of which would be to cross my fingers and hope that it wouldn’t bleed again. He agreed that, since the cause couldn’t be pinpointed, the solution might be to remove the entire colon, which would be less than optimal and a difficult surgery, and while it would solve the problem, would lead to a lifetime of urgent need to go to the toilet with loose stools. Ugh.

As far as the hemorrhoids, he perked up and said they had a somewhat newer procedure that they could do called Transanal Hemorrhoidal Dearterialization (THD for short). He described it to me and I looked at pictures later on. Basically it is a combination of using a device that detects blood flow using sound, and then the doctor uses sutures to close off the blood flow so the sound stops. Then the doctor uses more sutures to raise the distended tissue up to where it is supposed to to. There is no cutting, and so, the idea is that there is less recovery pain and downtime. Or as one site describes it: “minimally invasive, minimal discomfort.” Wow, super — sign me up. 🤩

To be honest, I signed up for surgery several years earlier but chickened out of it sort of. 🐔 I was told they could fix my behind with surgery but it would be painful and the problem could return, and in rare cases, the surgery could cause the permanent inability to control bowel movements (incontinence). I still wanted to proceed and take that risk, but while I was waiting, I found out that I had to change my diet to control my glucose. And in doing that … I mean, there was a significant difference in movement and discomfort. So, I cancelled. Well, that change didn’t last for too long. And I regretted canceling the appointment. So, here it was — the opportunity to just get it all taken care of, and no big deal with this new surgery. The doctor said he does them frequently and the nurse said that other patients “love it.” Winner! The nurse gave me full instructions, including dietary restrictions and to take 4 Colace the day before surgery. Four!?!

Surgery Prep

I wasn’t really all that nervous about the surgery. You can die, of course, from any surgery that requires anesthesia, or any surgery in general can cause serious complications. But they seem to be rare these days, right? The hospital seemed to clear the procedure with my insurance, though I wasn’t totally clear on how much I might have to pay out of pocket, if any.

I asked if there was a pre-registration, and the discharge nurse said no, but then, a week before the day of the surgery, I did receive several phone calls trying to ask me for information. I called them back, and the nurse asked me lots of questions about my health and health habits, allergies, medications, history of conditions and other surgeries and anesthesia. They are very specific about the anesthesia, which is good to hear. It’s almost like a secondary operation, of sorts. The discharge nurse had given me instructions, and honestly, I couldn’t remember them, so this pre-op nurse went over the time, place and prep procedures.

She said I shouldn’t eat like 12 hours before, that I had to use an enema the morning of, an hour before coming in. And that I should drink clear liquids. She said not to take any blood thinners like aspirin for several days, and not to take my glucose med the morning of the surgery. It was set for 10:30 am Wednesday, be there 2 hours before.

I opted not to eat anything but sugar-free jello after midnight on Monday. And switched to non-red sugar-free Gatorade and water. The red coloring can be a problem, they’ve said before. So, yellow, green, blue are fine — nothing red. I was fine for half a day, but when it came time to go to my first class, my belly was rumbling so incredibly loudly while I studied in the library. I broke down and ate the inside of a chicken wrap for the sake of both myself and my classmates so we were not having to deal with my very, very loud belly noises. It was fine, she said not to eat anything for a day or so. It wasn’t colonoscopy prep. I got home and took two Colace. Four would have been ridiculous.

In the morning, I couldn’t get up because I’d stayed up too late. And I was dead tired. He came and tried to tell me to get up twice, but I didn’t budge. It was getting near to 7:30 am, and I was supposed to be there at 8:30 am. I hate to be late for important things like this. So, I did the Fleet and all nice an clean. Why not — no food? I took a quick shower and we were on our way!

Check In at the Hospital

🏥 The university hospital that I’ve gone to for more than 20 years is very nice — not perfect, but nice in that the facilities are new and clean, and everyone is professional and prepared and energized. The staff is always very diverse. (I mention people’s appearance and ethnicity herein, not as a judgement or assessment, but as an observation of personal interest in different kinds of people working together.) They had a self-check-in computer kiosk where I had to agree to a lot of fine print. It was too much to read, honestly. I didn’t like that part — standing there with the next person behind, wondering WTH is taking so long. It was 8:30 am — two hours to go.

We went to the admin desk for the first check in, then to another desk for the insurance and confirmation check in, then to the surgery check-in desk to call for the surgery center to come get me. A coordinator came around soon enough, and she gathered several patients and their family members together. We crowded into an elevator and went up one floor where we were led to our individual beds. The coordinator spoke with one of the elderly women patients, and the coordinator rushed back saying she lost the woman’s daughter along the way.

A nice nurse came over immediately and introduced herself — I think she was Korean. I think most of the nurses were of various far East origins. Not all, but a noticeable number. It is similar at heir other surgical center. My nurse explained how to get dressed. They had fancy new, blue, paper gowns, with what seemed like front pockets or a pouch; and the “garment” also had some kind of plastic and cardboard access holes built into the backwards gown that looked like vacuum cleaner bag attachment holes. Anyway, I got dressed and into the bed, naked as a jay bird, except for the paper-plastic gown and a thin blanket.

👩‍⚕️ The nurse came back and gave me a blood pressure cuff on my left arm, an O2 meter on my right index finger, and an IV on the top of my right hand. She then put a pair of green pressure cuffs on my calves and said they were for the prevention of blood clots. They filled with air and deflated in an alternating pattern. All my vitals were good: oxygen around 97%, BP around 115/75, glucose: 75 g/mL. Insanely normal and healthy human being. She asked about allergies and gave me a red wrist band for penicillin and ibuprofen.

There were several other patients there getting ready: An Hispanic woman who couldn’t speak English with her daughter. A doctor came in to ask her questions, and explain what was going to happen. His Spanish was better than mine, but his pronunciation was obviously not native. Across from me was an older white fella, and he seemed to be complaining loudly that he wanted some water, and why on earth would they send him into surgery dehydrated. An African-American, elderly lady was to my right. I can’t recall why she was there, but she was wheeled out and another patient came in her place. I have to tell ya — Every time the doctors asked if these patients had diabetes, the answer: “Yes.” Seriously, every single patient within earshot.

My doctor came by briefly and had me sign some papers. I barely recognized him — younger with a 2-letter Chinese name like me, though I would have guessed his parents were southeast Asian instead. The anesthesiologist came by and some assistant doctors, nurses and an assisting student. They all were very reassuring and asked the right questions about health issues and allergies, again, and looked at my identification tags many times. They asked twice why I was there. The anesthesiologist asked if I had any problems before with anesthetics, or with any of the pain medications. I said, “No, not that I could remember.” The only other, you know, “invasive” surgery I had was for an inguinal hernia, and I did kind of pass out at home afterward. Pretty sure that was the meds.

I was told not to take it easy for a few days — not to lift anything heavy, not to exercise, and no sex…. Meaning anal sex. Haha! Uh, no problem following that order: No interesante. 🍆💦🚫 My partner stayed with me and took all of my belongings other than my clothes, which were placed in two large plastic bags and put in a locker. He kept asking me if I wanted him to get me anything from Whole Foods across the street. And I was like, “I don’t think I’m going to want anything from there that would be solid.” I think he was getting antsy and hungry, and it wasn’t about me at all. We were told by the staff that they were waiting for a operating room to open up.

Around 10:30 am, there was a sudden rush of activity with staff and all of the patients around us. The doctors came and told us to say our goodbyes — he gave me a hug and a kiss; always awkward around people we don’t know. And then the team wheeled me down to the operating room. One grabbed a hairnet before we entered. I was wearing one, too, even though my head is shaved to the nub. It was a familiar setting to me, but there was a second table next to me. I really don’t remember getting on it or off the wheelie table. The anesthesiologist was there, and he asked me to scoot up and put my head back. He said they would put a tube in my mouth to control my breathing and that I would have some sore throat later on. And he had asked if I was okay with all of that. Indeed. I think I mistook the earlier “sedation” I had gone through before for “general anesthesia,” though. The anesthesiologist said that he was putting in some thing and it would sedate me and it would burn a little bit so not to be alarmed. Some heat entered my hand and arm, and …. ?.

Recovery Room After the Surgery

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 5 😖😖😖😖😖

😴 I woke up sometime later, I don’t really know when. I was in the recovery room. Pretty groggy and not too able to speak up loud enough. I think I had a white female nurse who was helping me to get situated and explained what had happened. And as she was telling me, I noticed I was wearing mesh underwear and nothing else — haha. So, there’s no ability to be body conscious or shy at the hospital, especially when you are unconscious. My behind was sore. And she said I had gauze back there, and maybe some gauze inside there. Oh, I just remembered — when I woke up, I was shaking. My whole body was shaking like freaky. I don’t mean quivering or shivering. I mean, my whole body was convulsing. The nurse said it was from the anesthesia. It was troubling, but wore off after a while.

Her shift was ending, so an African-American male nurse came by, and took over everything. He was asking how I was, what my pain level was (1-10) and said I had to pee before I could leave. He fed me several bottles of water, and a plastic urinal. I tried several times while lying there, half propped up in bed; but couldn’t pee but a few drops. The nurse said he’d come back. I heard him chatting with someone from the ER who said he should come work with them, and he sounded enthused and said he could do all type of internal surgeries. You could tell he, and all of the staff, did this type of work every day and had plenty of decent training. They all seemed smart and caring. I asked him if they did surgeries all day or just in the morning, and he said all day till 5 pm. He suggested that I get up and walk to the bathroom to let gravity help me pee. I was all for it, but really, I could not pee in the bed. It’s just too weird, with a whole bunch of people all around. He unhooked all of my many wires, and as a wobbly free man, I made plenty of pee.

I can’t recall too well all of the details, or the order of events. My partner must have come up and checked in with me at some point. They gave us the full recovery run down again. They told me again that I shouldn’t do any heavy activities, and shouldn’t drive while on the pain pills. No sex, again. They said I needed to take a Colace stool softener every time I took a pain pill. I said I had a class in the morning, and they told me that driving and class wasn’t advisable. “You can have a doctor’s note, right?”

I could hear them saying to call my partner to get the car ready. It took a while, but they had someone wheel me to the edge of the ward for transport out to the cars. Well, this is the only negative about my entire time there. 👨‍🦽 I sat there for the better part of an hour. They forgot me. Really, I was just sitting there. And I was feeling super nauseated. Like, I was wondering what I could throw up into. Nobody was paying any attention to me, and I was feeling panicky and sick and a little angry. I couldn’t really get up on my own to ask; but I thought I might have to do it anyway. I saw the desk nurse behind me and she was coordinating other people I wondered what my partner must be thinking. Surely, he’s been sitting down there for an hour wondering WTF is going on. I heard the desk nurse answer the phone and could tell it was my partner saying just that. She was like, “Ohhh, he’s ready. And you’re downstairs? Let me get someone to bring him out.” I was so ready to puke by the time he got me in the car. He was mad, but I was just like, “Take me straight home. I cannot care about this.” 😩

At Home After Effects of the Surgery

Day 1

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 6 😖😖😖😖😖😖

It was around 3:30 when we got home. He led me inside and up the front stair to our condo. I just dropped every thing on the floor and headed to the toilet on my knees. 🤢🤮🚽 I wretched a bunch of times, but the truth is, nothing at all came out. That’s nice to have an empty stomach at least, but I couldn’t understand why I was so nauseated. They had told me it might happen because of the anesthesia or the pain. Checked my glucose and it was up to 125 mg/dL — no food, just stress.

I just straight to bed, but only for a couple of hours. I had not slept well for the past few weeks with the new school schedule, work and figuring out how to handle this. When I got up, I ate a little bit of food. My partner was being incredibly nice, and he had gone to the store and bought a bunch of food, and my meds. He bought more Colace and said he had to go to different pharmacies to get the prescription for Percocet. The bottle says Oxycodone HCL. And I don’t know what the difference was, but I was wary of it. He had been on morphine after one of his surgeries, and he was loopy at first, but then cranky and he itched all over. After all of the opioid addition horror stories that have been in the news, I just wanted to stick to Tylenol. He convinced me to take half a pain pill. So, I did. 💊

I ate a little food, and sat down at the desk onto the gauze shoved up my butt crack. It wasn’t comfortable, but oh well. I imagined it was bleeding, but I didn’t really know this point. Within a half hour, I was feeling nauseated again. 🤮 It just welled up out of nowhere. My partner was upset, because he blamed the meds he had use made a huge effort to retrieve for me. And I couldn’t say yes or no. It went away after an hour or so, but I felt pretty pukey before it did. My behind was sore, so very, very sore. My partner and my mom kept telling me not to go to school, but I was insistent and said I would go but only long enough to take the test. I ate some mixed nuts that I had, including cashews. I was like, “Whatever happens, happens around this time tomorrow.” I really should have reconsidered the cashews, specifically, because they almost always give me bad poo. I studied the rest of the night, sitting at my desk on my sore butt. I went and got gas for my car around 3am and came home and went to bed.

Day 2

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 10+ 😖😖😖😖😖😖😖😖😖😖

I got up and took a shower and gathered minimal books to take to school. As I headed out the door, feeling relatively confident, I realized walking was going to be a problem. I was sure that I must look funny as I moved about.

I was low on time for class, even though I was skipping the lecture. I got to campus and walked up hill — ouch. And got to class where I waited for the professor. Everyone came up after class and they were studying and seemed less confident than I was that they knew what was on the test. It was a combination of vocabulary, technique, and observation of bacterial cultures. I got tripped up a few times, reading the questions wrong. My behind was behaving surprisingly well. I finished the test and headed home for the weekend. Called my mom and was pretty confident that recovery would be pretty easy.

Wrong. So wrong.

Around 6pm, after I got home — thank god! — I started to have my first bowel movement. I had no idea what to expect. Blood, pain, poo — no idea. But clearly something new was happening.

It felt horrible. HORRIBLE! It was like the worst diarrhea heaves ever. My colon was spazzing out and my gut was bearing down as hard as it could to push something out. And all that came out was some mucus with some blood in it.

And then it happened again. And like gross brown ick just kept coming out in little drips. I had to keep wiping and wiping. And every thing made my colon constrict and spazz and burn. And my gut kept bearing down like it wanted to give birth to the devil. I was freaking out. I grabbed the leftover Fleet and put it up there, thinking there must be some huge constipated rock in there. And I need to use this thing to wash it out. Well, just a whole bunch of drippy, water poo and one tiny little stool came out. Cleaning up was a mess, wiping and wiping. I sat on the top edge and splashed warm water on. It felt better.

After that, it kept happening over and over and over. I was running to the bathroom like every 4 to 10 minutes. But all that would come out was a little blob of diarrhea. It felt like a mountain was going to come out, and this glob of yuck is all I would get. I could not understand what wash happening. My partner came home and tried to console me, but I was in sooooo much pain. Insane amount of pain. And it felt like I had to rush to the toilet again and again.

Eventually, I just stopped going to the toilet because nothing significant was coming out. I tried to lay down, but every time I did, it was an urgent burn to get up again. I was packing my crack with toilet paper and tissues, and I was leaking these drippy poos. So, awful. I really had lost control. I couldn’t squeeze to hold it in, because it was so incredibly painful. There was no blood after the first mucous, just this little bit of diarrhea.

As far as food, I think all I ate was a little bit of over cooked broccoli and some overcooked green beans.

I opted to sit at my desk on my behind and just see if I could sleep sitting up, or hunched over some pillows on my desk. My neck disagreed with that plan. And my rectum kept spazzing over and over and over and over and over. It was dreadfully painful. I finally figured out that:

  • There’s nothing stuck up in in there.
  • Each little blob of diarrhea was triggering an involuntary response.
  • And the response was for me butthole to try and close up to stop the escape.
  • So, it was seizing all the way down my rectum in stages, for every drop, every 3.5 to. 9 minutes.
  • As long as I stayed sitting down, nothing would escape and the pain was at least not going to be as excruciating as if I kept moving around.

I tried again to sleep, but the waves of pain were so terrifically awful. I finally broke down and just cried from all of the stress and exhaustion. I was so worried about school. I had to drop out last year because of the GI bleed. And I’m not made of money — $1,000 per class now. I couldn’t drop out. I couldn’t go to school. Not like this! What am I to do? Why is my life so hard?!?!? I just want to go to school and get a good job and be healthy enough to handle any work situation. I was trying to fix a problem, so I wouldn’t have to worry about it. But here I am, in the worst pain of my whole life, unable to sleep or stay awake, and unable to control what comes out of my behind. Even if I had some Depends adult diapers, how on Earth would I get through classes on Tuesday. Woe is me. 🚼😱

Day 3

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 8 😖😖 😖😖😖😖😖😖

It’s about 40 hours later. It still hurts plenty. But not nearly as much as earlier yesterday. I’m so happy I made it to school and home before all that pain started.

I pushed my mattress against the wall and tried to sleep sitting up, but the best I could do was to lean over a whole bunch of pillows. The diarrhea slowed down, and the spasms in kind also slowed down their frequency. It really is like, every drop, every gas bubble — it is causing my rectum to spasm because naturally, my anus’ job is to keep it in. I can’t squeeze. It hurts. Can’t cough. Can’t walk around.

I did have a couple of actual bowel moments that weren’t all liquid. Still soft, probably the Colace. But in an unexpected, strange way — the stool is way easier to pass than the drip after drip of diarrhea. I thought it would be terrible, but nope. It’s fine. As long as I don’t move around and don’t have any gas or diarrhea, it’s so much better right now. I mean, it still hurts, but the comparison between when it wouldn’t stop last night and occasional spasms tonight is such a relief.

I still do not see me going to school all day Tuesday, but I’m hopeful. I really do have a test, then two labs. And a whole lot of homework due by Sunday and Monday before that. I’m not going to get it all done now. Too bad. I hate bad grades more than anything. I used to be a lousy student for family reasons beyond my control, but I’ve been nearly an all-A student in adulthood. I hate to get a B for any reason, but if that’s the way it happens. Then, oh well.

Going to put this down and try to read and get some of these tasks done. I’m sitting on a pillow at my desk. My behind is sore, but tolerable. Occasionally, it does spasm for 30 seconds just like last night, but it’s like once an hour now; or when I walk around. I’m trying not to move. I ate some Atkins protein bars, and some turkey, and broccoli today. i need to stop now, I think. I would love to have a decent meal though. I ate a lot of sugar-free jello; I think that’s free food, though.

My partner got me some low-carb Enlighten ice cream. I was wary of it. 1) It claim 1 g “net carbs” per serving. 11 g of carbs – 2 grams of fiber = not 1 gram of “net carbs.” I read the ingredients. I expected it to say it had inulin fiber in it (chickory root). I did not, but had something like “soluble corn fiber” instead. That chickory root is the same thing in the fart monstrosity Fiber One products. Disgusting. They put it in a lot of low-carb foods for — i dunno. Texture? It upsets the belly so much. Anyway, I ate some of the ice cream and I got a little gurgly but otherwise seem alright.

Hope for me that I get healed up quick and am not incontinent at then end of this process. That nurse swore “People love it.” Last night, I thought I had made the worst mistake of my life. At this moment, it is unpleasant, but bearable if it heals and I am better off in a couple of weeks.

Day 5

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 6 😖😖😖😖😖😖

I lost the Day 4 entry somehow, but nothing particularly eventful happened.

Today was actually more painful than yesterday — physically and emotionally.

First, I goofed up my deadlines for Chemistry class, but I told the professor before hand that I would not be submitting a bunch of stuff, partly because of the surgery. It wasn’t an excuse, but just an explanation. I said I do not want to drop the class, especially since I had to last year, and even moreso because there’s no refund. Really, I need to get cracking and study all every minute till I get caught up. More deadlines coming. The only thing is, the OpenStax book we are using jumped from basic atoms and nomenclature ⚛️ right in to wavelengths and quantum mechanics. It was too much to squeeze in.

As far as my behind has been, squeezing is not something I enjoy whatsoever. I am not leaking dribbly poo anymore. It is more normal stool. I took a Colace today, and had been drinking sugar-free Citrucel-type fiber before that. Definitely not ready for any hard, solid anything to come out of there.

IT HURTS! I swear, when is this going to let up? All day long it kind of burns; feels like the worst hemorrhoid ever bulging out. But it isn’t bulging, that’s the point. I can feel that there is several things in a row that he must’ve stitched together on the left side. I say “feel” — not with my finger, but when anything comes out.

Sometimes, randomly, especially yesterday, it would just sieze up with this searing pain. Like a blade had been shoved up there. Ugh, just did it again. It is random and will sit me up straight and bulge my eyes out, for sure, when it happens. I have to go to class all day Tuesday. It’s Monday morning. I’m not ready, but I have no choice.

‘After a bowel movement — and during the movement, of course — it really is still significantly painful. 😞😡 It feels like something angry is just bulging in there and doesn’t like being touched. And then after it come out, the pain just lingers — like a stubbed toe or when you accidentally bump your head. It’s that intense, but in my butt. Sitting now, it feels lousy — kind of like the sore area is being pulled, almost torn. Youch!

I thought it would feel better by now. I mean, in perspective, it is way better than those first couple of days. But I was expecting it to feel like it was healing. And I’m not soiling tissues up my crack. Thank goodness. But I thought yesterday, it was starting to itch, like it was genuinely healing. But all day today, it felt like it hadn’t killed off the problem arteries yet.

I have no idea what to expect going forward — more pain and some embarrassment, no doubt. But beyond that, I don’t know. It is difficult to walk. Difficult to stand up and sit. Difficult to shift around in the bed. Difficult to hold any kind of weight. When I feel like a gas bubble is coming, I cannot tell if that’s all that will escape. It’s kind of horrifying to think I might have a audible or odorous incident tomorrow. I have our first big test coming. And I just have to get it done. As far as that Chemistry class — dropping is not much of an option. I could audit it, but then I’d have to pay another $1,000 dollars and cram it in during the summer. I don’t have much options, because if I let it go, then that adds another entire year delay to my degree — just this one class. I have my mind made up to fix this, but another part of me is not so sure.

I just want this to be over ASAP. And for me to get my life back. That’s all. Not too much to expect, is it?

Day 6-7 

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 4 😖😖😖😖

I went to school and took my test very quickly. 🏃‍♂️ I hope to get an A, but I rushed through it and was the first done and out of there. I was nervous because of my behind annoying me, and I did study enough that most of the questions were pretty obvious. And, honestly, I rarely ever get to be that first annoying person who’s done before everyone else, so I wanted to try it once…. Just checked online: It looks like I got 72 out of 80 — so, 90%. I’ll take it.

I finished my two labs after that. A couple of students next to me didn’t show. I think they did not do so good on the test. (Sorry folks.) I had a couple of times I needed to try to go to the loo, but nothing too significant painwise because I did not eat all day before, just because so I wouldn’t have to deal with it. All of this fasting, and somehow I haven’t lost a pound of fat.

Anyway, I slept all day yesterday to catch up on rest. And then I ate too much. And I had to go to sit on the twah’let a bunch of times. TMI, sorry. But that’s what this is: Journal of My Butt. The pain was less. Still very much hurts, but less so. And by this morning, beginning of Day 8, it is starting to itch. And while that’s no joy, I think that it will be a sign of healing if it continues. Which is what I need right now. Because I can’t be doing any karate chops to get some gas and cheese when the Coronavirus Panic of 2020 actually happens.

Day 8-14 

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 6 😖😖😖😖😖😖

Honestly, the last few days has really gotten me down. It hurt all day long, and it was really difficult knowing when I had to go to the loo. All I had was more pain or less pain. And I was trying to find a way to make it more comfortable to sit on the rim of the toilet and not feel like I was having a total prolapse of my innards. In reality, that’s a huge exaggeration, but it definitely felt so awful. Especially this last time. On Monday, I must’ve eaten something bad, and pretty much every thing came out of my belly, and then Tuesday was not great at school, but no need to go to the bathroom while in class. I was miserable, though. And by Wednesday morning, nothing was coming out but I kept trying. I took a Colace and some Miralax earlier. but eventually, I just went to the CVS and got some store-brand Fleets. And half of an agonizing bottle later, and it all got out of there. I couldn’t study. I just laid in bed all day. I’m really behind on school, which is terrible. Not a lot I can do about it. 

Day 15

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 3 😖😖😖

😢 Well, the day started out terrible, mood wise. I just got sadder and sadder. And by the time I got to the parking lot at school, I was wondering what the point of life is. Really, that bad! I had taken Tylenol and allergy pill and whatever else I needed to. And I forced myself to get out of the car and go to class. I missed lecture on Tuesday for the 2nd time, and I can’t miss any more. I never ever miss classes. This semester has been rough to say the least. Well, I was out of it — just sitting there like a zombie, trying not to cry anymore. I have no idea what the professor was saying. I was texting my partner and just zoning out. At the end of class, one of the other students was asking me about studying together, and it made me feel a little better. I don’t think I have time to study at the moment with her, but she wants to pass this Microbiology with a better grade than she started with. And we went up and did our labs and it was super interesting — yeast, fungus and mold slides. They are very pretty — deadly, but pretty to look at when they are stained and in a microscope. By the end of class, after working with some other people, and maybe the Tylenol kicked in, I felt a lot better. The fog and doom and gloom had lifted. And my behind hurt a whole lot less, too.

Day 16

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 4 😖😖😖😖

Going to the doctor today for a follow-up appointment. Going to be a challenge preparing. Oh, well….

🩺 The doctor didn’t have much to say. I rode a bike down there and back. Probably not the best idea. And even worse idea apparently was to flush everything out of there before going, because the doctor was like, “You did what? Don’t do that. I don’t want to mess with the sutures. And I’m not going there today. But it looks good from the outside.” I told him it bled a few times, and that it hurt horribly the whole first week and still hurts, but was better. He seemed surprise at my pain level. But just said to come back in 2 weeks. He’d give me a “relaxant” for the pain. I was like 😒. He said I should use ibuprofen, and I told him it gives me hives. He said I could use Gabapentin and then a bunch of other drugs. I think I’ll stick with Tylenol, something I trust. I was late for the appointment, too, because I had so much trouble clearing out needlessly, and then the bike service seems to have been bought up by Lyft, and I couldn’t log into the app anymore. 🥗 I had some Whole Foods steak and salad bar stuff for lunch. It was really good, and a couple small tuna fish wraps for supper with some almonds. I ate too much chocolate. My A1c is going to be terrible next month. I tried to do some exercises while watching Chemistry lectures, but it started to hurt back there, and I just gave up. It’s going to be a long day today at school studying. I want to get some more “coronavirus supplies” at 6 AM.  Tried to sleep but couldn’t stay asleep. Just had a movement and it was not — well, some blood 🩸 in there and what looked like a dark clot or clump. It itches, too, more than hurts now. That probably will be good. Wish it would stop bleeding. Going to be sleepy today, cat is laying on My chest and purring, will try again since I can’t move. 🐈💤

1 Month After — Conclusion (Early)

Pain Scale 1 to 10: 2 😖😖

The calendar suggests that it’s been about a month. I was supposed to go in for a 2nd follow-up, but all the doctors and dentists have canceled their appointments because of coronavirus protections. 

It is much better than it was a couple of weeks ago. I have had some difficulty getting rid of some stool that was “too solid.” Very unpleasant, and mostly it has kind of been like saving up for one massive movement each day, especially if I skip the Colace. It hurts for a while before it comes out — and then, whoosh! Geezapeez. For the other 23 hours per day, I feel fine. Definitely eating too much because of nerves with all the bad news. But otherwise pretty much all right with the operation. 

There is still some mucous and blood, especially when it is “too solid.” It’s like it sits in there and presses on the  sutured spot. Anyway, it’s nothing near where I was after this started.

I got the bill from the hospital, and without insurance the costs would have been an insane $32,000 or thereabouts. I don’t want to be thankful for insurance, because I think the entire pricing scheme is a horrible scam, but I would not want to try navigating our health system without it. Really astonishing what the hospitals claim for charges. Ex. $69 for a single glucose fingerstick. That should not have cost more than $1. It’s 18 cents with a Walmart glucometer. Like I said, insane pricing scam to scare us all into buying into “the system.” 

All right, going to put this journal to rest unless something else happens. Thanks for reading along. Hope your operation goes well, or your decision not to have this operation is the right one for you. It was terrible getting passed the first couple of weeks, but it did settle down eventually. I’m not sure it is a 100% success since there is still some blood coming out, but I am still hopeful that i will do whatever it was designed to. Take care. 

Hold on! — FAILURE

I was ready to let this post go, and be happy enough that it stopped hurting. But I can feel it the past couple of days. Had to go to the bathroom a lot. I don’t know why, but it started to sting again. And I took a shower just now, and felt around.

It’s back. Tender bulge. Not the same as before, but clearly we have a failure. All of that time and money and pain and effort. And here it comes right back. I hate it so much. 

We are right now in the middle of the Coronavirus pandemic — or maybe the beginning, and that’s already got me down. I haven’t been exercising a lot in the past many weeks since the operation. I think the first post here was on February 24. It is now April 1. Maybe I did something wrong. I was straining a lot, mostly because it was so painful. I don’t know. But it is not a success — not at all from what I can tell. It just seems to be slipping back down to where it was. Very disappointing. Right now, I cannot care. 

To be honest, it was nice after the first 3 and a half weeks — not having all the tenderness and random bleeding. I’m afraid it’s just going to go back where we started in another few days. Clearly the artery was not destroyed, and I never thought it had been, otherwise, there would not have been any bleeding like it was. Maybe it helped some inside. I have a follow up appointment in a few days. It was postponed because of the virus. Literally every thing is shut down except essential services. I don’t know if butt doctor is essential. I know this is a failure. Oh, well. Maybe I’ll try something else in the future. But this THD definitely did not work.

FYI: TV News video explanation — way too simplified as far as pain and recovery of procedures in my opinion:

FYI: Video example of the surgery NSFW

JD Uyhttps://www.jduy.com
Hello, I am the owner and administrator of this site and bulletin board.

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