The surgery

This is the first surgery I have ever had. I hope it is the last. The operation went very well, and I was actually up and walking relatively soon, but I was in a lot of discomfort and not even morphine would not dull some of the pain.

Here’s what happened.

The Complementary Spouse and I arrived at St. Joseph’s Hospital at 5:30 a.m. on Thursday to find the check-in desk on the second floor deserted. There was a sign-up sheet on the desk, so I filled out my name and we went to the neighboring waiting room. Eventually, a short woman came by to get us, and led us to the pre-surgery area where I was asked to clean myself with premoistened sheets that smelled like Wet Ones and were as thick as Swiffer pads. I then put on my gown, and got into the hospital bed. A nurse came around to put in my IV, which she secured with approximately 50 pieces of tape. The anesthesiologist came by to visit, reassuring me that everything would be OK. The surgeon also stepped by to meet with me. Around this time, my parents arrived as well, so the room got crowded.

The anesthesiologist was named Dr. McCoy. I couldn’t resist making a Star Trek joke. I’m sure no one had made one before.

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My last appointment before surgery

I had to wear this during the entire appointment. I took it off before I went to work, as I’m sure I’ll get another one on Thursday.

It’s happening. It’s really, really happening. Today was my final appointment at St. Joe’s before my surgery next week. It wasn’t very scary. It started out, as most medical things do, with settling the bill. Then the Complementary Spouse and I spoke with a nurse, who reviewed my current medical information and told me what to do on Wednesday and where to go on Thursday.

I know that the nurse needed to cover everything, but one of the questions was really quite personal. After she asked if I had any kind of implants, like a pacemaker, she asked if I had a penile implant. Yup, she did (Footnote 1).

After that, the Complimentary Spouse was asked to wait in the lounge (Footnote 2), and I was taken to a large room to have blood drawn. I don’t like needles, but this was relatively painless. After that came an EKG.  Continue reading

I have a surgery date

After several months of hard work and waiting, I now have a date for my procedure: Thursday, Aug. 17.

My pre-surgery diet begins tomorrow. That means I’ll be drinking four protein shakes a day, and snacking on things like Jell-O and yogurt. I am kinda dreading this, but I know it’s a necessary step to prepare my body for surgery.

My surgeon said this morning that everything went well with all my tests, so the possibility for complications is low. In addition, I will not need to have my gall bladder removed.

Weigh-in update [u]

Things went very well with the nutritionist today. I may have a surgery date within a few days.

Update: I may have been too optimistic. The meeting did go well, but due to some scheduling issues I will have to wait about two weeks before I am assigned a surgery date.

I’m starting to lean the other way now

I have been doing a little research. The American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery has accredited Hospital XYZ and the two surgeons there. In addition, the hospital is considered a center of excellence for bariatric surgery.

Hospital ABC and the surgeon there do not appear to be accredited. This could be a game changer.

I have reached out to the program director at Hospital ABC to ask if the surgeon and the hospital are indeed accredited. If not, I will definitely go with Hospital XYZ despite a poor first impression.