Sunday, October 29, 2023

The Miracle.

 Last night when Tim went to bed, I was quite worried about him. He was shivering violently (not feverish). He was shakey and in terrible shoulder pain from the CO2 gas. 

The doctor was very clear: he did not want to hear from us unless Tim began running a fever of 101.1 or higher, or if he suddenly began throwing up to the point that he could no longer keep liquids down. 

That just left such a large expanse of gray area. He wasn't eating. He was drinking a lot of fluids. He was trying to walk off the pain, but it wasn't helping. Google advised motion, walking, and icing the shoulder. We were doing all those things, yet 24 hours later, he was still in pretty serious agony, and I didn't know what to do about that. 

At about midnight, I was considering waking up my sister, the nurse, but took one more chance on Dr. Google, and there, I found (contrary to everything else that I had read over and over and over throughout the day) a doubtful sounding bit of advice: "Perhaps heat might help." 

I figured that we had tried everything else. If he woke up one more time, I would give it a try. 

He woke up again. 

I went into the bedroom and told him my latest reading. "Try it," he gasped. We got the heating pad situated with difficulty because he couldn't bear being jostled around. Finally I got it under that shoulder. I turned it on and got him tucked back in again and tiptoed back out of the room. 

After an hour, he had not woken up, and so I tiptoed back in and put myself to bed. He woke up a little, and I asked him about his shoulder. Miraculously, the pain was gone. Completely. 

We both slept better for that. 

The shoulder pain has not reoccurred. He has other pain, of course, but all of it is bearable. Well, except for watching his football team lose. That degree of pain could not be managed by tylenol extra strength. 

He has a bit more appetite. He's still doing well on the fluids. He even shaved today!



51 comments:

  1. sometimes or medical system leaves much to be desired. "Don't call me" is terrible.

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    1. It seems like there should be an oncall person that you can call with additional questions once you get home.

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  2. Oh my gosh! That's terrific! I do often get advice from WebMD or whatever too. Sometimes I'll ask my doctor something in his office and he'll look it up on line. LOL.

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    1. I could hardly believe when he said the pain was gone, completely gone. That brought tears to my eyes. It had been a pretty stressful day.

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  3. Glad to hear the shoulder pain is gone and Tim's still doing well with fluids. Takes a bit for one's appetite to kick back in after surgery, especially one that's causing a significant amount of post-op pain.
    Slow & steady wins the race. Be kind to yourself, Debby.

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    1. I was just so afraid that I'd wind up taking him to the ER and hear that I'd missed something vital and should have known better. Argh.

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  4. Sometimes Dr. Google can save the day! Thank God it worked!

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    1. In this case, he did, but I googled all day long and got the same advice over and over again. I was surprised to find something different.

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  5. Goodness- that was a pretty harsh message from the doctor! I’m so glad you were able to alleviate the pain by googling, but I wish there was a better way to help you out! I’m glad Tim’s drinking lot of fluids- I think we can all get away with not eating for a few days, but fluids are vital! Sending hugs and good wishes..XO, Ricki

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    1. He's doing better today. His appetite is better. I really am glad that I don't have to argue with him about the fluids. He's also doing a lot of walking around the house. Tomorrow, we'll try a shower.

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  6. What works is what works even if it comes from the anonymity of the internet. I am so glad that the heat could make it feel better for him.
    I won't go into a tirade about how doctors so often leave us without resource. I will just say that I am glad Tim is better.

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    1. If it had not been so late at night, I would have called my sister. She and her husband stopped in today. She was pretty unhappy that I hadn't called.

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  7. I will second Ms M's notion. And go fill a hot water bottle for my sniffling aching man-child; who knows, it might help him feel better too.

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    1. LOL. My man-child, from the depths of his misery, looked up at me with wide sad eyes and said, "Does this mean I can buy a truck?'

      I looked at him tenderly and said, "No. No it does not."

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  8. It is a shame you were not given better post procedure instructions and support but you managed to find an answer. Hope Tim is feeling better today.

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    1. It is kind of the way it is here. I want to be clear that everyone was very kind, but the simple fact of it is that we were dealing with something we hadn't dealt with before. I asked all the questions I had. Tim was too woozy to really have any questions. It wasn't until we got home and ran into difficulty that we had more questions. Within hours a blood clot had clogged the tubing. We changed everything, but it was scary because we were not sure whether that fell into the area of 'to be expected'. It made me terrible that he was in so much pain. How much pain falls into that area of 'to be expected'. Tim is a very stoic fellow, so neither of us had dealt with this before. Scary. Scary. Scary.

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  9. All good news! I am trying to catch up with you. So much has gone on in your life! Continuing prayers for you and Tim, and hoping there will be calmer waters ahead for you both.

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    1. It seems to be smoother sailing every day. The weekend is surely nothing I care to repeat.

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  10. I am SO glad that the hot pad helped. Sometimes works for Keith's neck pain too, but not always. What a waste of rations that Dr was - obviously you are going to have queries as things happen post-op. Thank heavens you managed without him. I would think, I'm paying you mate, I'll call the tune here.

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    1. They did call this morning. We did not get to the phone in time.

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  11. Have had all that. What the doctor said sounds right (it was dehydration that got me readmitted), but if heat works that's good, but be aware of the possibility of overheating while asleep.

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    1. Once the pain was gone, he cautiously removed the heating pad. Has not used it since.

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  12. It must be such a relief that the pain has subsided. That feeling of helplessness when you just don't know what to do is truly awful.

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  13. That is a hard system. I don't know about other places, but our District Nurse, Specialist Nurse, Doctor and Pharmacist all say Any queries or worries, call...as less stress, quicker mending.

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    1. It really does seem sensible that if the doctordoesn't want to be bothered, a visiting nurse would visit. At the very least make a call.

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  14. Some more thoughts (but only from my own experience; I am not medically qualified).
    Shivering can be due to low blood sugar. I found a glass of orange juice helped, maybe dilute, mayby luke warm) or other sugar dring but not too sugary.
    If on steroids, then they set it off for me. I think this is also because they affect blood sugars. You have to put up with it, and it stops with the steroids.
    Not time yet to worry about not eating. He probably will when ready. It can lead to painful constipation but that also should resolve itself over a few days.
    Keep positive. It sounds like you are both doing really well.

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    1. In hindsight, I imagine you are right. He had not eaten for nearly 2 days. That should have occurred to me. When I figured out that he was not cold and he did not have a fever, I immediately thought he was going into shock.

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  15. After surgery eating and bowel movements will be ... well you can guess the word. Time is the healer and don't expect healing to be fast.

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    1. Well, number two seems to have righted itself yesterday. That was a relief. How is your neck doing?

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  16. Glad to hear the heat pad moved the gas, that is a big pain in the shoulder, it really is. Gigi

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  17. Medical systems can be so impersonal. I feel like we get good care in the hospital or in the doctor's office, but otherwise it seems to be up to the patient to figure it out. All the best to you two.

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    1. Thankfully we are figuring it out. I had some doubts.

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  18. Glad you found a solution that worked but sorry your doctor was so unhelpful! Hopefully, each day will bring more relief for Tim. Slowly, but surely, he will be better soon.

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    1. He had a shower this morning. He feels a lot better for that.

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  19. You seem to be doing a great job caring for Tim. Keep it up Debby!

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    1. It is nerve wracking. Much respect to nurses.

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  20. I usually obtain from computers and the internet over the weekends to spend time with my kids so I was a bit confused with this post. Not sure how Tim got dosed with carbondioxide and how is shoulder hurts for a surgery near the prostate. I even went back and read the post I missed but it didn't clear things up. Regardless of my confusion, I'm glad to hear that he is doing much better and I hope he enjoys a full recovery and given an all clear sign from the biopsies.

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    1. They inflated his abdomen with co2 gas as part of the laparoscopic surgery.

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  21. It is absolutely terrifying to be the caregiver for someone after surgery when you have no medical experience and no idea what to look for and what to do. Even worse is having the surgery yourself and being sent home with someone who doesn't know what to do so really doesn't even try to help. The system is really messed up.

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  22. Amazing what you can do when push comes to shove.

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  23. We've had another problem pop up, a small inconvenient one, but really, the last thing the poor man needed was another issue.

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  24. Wow! Consider changing docs after first checking with their after-hours procedure. For sure, check in with your family nurse for questions. As my son said one time: every family should have a nurse in it! Yep, I had some gas put in for a surgery, and jeepers, the gas moving up to my chest made me think I was having a heart attack. Sometimes you can feel it by pushing on the skin and can feel and hear the crackles. Usually absorbed in a day or so. Hang in there. Maybe being friendly might earn Tim a new truck? Linda in Kansas

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  25. I'm so glad that heating pad worked!

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