Surgical Escapades

Posted by on September 7, 2008 at 8:37 pm :: 6 Comments

Well it has been nearly two weeks since I got peroneal tendon surgery. The recovery process has been an interesting and somewhat trying experience for me. The days since my surgery have been a rather miserable blur. I spend enormous amounts of energy doing practically nothing. It has definitely been interesting.

As I was preparing for this surgery I wanted to know what I should expect but I had a hard time finding firsthand information, so I will give my account and put it out in the great void in hopes that it may be of use to someone else that may be preparing for a similar event. My daily routines have been completely altered by surgery. The changes surgery has necessitated in my daily activities have overshadowed everything else in my life. So I will therefore have to devote more than one post to this event and its aftereffects.

Since surgery started this whole mess I will begin with that.

Me before surgery. Don't I look excited?

Me before surgery. Don't I look excited?

I went to the Central Utah Surgical Center early in the morning the day of my surgery. I was very impressed with the staff at this facility.They were prompt and the nurses were very understanding and considerate.

I did, unfortunately, have to wear a silly hospital gown with an embarrassingly large slit up the side and openings for heart monitoring equipment in less than optimal places for us ladies.

But I was thrilled that I actually got to wear my panties during this procedure. This may seem like a silly thing to be excited about but it kept the embarrassment at a minimum. I didn’t have to worry about everything hanging out, and that made me happy.

Before surgery-I still look alert.

Before surgery-I still look alert.

Once I had checked in at the facility everything happened very quickly. I was only in the waiting room for a couple minutes before I was taken back and prepped for surgery.

I was told to write "yes" on the right spot.

I was told to write "yes" on the right spot.

I soon found myself on a gurney in route to the operating room with an IV in place and several doctors in tow. Once in the operating room I was transferred to the operating table (despite the name it was surprisingly comfortable). Then the anesthesiologist told me he was going to start pumping the juices and only a few seconds later I was out. I woke up in the recovery room. Keeping my eyes open seemed, at first, a nearly impossible task. As I regained awareness I realized that I was shivering cold and that my throat was incredibly dry. I didn’t know this at the time, but apparently it is common for patients to be in shock when they wake up after surgery, hence the shivering. They hooked up a heating system to my bed and I was feeling warm in no time. The dry throat, I found out, was caused by the breathing tube they put down your throat when they have you under anesthesia.

15 or 20 minutes after waking up

15 or 20 minutes after waking up

I learned from Jason when he was called back to be with me in the recovery room, that for some reason, it took me fifty minutes longer to wake up than anticipated.I guess that’s not terribly surprising considering how much I hate waking up in the morning.

That's one huge cast!

That's one huge cast!

After half an hour of proving that I really was awake and functioning, IV removing, and figuring out how to use crutches I was in my way home loaded up with Percocet and wearing my knee-high purple cast, that I not-so-lovingly refer to as the purple herman.

My doctor spoke to Jason while I was still unconscious about the outcome of my surgery. Apparently it went well and my ankle should be as good as new in six months.

My tendon was much more damaged than anticipated. My peroneus brevis was torn completely in half longitudinally from the top of my ankle bone to my fifth metatarsal. Since I am still wearing my cast, I can’t see my wound, but Jason and I estimate that this is roughly a four or five inch tear. A few portions of my tendon had also frayed. These frays had to be removed. The doctor said, considering the poor condition of my peroneus brevis, it almost certainly would have ruptured had I not had the surgery. My peroneus longus tendon, which originally was believed to be the damaged tendon, was “pristine” as the doctor put it. So it required no surgical intervention.

This is a very lovely picture of me at home the day of my surgery.

This is a very lovely picture of me at home the day of my surgery.

That was my surgery in a nutshell. The first few days afterwards I spent all my time in bed. This was per the doctor’s orders, but thanks to pain, drugs, and swelling, there’s no way I would have been able to go anywhere anyway. Trips just a few feet to the bathroom were difficult enough, trying to use crutches while being on heavy-duty pain killers was an unsettling experience. But crutches, and all the fun they entail, will be the subject of my next post.

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