Monday, August 11, 2008

I'm okay, for the most part, but somewhat traumatized

I went to see the plastic surgeon and he took one look at that area and he said it was definitely the expander. So, he had me lay back and asked if I could feel anything (no, there's no sensation there, I replied) and then he asked his nurse for some supplies. He then proceeded to drain the tissue expander, but he didn't really tell me that was what he was doing until I asked and I knew he did because I felt this warm moisture running down my side. Then, he felt around a bit and I could feel the pressure, he applied more pressure, but still didn't say what he was doing. I cried a bit (mostly because I didn't know what to expect and what he planned to do) and he asked if he was hurting me and I just said that I could feel the pressure and it was uncomfortable, but it didn't hurt. (You know, it's the kind of pressure you feel in the dentist's office when they're doing a root canal and you KNOW you should feel something, but you don't. Just the pressure.) Then, he yanked out the tissue expander.

I asked, "Did you already take it out?" and he said that yes, he did. As long as I couldn't feel anything, he could take it out as an outpatient procedure and we "saved half a day of prep and surgery". He said once the tissue expander was exposed, he had to take it out or risk infection.

Zip, bam, boom. All done. In the matter of about 15 minutes.

I'm still digesting it the whole experience.

In the meantime, he packed that open cavity with gauze to whisk away any moisture so that things don't get infected. He wants me to go back to the wound care clinic and have them pack that area with a "vac", or a vacuum wound pump which will keep whisking the moisture away.

In the meantime, the hole that the tissue expander poked through is still there and he didn't make it much larger by taking out the expander. I will still be able to see the radiation oncologist this afternoon and then my oncologist tomorrow. The plastic surgeon will see me tomorrow afternoon to change out the gauze.

He said if I felt up to it, I could take out the old gauze myself. I said I didn't think I was ready for that. I need some time to adjust to the whole situation.

Whew. I think I'll watch a feel-good movie and maybe color a mandala and just chill. My sis said Eddie can stay there all day and play if I need it. I may take her up on it.


jeanne said...

Oh, Dee. That was QUITE an experience with the PS; I can see why you are reeling! I will think positive "grow, tissue, grow!" thoughts and am hoping that things will proceed more smoothly from here on out. Be kind to yourself. Really kind to yourself, okay? nyc jeanne

Dee said...

Hi Jeanne,
I'm trying really hard to be kind to myself! But when I feel well, I want to go out and do normal stuff, but I tend to overdo it. And, yes, grow, tissue, grow! Hope you're doing well!