Daily Archives: October 17, 2008

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I thought I only had two medical incidents scheduled for this month…

Category : medical

Obviously my appendix didn't agree with me and decided that it would be a good time to act up. On Wednesday morning my entire stomach hurt like crazy. I have a weak stomach, but am really unused to it hurting. Maybe the Molto Coldo jalepeno pizza really wasn't good for me! So I decide to buck up and go to work. So I head on in and start taking care of business at work.

I'm currently getting the Counselling and Testing image updated so I can go restore some machines we gave them a while back. They're old machines are working fine so it's been a low priority and I'm just now getting to it. I install the COMPASS testing software and am finishing up my e-mails when my stomach starts hurting more than it did before--which is quite a feat. So I decide to head home and lay down, hoping that it might be gas. I check in with my boss and head on out.

After an hour of laying in misery on my bed, I decide to head in to Physician's Immediate Care. These guys are pretty awesome (how could they not be, my friend Jenny works there) and get me in. Dr. Willey starts poking and prodding my stomach and finds what he thinks is pretty indicative of appendicitis. So he schedules me to come in five hours later to have an ultrasound to see if it really is what it appears to be. Marni gets off work and takes me in and after the ultrasound doc comes in (and Jenny gives me a hard time, funny girl that she is) it is confirmed...or at least insomuch as I am sent up to the ER to get a CT scan of the area.

So we head up to the ER. I'm always amazed by the ER. Most of the times I've gone to the ER for myself have been pretty non-threatening (except for one time that a stomach bug had severely dehydrated me and took me out of this world), so I could glance around and see the others waiting. I looked pretty normal, though I was often holding my stomach. But otherwise, I could have just been a guy in there with gas (which is what I was still hoping it was). There was a guy sitting with a rag wrapped around his fingers because he had mashed them horribly. There was another guy who had torn off part of his femur (he had gone to physician's immediate and they sent him immediately to the ER. So they get in and then they take me in.

I explain everything for what feels like the seventeenth time. The doctors found it strange that I had been diagnosed in the morning with an appendicitis and then told to wait for five hours for an ultrasound rather than boing ushered up to get it checked in the ER. Come to think of it, it was a little weird, but what do I know? I'm only the patient. I'm not supposed to know anything. Otherwise I'd have a medical degree.

The first thing they tell me that they're going to do is take some blood since that was not done at Physician's Immediate (something they found very strange as well) and then schedule a CT scan depending upon the feedback on my white count. So Marni heads to the bathroom and a very nice woman comes in and takes me away to the CT scan room where I'm put in a jet engine and have my abdomen scanned by science magics.

She takes me back and Marni was in the room wondering where I had gone. So I'm sitting there and two nurses come in to take my blood. I've never had a fear of needles or have I had anyone have difficulty finding my veins ever in my life. Until that moment. My IV arm is still bruised from where he was digging and my forehand still hurts from where he poked me for blood...and did not get any. Thinking that my other arm would be as uncooperative, he started digging around in it for a vein, but found it pretty easily after exerting entirely too much force and causing me a lot of pain. I've been poked and prodded before, but damn, these guys put it all to shame. In fact, when I had my vasectomy, Dr. Bohus found the *same* vein that they used for my IV, did a clean insert, and gave me the valium to calm me down. Nearly painless except for the burning of the valium going in. Not so here. It was pain all around, and every time another nurse saw my IV they wondered what the hell had happened...so it wasn't just me.

So Marni and I wait. We want to make sure before we call the family or my work. A nurse comes in and tells me that he has a lot of paperwork for me to sign. I'm a bit confused and he asks if Dr. Judy has seen me yet. I say no and he goes on his way with his paperwork. Then Dr. Judy comes and tells me that it is definitely appendicitis and that it would probably be best to remove it. It was my decision, but it was obvious that not doing it would be the wrong thing to do. And since I've known people who have had their appendix rupture, I really didn't want to go through that! So Marni signs the paperwork and we call the fam.

Jennifer and Emily come down to the hospital to see me. They're awesome. Always. Mom was distraught, but was happy to hear from Jennifer that I was feeling okay. I went into the recovery room at about 10ish, I think. And then into surgery around 11ish. There was a little 10 year old girl in front of me having the same procedure--and everything went fine for her as well. I was admitted into the hospital and spent the night there.

I was really, really hugry since I hadn't had anything to eat since 6pm Tuesday night and it was now after midnight. Jen and Emily and Marni went home to let me get some rest. I didn't get much, though, since the night nurse kept coming in and giving me crackers (which was awesome) and taking my vitals (which is what woke my up since the blood pressure machine would take them every 20-30 minutes. Oy!

Marni came the next morning, having taken the day off. I had breakfast and lunch and they released me into the wild. I picked up my Vicodin and antibiotics and am at home resting somewhat peacefully. I'm now starting to feel the pain around the incision points. I was going to play a little RockBand (Dr. Feelgood was released and I never got to play it!) to pass the time, but my mouth is raw so vocals is out. The incision points pretty much take guitar out of the equation. And drums would hurt like hell...so no RockBand.

Marni's coming home because she's exhausted, so I'm sure we'll sleep for a while and she'll get ready for the show. I don't know if I feel up to going to not tonight. And that makes me sad. I want to give my cast the love they deserve, but I don't know if I have the energy.