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Back from back surgery…

April 5, 2008

and ready to blog again.  Thanks to everyone for your prayers and comments.  I was powerfully sustained and knew my Lord to be faithful to the tiniest details.

Wednesday morning Husband took me to the hospital by 7:30 a.m.  I was checked in through the outpatient area where they prep all the surgery patients.  Prep involving, of course, the taking of all your clothes and supplying you with a gown where 1/4th of the snaps work, and only 3 ties up the open back to hold things together. Ahem.

I was also supplied with a fancy set of lederhosen knee socks that were later attached to velcro wraps with pumps to help prevent leg embolisms.  Nice, huh?  Oh yes, I mustn’t forget the placing of the IV.  However, this nurse was definitely an expert.  You have to be when it comes to putting a ball point pen sized catheter into a vein of your hand.

Then, a couple of hours passing time with 80’s TV, talking with my parents who made it here to help, and then some last consultations with the surgeon, the anesthesiologist, and time to be wheeled out to the Land of the OR.

While I haven’t had a whole host of surgical procedures in my lifetime, the ones that I have undergone have always left me with this insatiable curiosity to stay awake as long as possible in the OR and take as much in before I’m under the influence.

The OR was huge.  Two surgical nurses were against one wall counting and laying out all the tools.  I heard snatches of words like “the diamond bone drill” and “muscle retractors”.  The nurse anesthetist was obviously assigned the task of chatting with me to keep my mind off what was going on around me.  The surgeon was choosing his music while simultaneously placing my MRI images all over the light wall.

The actual operating table had this saddle looking apparatus on top of it, minus the stirrups.  I had read about the operation and knew that I would be placed on my stomach with my back raised.  But very quickly as I’m trying to process all of this, the nurse anesthetist began to shoot several syringes of happy juice into my IV.

And that’s the last I knew of the OR.

The surgery lasted about 90 minutes, and my next memories involved a very sweet nurse named Debbie feeding me the best tasting ice chips known to this mouth.  She also kept plying me with the warmest blankets, and had her handy syringe of Phenergan to stave off the nausea that usually racks me after general anesthesia.  I owe Debbie at the very least a plate of brownies.  That woman was an angel of mercy in those moments.

The next trip was to my actual room where Husband was waiting for me.  How great to see his face even in my groggy state.  I was in and out of things for well over 3 hours, only remembering snatches of people talking, nurses checking vitals, and just seeking blessed sleep.

To quickly shorten this, the surgery was definitely necessary as it revealed that not only had the rupture enlarged but was actually pressing upon two distinct nerve roots.  Three fragments of the herniated disc were removed, the area cleaned, and my back stapled back together.

I came home on Thursday with very strict orders, a TENS unit for pain management and electrical muscle stimulation, and a very fashionable lumbar corset that prohibits all normal movement. Friends and family have been plentiful in care, food, and entertainment.  The next four to six weeks involve a great deal of recovery time, but how thankful I am for God’s sustainment and care.  In this I will continue to trust.

To give Him the glory!

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. April 5, 2008 3:22 am

    Oh Elle, I’m so glad to know everything went well. You have a great attitude! I know the recovery faces you, but I hope you can see the light at the end of the tunnel!

    Happy recovering!

  2. April 5, 2008 3:46 am

    Wonderful to hear from you, Elle, and know that the surgery went well and you’re receiving the best of care. Thanks be to God!

  3. April 5, 2008 4:07 am

    So glad to hear from you and to know everything went well. I am the opposite of curiosity when it comes to surgery. I wish they could put me to sleep before they wheel me in there!! 🙂

    I pray you have a smooth and speedy recovery.

  4. April 5, 2008 4:15 am

    Praise God!

    So good to hear it went well and that you have support there to help during the recovery.

    Will continue to pray for strength and healing and of course pain management!

  5. April 5, 2008 11:34 am

    Praising God for your good report! I’ll continue lifting you up in prayer, friend.

  6. April 5, 2008 2:40 pm

    Oh praise God! What a wonderful report. Glad to hear all went well and that so many are ministering to you are you recuperate. More prayers on your behalf!

  7. April 5, 2008 5:59 pm

    Fabulous news, Elle. The Great Healer is at work. I pray He will continue to give you strength, rest and peace as you recuperate.

  8. Ellen permalink
    April 5, 2008 8:17 pm

    Giving Him praise for you and your testimony to God’s goodness in your life. I’ll continue to pray for your healing and strength for the weeks ahead. Glad the body is chiming in with lots of food and support for you and the family!

  9. April 5, 2008 10:06 pm

    I am so thankful…and will continue to pray for recovery! Your determination to trust the gracious sovereignty of your God is inspiring. Thanks for sharing…

  10. Jill permalink
    April 6, 2008 2:47 am

    So thankful to hear your good report, Elle! Our God is our strength and our song. May He continue to pour His healing upon you!

  11. April 6, 2008 5:00 pm

    Am praising Him with tears! You are loved.

  12. April 7, 2008 7:56 pm

    Couldn’t wait to get home myself and find out how you were doing!

    Praise God! I’ll be praying as you recover, and giving thanks for what God has done in your life!

    K

  13. April 8, 2008 3:34 pm

    SO glad you are back and that the surgery was successful!

    Don’t forget about the website I told you about a few weeks ago: http://www.lotsahelpinghands.com

    It has really made helping my friend SO much easier! If you need more info, I posted about how it works. The post is entitled: lotsa helping hands

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