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First Day After Surgery

May 23, 2012

8 am ————— I’m in and out of consciousness:

I slept pretty good last night seeing that I slept sitting at a 45*angle.  Pain level is at a 1 with 10 being the highest. I’m guessing I slept great because (1) I was on a lot pre and post operation drugs and (2) because I had been awake longer than 24 hours just prior to the surgery.

The first thing I had to drink or eat, was some
watered-down apple juice that gave me the hiccups. I felt like I was in the 5th grade again, hiccuping my head off after drinking a can of Pepsi.

When Dr. A (oral surgeon) stopped by to check on me, he said the hiccups were probably due to the medications, and that was normal. He also said that he was happy to see that the swelling was low, but that I should expect for my head to get bigger for the next 3 days, and then begin to decrease in size. “Keeping your face iced for the first day will help, but after that there’s not much you can do. Its going to get swollen.” Dr. A examined my mouth like a wire sculptor examines his finished product, and said, “Everything looks very good!”

Dr. A also explained a little more how I responded on the OR table. “You were a squirter,” he said.  “Every time we cut, blood would squirt out. The good thing is that you also clotted very well!” He also said, “I have never operated on someone with such a strong jaw!” (That made me proud, seeing that I stopped eating or drinking cow milk that’s suppose to be “great” for bone health.)

9 am————– 3 Asian doctors, whom I’ve never seen, came into my room and introduced themselves.

One of Drs. came around and took off the bloody jaw bra  from around my head and said, “Do you want to go home?” He continued and said that in an hour someone will be coming  to wheel me away to get some x-rays taken, and after that, I should be ready to go home around 12 noon. They were there for about 5 minutes or less, and left just as fast as they came. One of the good things about being at a teaching hospital is that you get a lot of hands on coverage because everyone is there to learn or experience something. As a result the level of complacency is almost non-existent. Nonetheless, I was happy to get the jaw bra off my head.

Today is Wednesday, and the last time I ate a real meal was Monday night, which included a $5 slice of  a Cookie and Cream Vegan Cake from the Whole Foods Market (it was very worth it). Though it has been a day and a half, I am not really hungry; however, I’m sure they must have been giving me something through that IV.

10:24 am ———- While I was being wheeled off to get the x-rays taken, we ran into Dr. Nathan (Intern Anesthesiologist) who was coming to see me. He just wanted to know how I was doing. I told him that I didn’t  remember the operation (a good thing), but only a brief conversation we had beforehand.

Before I left, I asked him how it went for him and he said, “everything was fine until you started waking up.” Apparently when I started to come around, I started kicking and thrashing, trying to pull out everything I was hooked up to. “It took 5 of us to hold you down!” he said. If he didn’t have such a serious look on his faced, I wouldn’t have believed him. We laughed it off,  and went our separate ways. I was happy to have worked with him.

X-rays are done and now I’m back in regular clothes. I will be discharged soon.  Going to make a stop at the grocery store and then the drug store. These are a couple of pictures just before I left the hospital.

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