Thursday, July 18, 2013

Not as Easy as it Looked

We were thrilled with the outcome of T's surgery on Tuesday.  She seemed to breeze right through, and when we left the hospital on Tuesday evening, we were imagining she might be home today sometime.  Wednesday started out well, and things were looking promising, but by afternoon, it began to appear that there were problems developing.

The doctor had ordered a "routine" x-ray with contrast that was meant to show that all the new connections were intact.  That was done at about 9:00 Wednesday morning, and in theory, once it was read by the radiologist, she would be allowed to start taking clear liquids.  We waited.  And waited...  And waited.  As the morning turned to afternoon, and then as the afternoon wore on, we began to worry.  Too, she began to feel nauseous and her abdomen was distended and felt warm to the touch.  She began to complain of pain -- inside, and it kept getting worse and worse.  By about 6 PM, we got word that there was NOTHING moving through the stomach; absolutely nothing passing through the stomach and into the intestine.  We were told that it might be edema that was causing swelling and preventing the contrast media from moving through the new pouch.  It might also be an ileus.  We are familiar with ileus -- Tom had trouble with ileus after His roux en y, and again after His bowel obstruction.  Or, worst case, maybe it was a kink in the intestine -- which would necessitate further surgery to correct it. 

We were at the hospital until about 9:00 last night, and when we headed home, we were very concerned that there would be more surgery today.  We tried to get to bed early and got up at 3:45 AM so we could be back at the hospital by 6 AM to see her surgeon.  When we arrived, it turned out that a series of additional x-rays were being ordered to try and evaluate the situation. 

We spent about 13 hours today, waiting for some word, watching poor Teresa hurt, helpless to alleviate her pain and nausea.  It was a long, miserable day for her.  At the end of it all, it appears that there is significant swelling which is impeding the flow of liquids through the stomach.  There will be more x-rays tomorrow, but unless the docs see something else, this is going to be mostly a matter of some days to allow the swelling to resolve. 

At least tonight, she seems to be feeling better.  Hopefully, she'll be able to sleep tonight.  Hopefully, we will do likewise.  Tomorrow, we'll be back at the hospital with her, and we'll see where we go from here. 


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