Thursday, November 16, 2006

The Procedure

(This was written about 12:15.)

Arrived for the procedure about 8:20, where a nurse went through what would happen, double-checked I'd followed the critical prep instructions, got me undressed, in a gown, under a blanket, and a saline IV started.

I hadn't thought about that, but the saline IV makes sense, you don't want a dehydrated patient, and I was told to stop drinking fluids entirely starting at about 3 this morning, so the IV gives back a little of that fluid without getting in the way of the procedure. It also gets one cold, thank goodness for blankets. And socks, you're allowed to wear socks--why did I leave the colorful stripy socks at home today?

I was walked into the procedure room, nurse carrying the IV, got down on the exam table. There I met the doctor performing the procedure for the first time. He went through was going to happen--that they were going put both air and then water into me to open things up for the endoscope, etc., then they
moved me over onto my left side, and started the quote-good-drugs-unquote, Versed or something like it.

I don't have memories of most of the procedure, but I have a pretty clear memory (accurate or not) of seeing one polyp before and after removal, moreover, my memory roughly matches one of the Polaroids that they provided after the procedure. I remember being wheeled out of there, but I don't recall actually feeling any sensation of the endoscope in my anus at any time. Studies have shown that there can be some level of "false memories" during Versed, so ...dunno.

The doctor explained to me that they'd removed four things, two of which were likely polyps, the other two might have been or may not have even been up to that stage, all four were removed, the biopsies will be done in 7 days. I remember this from the procedure room and it matches what is written down on the paperwork I got from them. At this point they also provided me the aforementioned Polaroids.

Got wheeled back into another room where I rested, was eventually allowed to dress (in the adjoining bathroom). I have a bit of a memory of being walked out of the building, and a seemingly mostly coherent set of memories from the way home. I definitely feel spacey, a slight bit of balance, and I think I am still having bits of short-term memory drop-out, but all in all if anything this was a less strong dose of the amnesia, and a relatively pleasant procedure. I've already eaten, there's no nausea, no pain, definitely some gas but no cramping, so I'm in a very good space indeed.


Anonymous said...

Oh yes, I remember the "cold from saline IV" from my abdominal, before which I too was asked not to eat/drink for quite a while. The memory stuff sounds very familiar from my foot surgery, too. Except of course I wasn't allowed socks.

I think it's way cool that they gave you photos.

Glad this went as well as it did!


Yani said...

This whole process sounded not bad at all, until you mentioned that you have to get an IV. I fear that far far more than getting anally probed.

Joe said...

*nod* I don't mind IVs that much, there was a saline drip (to make sure I wasn't too dehydrated from not having had fluids the previous 6 hours (actually more like ten, since I'd been sleeping), and they may or may not have applied the Versed that way.

Either way, it's a lot less of a PITA than colon cancer.

Anonymous said...

my first is in a couple weeks and I'm only 19. All info I can find is terrifying, even though as you say it can go in a jiffy and you don't even realize.

Compra Oro Plata said...

This whole procedure seemed not bad at all, until you described that you have to get an IV. I worry that far far more than getting anally probed.