Topic: Post Op
Well, the last time I wrote was the day Mum came out of ICU, which was 8th June. Today is the first time I have been able to get out of the hospital to catch up on email etc. I have been living there mostly 24/7, apart from a couple of trips to the Hostel where I am supposed to be staying, to have a shower and change of clothes!! WOW!! The Greek system is very different to anything I have ever encountered, although I have to say that I have never been through major surgery with anyone in UK, so I have nothing to base my experince on really. But I am sure that on a ward with 5 patients, there would NOT be 5 guest sleeping on the floor too!!
Progress has been slow but steady, and I am just writing this as I am interested to hear if what goes on here treatment wise is similar to what happens elsewhere!
I would also hasten to add that the hospital where Mum is (Rio, nr.Patras, Greece), is a great hospital. The nurses and doctors have been lovely, but are SO stretched resource wise, mainly staffing shortages, and they have to work the most HORRENDOUS hours, most of them regularly have to do 30 hour+ shifts, and they have so many people in their care. I would estimate that on the corridor where we are, there are at best, 3 nurses to maybe 25-30 patients, and the doctors have to spread themselves over maybe double that. Hence the fact that every patient has a family member that stays with them, to attend to stuff that the nurses often don't have time for. So I am now a regular nursing assistant!!
Anyway, this is how things have gone post op.
Initially she was a mass of tubes and drains. She had one tube up her nose and down to her stomach, to drain the stomach. She had a catheter. She has 3 tubes coming out of her side, on the end of each is a small container. Apparently the tubes go to various sites around the liver area, and provide the doctors with "a picture as to what is happening inside". She also has various IV stuff, the usual dextrose and sodium chloride, and then had had Metranodizole (think that was it), and another drug called, I think, Timetrin, presumably also antibiotic. She has also had an iron drip a few times. Also Human Albumin drip.
The day she came back to the ward, she was in pain, but since then, has suffered very little pain at all, just occasional discomfort, which has been a great relief. 3 days after the op she was told that she needed to get moving, so much hampered by all the attachments, we progressed within a day from a shuffle round the ward, to several trips up and down the corridor. It has become easier on a daily basis, and she now has about 6 or 7 10 minute walks round the hospital.
2 days ago, they removed the stomach drain.Yesterday(June 16th)they removed the catheter, and for the first time since the op (6th June), she was allowed to drink, having been only allowed to suck on wet gauze since the op!! Also yesterday, she had a kind of noodle soup, very plain, and has been put on Fortimel, which is a kind of vitamin/mineral/protein drink. It is just a small bottle, maybe 750ml, and she has to drink that over a 12 hour period. And also she is allowed fruit juice now. She's in heaven!! And REALLY hungry now, no major loss of appetite! The Docs say that depending on how the fortimel and pasta/noodley stuff goes, they'll try her on something new tomorrow.
As for chemo/radio therapy, I have no idea. They are still waiting for the lab reports to come back, and I'm told they will discuss all this stuff with us when they have the results. They are really happy with how the op went, and with her progress. I must say, I didn't think we would be in hospital so long, and I still have no real idea when we'll get out. I guess it depends on how the food thing goes. They also told me that it has taken a little longer than expected, because they worried due to the fact that her white blood cell count was very high, and they were worried incase of infection, although outwardly, she seemed fine, temparature normal, blood pressure etc normal, but they didn't want to rush things along, incase.
Apart from that, she has had a CT scan post op, and a couple of Xrays, I believe to look for fluid build up. Apparently she has a little, but nothing to worry about.
WOW! It's been a real journey for us both. I'm so glad I've been here for her. I have less than 2 weeks though, before I have to return to UK. I hope I can get her home to Kefallonia before I go, and get her installed into her home again, although she is taking a small studio for a month, before moving back into her caravan!
Anyway, blah blah, I think I have covered everything.
As I said, I'm interested to hear if people in UK/elsewhere have had similar drugs/experiences.