Monday, May 19, 2008

Port Placement

My port gets re-placed on Friday morning. I have to be at the hospital (University of Washington Hospital) at 7:30 am for check-in, surgery at 8:30 or 9:00. I’m not allowed to eat after midnight, although I can take any medications I’m on, which means, boy howdy, I will make sure to have had my anti-nausea.

A port placement is a pretty minor surgery. Outpatient, local anesthetic, and something so that you don’t remember the procedure. It’s supposed to be uncomfortable to “breathe in, hold your breath” while they’re X-raying to check the location of the tube, but it’s not. I know this because seven years ago, when I had my first port installed, the drug that was supposed to make me forget (which actually sort of worked, because I sure can’t remember the name) kicked in too late. I remember the procedure—lying there in the OR, talking to the surgeon and assistants, breathing in, thankful for the sheet between my eyes and the cutting—but I had to be introduced to the post-op nurse multiple times.

When I had my port out last spring, I was alarmed to see the ancient surgeon shuffle into the room to meet me pre-op. But although his voice was old, Dr. Hickman’s hands were rock solid. And I assure you, I looked. Also, whoever administered the forgetting drug got the timing right and I remember nothing of the procedure, but everything about post-op—even seeing a young doctor I’d known as a child, and making Mom go to make sure (I was right).

3 comments:

Ian said...

Apparently Dr. Hickman was a sprightly 80 years old last spring when he did your operation, with "no plans to retire."
http://www.medicalalumni.org/bulletin/spring_2007/alumni.html

matching socks laura said...

Calin I can just see you making your mom go check on the doctor you remembered from your childhood.

Stacey said...

Is it bad form to emphasize *making*? :-)