Monday, April 21, 2014

Nothing To Eat Or Drink After Midnight

My day started at 8:30 when I had to be at the endoscopy clinic. I was scheduled for an ileoscopy/colonoscopy combination, and even though I have  had both procedures on numerous occasions, I am still not immune to the unpleasantness of it.

I'm lucky in that my ileostomy means that I no longer have to do the dreaded bowel prep, but I still was not allowed to eat or drink anything after midnight last night. Waking up hungry, parched and unable to do anything about it is always a special experience that I do not relish. By the time I got to the doctor's office this morning, I just wanted to get it over with. 

As soon as my ride got to the hospital, they took me back to the holding area to change into a hospital gown and get my IV placed for the anesthesia. I have terrible veins and not being able to drink anything in the hours before getting an IV does not help. I have had many angry exchanges with over-confident nurses and IV techs who are certain they can get the IV in if they just dig around in my arm with a needle a little longer. For the past few years I have been telling the nurses up front that they need to use the smallest needle available and if they can't get the IV in on the first couple of sticks, they need to call someone who can. I would much rather hurt someone's pride than let them hurt my body.

It was not too bad today because I stayed up last night drinking clear liquids until I had to stop at midnight. My veins never pop up like some people's do, but the guy who put my IV in today knew what he was doing and got it on the first stick. After he left I had to wait around for a really long time before they transferred me to the procedure room. It is always inexplicably cold in those rooms, but fortunately they work fast to get the oxygen cannula in place, cover you in monitors and blood pressure cuffs, and pump the anesthesia into the IV. The last thing I remember is commenting that my messy bun was a good choice because it was high enough for me to lay down comfortably. I woke up in the recovery area and groggily tried to get a nurse's attention because I needed to go to the bathroom.

The good news is that everything looked okay to the naked eye. They still took biopsies to send to the pathologist in case there is active Crohn's they couldn't see. The doctor thinks my stomach aches can be taken care of pretty easily with a minor adjustment to my medication. He also said that he thinks my lip is swelling due to stress rather than my Crohn's being active again. I started a short course of Prednisone to help get my lip under control. I'm hoping I'll be on the mend in time for graduation.

After they discharged me, I was finally allowed to eat. We stopped at Panera after a brief trip to the pharmacy to pick up my prescriptions. I ordered a panini, chips, and an oatmeal raisin cookie. Don't judge me internet. I was practically starving. After I ate I spent the remainder of the day napping. When they do this particular procedure, the doctor blows air into your intestines to aid with visibility. As I'm sure you can imagine, this leads to some serious gas pain when you wake up. Between that and the discomfort from the biopsies, I was really tired. Hopefully I will be on the mend tomorrow and ready to resume my regularly scheduled activities.

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