how it all went down, the details, contains pictures!


We arrived at 10am and went to day surgery registration where we completed all the paperwork. The clerk explained that I would be taken to the pre op preparation, and then MLM would be brought over to sit with me. They told him about the waiting room where he could sit and watch TV while I was in surgery, and gave him a slip of paper with the room location on it, and where to find me afterwards.

In pre-op, I was kitted out with the usual elegant open at the back gown, some paper slippers, and a saline IV. Clothes and shoes were put into plastic bags for MLM to take care of. He came over and we sat and chatted for a while about this and that. Once we had planned the hypothetical new deck in the back yard and considered new blinds for the French windows we played I-spy. It was a long wait. Then we were taken up to the OR area, for another wait.

By this stage we are getting a little nervous. I’d been to the loo four times and MLM had done a little bit of pacing up and down. Then people start coming to greet us. The first was an OR assistant who insisted on talking with her mask on. I asked her to remove it explaining that I was having cochlear implant surgery, and so couldn’t hear very well…

Enough of her. Three good-looking doctors came to see me. How come when I was young, single, and working in hospitals the doctors were rarely good looking? Let alone charming, and smiley, and kind – as these were. Two assistant anaesthesiologists, and one assistant surgeon. Then the boss anaesthesiologist came too, an equally kind and charming woman. The assistant surgeon asked me which ear was being done, then wrote ‘Ned’ next to that ear. That’s the name if the surgeon by the way as well as the name of my lovely godson. The assistant surgeon said that I could keep my hearing aids in and specs on until we were in theatres if I wanted too but I took the hearing aids out and gave them to MLM – my hearing skills were out of the window by then. My specs I need, I’m very shortsighted with a -9 prescription.

The assistant surgeon wheeled me off to theatres, on the way there we passed the boss surgeon who was stretched out on a windowsill ….he took his mask off and greeted me with a word and a wave. My stretcher was parked outside the theatre and the OR assistant came along with her mask on again, the surgeon got off his windowsill and came along to explain to her that I can’t lip read with a mask on. She insisted on taking my specs from me then. So now any faces I see have to be about a foot from my face so I can see them to lip read. Her actions tipped me over the edge and I started to cry but managed to control it until I’m wheeled into the OR. Straight into the OR. In the UK the patient is wheeled into the anaesthetic room where you are put under. You never see the inside of the OR with all the gadgets, and the drills, and the shiny, pointy things that they are going to use on you. It was rather a surprise to be wheeled right in, then have to shuffle across onto the OR table naked arse revealed to the room. Then more of the OR assistant and mask speaking. Some tears, but the kind boss anaesthetist was there, and lovely, and supportive, but it would have been so much better if I had had my specs on.

I woke up in recovery feeling just fine really. As fine as you can do after 3 hours of surgery and hole drilling. After a while they took me up to the floor, where I had a nice room to myself.

Some really, really lovely nurses too. Pain meds, iced water, no food, no ice cream though. MLM stayed for a while and then went off back to Rob’s for dinner and his ice cream. I slept on an off, with a couple of top ups of meds for the pain, and my Blackberry for company. It was so lovely to get all your messages, thank you.

At 7:30 Tuesday morning a couple of doctors came and took the drain out and put a dressing on it. Later on a nurse arrived and redid the dressing properly ;-). We had to hang around until the skull x-rays were done. To show the position of the implant. Then we left at around noon and went back to our friends where I got to eat ice cream. Hurray for ice cream! It was delicious.

We were back home at 5pm, we had some supper, and I settled down to watch a few episodes of NCIS.

Today I’m feeling fine. A little giddy if I move to quickly, and a sore throat if I talk too much, a feeling of fullness in the right ear and a slight pain every now and then. Oh and it hurts when I burp, you know the discreet burps, so I have to let them out. I never realised how much I burped until now, maybe it’s a side effect???

Here’s my scar and semi Mohawk hairdo.


7 responses »

  1. What some people will do for ice cream, I tell ya.

    A very interesting account of your day, Mog. I'm horribly squeamish and found reading that actually very easy. Very calming even, even the pic is ok! And I'm very glad to hear that you were treated well… we'll ignore the OR assistant.

    So, now it's just healing for awhile until it gets switched on?

    Btw, your hair is flippin' gorgeous! Love the colour.

  2. It sounds like it all went very well. I have heard of burps being a side effect! Did they tell you that you should not blow your nose for 2 weeks, but instead to sniff gently?

    You do have lovely hair. Every surgeon is different, some shave more than others. Mine only took a very thin strip behind the ear and some have developed a technique where they don't shave any!

    I am so glad you have that part over and it went as smoothly as it did. I hope you will be feeling peppy soon as it will be nicer for you if you can keep busy while you wait for the hook-up. Do you have a hook-up date?

  3. I'm so pleased it all went well, and you haven't scared us all off with horror hospital stories! Loving the hair do Mrs!

    Funky new blog layout too – going to go and have a look around properly now.

  4. Glad you like the new blog layout and the hair! I'm happy wth how much he shaved off but they could have shaved it all and dyed it tartan if it meant I could hear again.

    They didnt mention blowing the nose but I had read something before, so will sniff happily. They did talk about other things that might increase pressure…. and handed out some stool softeners to go with the tylenol 3.

  5. What a great blog. I found you as I've been searching for CI posts. I'm going in soon to see if I'm a candidate. I'm eager to read your progress, and I thank you for explaining everything. Did you have to have an MRI (in the tube!) along the way for this procedure? I would have to be highly sedated for that if so.

    And I know what you mean by giving up your hair (which is gorgeously thick) for your hearing. It's lousy to be deaf. I really have troubles functioning with any sort of joy. Struggle, struggle, always a struggle … 🙂

    Jeanette (from the U.S. — near Chicago)

  6. Hi Jeanette, I'm pleased you found me. Have a look at the blogs in my bloglist there are some helpful HOH/deaf/Deaf people posting in there, plus with links to others. They are a great, supportive bunch of people.

    BTW I didn't have to have an MRI, just a quick CT scan which was extremely normal.

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