Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Emergency-Room Adventures

I went to the ER (for myself) when I was four but don't remember anything about it. But other than to be there with friends and family, I've not had any personal experiences there....until last night/this morning. I really would have been fine had my trend of ER absence continued, but at least I have some answers I've been looking for all year.

My stomach has hurt pretty bad four times this year beginning with one severe instance in January. Two of the instances were in April. And then there was last night, the worst instance of all. I was unable to get a picture of my stomach in January, had an ultrasound done in April without anything showing up on it, and had a CATSCAN done last night. The pain I have felt (in my lower right abdominal quadrant) has been markedly similar on each instance I've had it and has been accompanied by naseau, vomiting, and constipation. It has occurred around my TOM each time as well, and it has all been after WLS. I naturally assumed in Jauary that it was related to the banding. Now it looks like it's probably not (thankfully!!).

Last night, the pain started in the evening and just kept going and going. I began throwing up a few hours in to add more excitement to the goings on. And oh, as some of you are all too aware, throwing up with the band is no joy ride. Holy toledos, Nelly! I was having to stand up and bend down almost to my toes to upchuck anything--and hardly anything was coming out even doing that. The trash can was the best receptacle for this type of throwing up since the toilet was too high. At any rate, this is not a position I like to be in too much even when I'm not sick, so adding a hurt tummy to the mix made things almost unbearable. I had eaten (TMI alert!) Mexican last night, so I had some killer breath and was quite rank otherwise after all of that. The only thing that was partially soothing was lying in the tub with my legs on the wall. I did this in intervals without any consistentcy in relief, the positions I would sit, or the undertaking itself.

My wonderful fiance talked me into going and took me to the hospital (and was so sweet in every imaginable way--although I didn't show him too much love when, before we left, he kept trying to take my temp and sweetly rub my arms and such--I wanted to be left ALONE and kept grunting at the poor guy). I was barely able to put on a brazierre and smelled as rank as they come before we left. I was thinking all night before his insistence in going finally won out that it might just be a virus or bad cramping post banding (before being banded, the first time I ever had my period (13 or thereabouts), I also threw up--first and only time that this had happened until this year). I also didn't want to have any fluid taken out of my band, which has just started showing me real restriction; I thought fluid removal would be inevitable.

At the hosptial, I threw up several times in a bucket the staff gave me in the lobby (in front of all the folks in the waiting room--lovely!), and went through a series of checks and interrogations from what seemed like every person that works in the multi-building campus! They wouldn't allow my fiance to answer for me--protocol, I guess? The nurse put the IV in my arm and took blood. Because I was on my period last night, I had my first catheter experience as well. All these wonderful firsts!!! The nurse told me that I just needed to relax. Like heck! Getting a catheter was so not the type of feeling I get when I'm, say, sitting on the porch sipping tea and watching the sunset! Argh! Finally, after all of the waiting and what seemed like forever, I get some drugs--oh sweet mother's milk (sounds like something Amy W. has or would say :) ). They were amazing! The naseau and pain both subsided. That was great to me because I thought I would have to wait a few more hours for a gastrointestinal doctor to be called to take out some fill (again, that was one of the big reasons I waited as long as I could stand it not to go--because I want to lose weight for the wedding, not go back and forth in weight loss limbo with fill removals and additions).

Then, on to the CAT. A gastric-bypass patient did my CAT. She looked great and has lost tons of weight since her surgery in February (I felt good enough to notice others at that point). She was so sweet and shared all her details with me. It's nice to be able to talk to someone in the flesh (not that I don't love my online buddies too) about WLS since so few know. I have to tell medical personnel because any privacy misgivings are completely trumped by my desire for optimal medical care.

When we got the CAT results, they showed that I had a kidney stone. I believe that we just didn't catch the other suckers in a picture earlier this year as they had moved out already (or were camera shy). The doctor said that people who have one typically report others later and that they tend to see the same people back for them again and again. Super! At least next time I'll leave for the hospital ASAP since they aren't taking any fill out and since I know I need drugs and will have to go through interrogation checkpoints. I just hope I can avoid the catheter if I have to do it again--just remembering it is terrible. Well, after I got my scrips, the fiance rolled me out in the wheelchair (he was getting better at that from the beginning of the night when he was moving that thing like an Olympic running champ--that doesn't feel good when you are in the chair) to insurance and then to the vehicle. He was able to get my scrips for me at the pharmacy.

I've been on drugs and have a filter to catch the stone in if I can. I had to miss work today...probably tomorrow too. I don't know about after that but do know I have tons of drugs to take. I'm almost too exhausted to keep looking at the computer screen, so I have to end this here. I hope I feel better next time I post and that all this is history then.

One final thing, my fiance is heaven sent. I truly believe that. He is amazing! He had to miss work too today because of everything last night/this AM. He has been helping take care of me since too. I am so blessed he is in my life. :)


  1. I'm sorry you had to go through that, but thank goodness it wasn't band related or something that required surgery.
    The pain must be horrible - I remember in High School, this big, 6ft jock fainted in the middle of class because he was passing a kidney stone.
    Your fiance sounds like a keeper - congratulations(I didn't know you were engaged)!

  2. Holy cow! You poor girl.. I went through a kidney stone episode once too and as luck would have it MOTH was out of the country. I never ever ever want to repeat it.. its the worst thing imaginable (hey, and I've had four kids lol) I really hope you feel better soon. Will be thinking of you!

  3. I'm sorry for your pain, but so glad you got it figured out.
    A funny about kidney stones, my BFF's husband had one and was whining and carrying on about how horrible it was (not minimalizing your pain and suffering here) and she was giving him no love or sympathy! When it finally passed, she looked at it's size and said, I've had boogers bigger than that! hehehee.

  4. Wow!! I'm so glad you are okay. And of course your fiancee is amazing. Good people find good people!

    Take care of yourself,

  5. Kidney stones are horrid!! Bry had one in January and then I got one not too long after my gallstones/gallbladder removal. At that point I was just saying shoot me now. Hope you pass it quickly and there are no more!!

  6. wow that sucks! Sorry for you. If you've never had a kidney stone it's best described as feeling like "labor pain". I had a stone after my first kid and I was prego w/ the second and like 9 mths along. I thought I was in labor!!! It hurts that bad. But, on the bright side, it'll be all good as soon as you pass it!

  7. omg...I hope you are feeling better! I hope that it passes quickly and the drugs work!

  8. Oh poor Bandita!!!! That is awful.

    I've never had one but they sound awful. I hope the drugs keep the pain at bay and it passes as quickly as possible.

    Baby yourself today and catch up on some bad daytime TV :-)

    (Glad to hear it wasn't band related, too).

  9. That is terrible!! I am glad that you went to the ER and that you are going to be OK!

  10. Thanks everyone! Yes, I'm glad I had my guy around unlike poor Cara and that I wasn't pregnant like Liz. Oh, and I also have no jock reputation to maintain, so I didn't have to worry about that either :). Thanks everyone for all your comments and get-well wishes! :)