Well I DID go back and talk to this surgeon and I don't think I've ever been so DIRECT in my life.
I went in armed with very clear photos of the two TOTALLY different fluids that drool (and sometimes gush) out of this one tiny hole to CONVINCE him that he can't 'fix THE fistula' without dealing with the tunnel. He already knew that. He plans to go in BELOW the wound to see just how impossible it's going to be to get to where he needs to do the repairs because of the possibility of 'massive adhesions' like there were a year ago. I had seriously grisly photos of some of the 'tricks' Stella has done when she prolapses to convince him that this 'if we get to it' colostomy is not a NORMAL colostomy by any means. He got it. He said he WANTS to do it all at once, he DOESN'T want to open me up again, but he HAS to make that assessment once he gets IN there. I asked him right out: "What would make you STOP?" He thought for a second and said that if he wound up clearing adhesions for 6 or 8 hours, THAT would not be a safe place to remove a section of my liver or do anything more. OK, I hear that.
This guy is GOOD. He has a stellar reputation over there and yes, it's the NURSES who I most listen to. They know. I don't need 'warm and fuzzy' from this guy. I need the BEST surgeon I can get when we're all in that OR. He specializes in colo-rectal issues. He knows this stuff. And this reputation includes doing things that other surgeons can't quite pull off. And he's bringing in a Liver Specialist who also specializes in minimally invasive procedures who is coming in on his day off to do this.
I also asked, yet again, that he NOT leave any staples inside me and he clearly said that if he can possibly avoid that, he will. HOWEVER.....there are certain circumstances that just totally require them. But if he can do it all with sutures, he will. If he can deal with the fistula and the tunnel AND take down the colostomy AND have the liver specialist deal with the 'spot/nodule/tumor' on my liver, he WILL. So it's scheduled for Dec 23.
I'll be the only one scheduled as he needs to allow for my being in there ALL DAY.
When I went to 'scheduling' to sign off on stuff, only THEN was I presented with the abdominal surgery PREP I have to go through. See, the other two major surgeries were screamin' emergencies, so there WAS no prep, and the one in June was not intestinal. I have to drink 8 oz of Magnesium citrate AND I'm to have nothing but clear fluids for the entire day before surgery. Whoa! Folks! I HAVE A HOLE IN MY SMALL INTESTINE!!!! Everything is just going to pour right out of me!
The more I thought about it, the more upset I got. Then a friend wanted to know WHY they're not taking me in a day early to do the prep IN THE HOSPITAL??? Duh, never thought of that. So I've been ASKING for the past week, and everyone I talk to agrees that's the sanest thing to do, but this surgeon has to be the one who 'writes the order' for that to happen and he's been in the OR constantly all week long. I have promises from nurses and office staff that they will TACKLE him when he's due to be in the office tomorrow afternoon and get the answer. THAT will soothe my nerves a LOT.
Yeah. Let's do this prep IN HOUSE. As a matter of fact, let's do the 'clear fluids' via IV so everything doesn't spray out of me. For THAT matter, we might as well do the abx via IV while we're there. I'll still have to drink the Mag citrate, but shrieking diarrhea is the ONE place where one is ok having a colostomy whose 'pouch' will just need EMPTYING (a lot) more often.
And the stress on me, merely being 'taken' to the OR early the next morning, will be MUCH easier than wringing myself out alone at home and then having someone drive me to the surgical waiting room and starting from there.
In the MEANTIME....guess what came out of me on Monday? A-yup, a FOURTH staple! THAT explains why my entire body has been in an utterly inflamed uproar for the past two weeks. Alarm mode. Wound-wise, things have now calmed down considerably. If we can keep it that way for the next two weeks, that would be grand.
You'll be able to track my journey by going to www.peacehealth.org
, clicking on 'surgical patient tracking' and then clicking on Sacred Heart at Riverbend. Even if I can't get my exact patient tracking number up here, you can still watch where "DeHaas" is on that day and see when it starts, when it's done and where I wind up (surgical inpatient south or ICU)
The way I look at it, if I can just live through the prep, then MY JOB will be pretty simple on the 23rd. "Lay Down, Don't Die." HE's got the hard work. In the meantime, any of you looking for some focus, let's SOFTEN these adhesions and why not, while we're at it, how about let's make "SPOT" biopsy back as BENIGN.
I'm HOPING for that Full Surgical Cure so I can have my body back and get on to HEALING. As Gail coached, if for any reason it ALL can't be done at once, I'll STILL be in better shape than I am right now even if he only gets rid of the oozing fistulas. To lose all this endless daily bandage stuff would raise my quality of life considerably. Sure, I'll be bitterly disappointed if I wake up and Stella is still with me.
Dec 23 is a GOOD day for this. A bit after the solstice, so the days will JUST start getting longer by a minute here and there, and a day BEFORE a NEW moon, when I'm less apt to have a bleeding 'high tide'. And Mercury turns direct on the 13th (anyone recall that LAST year, for the really BIG horror, Mercury was retro and we had a FULL moon WITH an ECLIPSE? I was toast before I ever got in there. What's another Christmas in the hospital? Hopefully I won't be on a ventilator in ICU like LAST year.
So, assuming I go in on the 22nd.....FOURTEEN more days, FOURTEEN more days.