Saturday, March 20, 2010

The Tonsil Surgery, lots of pictures and long

This is a picture heavy post and probably gory detail post, but I want to write it down so I don't forget and for any other parents who might stumble across this post while looking for tonsil info like I spent all of last week doing. *whew how about that run-on sentence!*

We were up way before dawn on Alex's surgery day and arrived at the surgery center with Alex in Pj's and full bedhead. He was okay, a little nervous which was to be expected. But the staff was amazing!
The IV was probably the hardest part for him before surgery, but our prep nurse Sheila did a great job explaining how it all worked for him and even took apart an IV stick to show him the insides. That alone made Alex relax a little bit, he loves to know how things work.

The surgery staff took time to come and introduce themselves to me and Alex. The anesthesiologist Dr. C was great, making small talk with Alex about his DS games (which I was REALLY glad i had brought for him, well, he talked me into allowing it to come). But we both knew the time was coming up for him to head to surgery when they all started gathering around his bed.
I took that time to tell Alex about a Lego set he had waiting for him back at home for his recovery, it immediately distracted him which gave the nurse a chance to put his "sleepy meds" in his IV without him freaking out about it. He was pretty funny telling everyone about his Legos when he suddenly stopped and asked "Why is everything blurry? I think I should take off my glasses." After that it was really quick, I had a small chance to give him a kiss and tell him that I would see him soon, and off he went. I wandered back to the waiting room, knowing it would be at least 45 to an hour before I would see him again.
I did everything I could to distract myself from thinking about what was happening to him at the exact moment. I deleted everything off my phone, read part of a book, and before I knew it Dr. B was there to tell me how it went. I had some time to ask some questions and felt really relieved. I still had time to wait before I would be allowed in recovery so I called Casey and my MIL and then had a crazy lady telling me about how she had to be there for her nephew because his Dad was arrested that morning. Seriously.
Once back in the recovery section Alex was really out of it and making horrible sounding coughs. His first words out of his mouth were, "Surgery sucks!" Once he was stable and able to breathe clearly without coughing we were moved to a private recovery bay where we put Alex in a big recliner.

Our nurse Dee Dee was amazing, seriously that woman was such a comfort to us both. While in recovery we discovered that Alex is unfortunately one of those people where anesthesia is really hard on them. He immediately started throwing up old blood, blood that he had swallowed during surgery. I felt so bad for him each time he was throwing up, it sounded so painful. We got him a dose of pain meds on top of the morphine that he was on and a big dose of anti nausea meds. Alex was given a Popsicle, but could barely handle it since he was in so much pain, he ended up just passing out each time he tried to take a bite, or barfing. And red Popsicles are not allowed because they can't tell if there is fresh bleeding, just a heads up!
We stayed in recovery for all most 3 hours because he was not able to stop throwing up. We ended up with another dose of meds that stopped the nausea a little bit and made him even more sleepy.

These barf pans came in handy! I counted and on the day of his surgery he barfed more than 20 times in a 24 hour period. Super scary.

This pic was taken at Alex's request, it was pretty funny to have him wake up briefly and only ask for a picture to be taken. Poor kiddo was passed out on the car ride home, he had zero muscle control and only woke up once to barf. I swear I grew arms to handle driving, holding his head, and barf pan all at the same time.
My mom was waiting here at home when we arrived, she was so great to come and hang out with Alex while I dashed off to the grocery and pharmacy. he slept the whole time which was a blessing.

The pic below was how we spent the majority of the surgery day at home, Alex sleeping, me next to him with my laptop and a every phone I have within arm's reach.
One problem we did have was that Alex had to pee but couldn't. We tried three times in an hour period, but no dice. I had a call into the surgery nurse who finally got back to us and said to put him in the tub with warm water and let him pee in there. It did the trick 20 minutes into the bath. thank goodness! otherwise we would have had to pack up and go to Children's Hospital for a catheter and over night stay. Yay for warm baths!

Alex's only request on Thursday was to see his Lego set, so I set it up right in front of him so he could see it when he could open his eyes.

Archie was a constant companion on Thursday, he was glued to Alex's side always a little worry ball. But a comfort for Alex who would reach out and lay a hand on him every once and a while.

We ended the day with a little bit of food in Alex, some Gerber peaches and chicken broth. He ended up barfing both up later. Keeping liquids in him has been a huge struggle. It hurts to swallow, it hurts to open his mouth wider then a little bit, it just hurts. It is heart breaking from a parent's point of view to be laying next to your kiddo and hear their stomachs growl, but they won't eat/can't eat.
Thursday night was ROUGH. We both passed out around 9:30pm and Alex woke up around midnight in pain, dosed him up and he fell back asleep. At 3:30 am he was up again in major pain and hungry. I dosed him with meds and put him in the tub, where we found out he was seeing scary things on these pain meds. Poor guy couldn't look at the tiles and towels without seeing "bad face and scary movies playing". :(
We ended up establishing a wake up routine of pain meds, bath, Popsicle, movie and then sleep.
Thursday was a long day and night.
More to come later on Day 1 and Day 2 after surgery. Casey is home from his business trip and Alex is 100% better after a scary rough morning. Here is hoping that he sleeps well tonight, me too!


Lisa 3:31 PM  

Nicole: I keep choking up when I read this! Such a rough time for little man. And NO RELIEF during recovery time! I can't imagine how you were int hat waiting room and how you took care of him and empathized with your child the entire time he was suffering!!!

Alex: You are SO STRONG! I don't think I could even handle that now as an adult. I am so in awe of you! I love you, my jumping laundry frog man and am glad you're doing better!

Casey: you have such a great family. I know they're glad to have you home right now. =) LOVE.

Lisa 5:29 PM  

Alex, I keep coming back to this page to see how cute you are!! That top picture is adorable.

Gina 10:17 PM  

Wow, Nicole, what a brave little guy you have! And what an amazing mother you are!!

Casey - you are aware of this, right?! hehe, I know you are. :o)

So glad this is behind you all now.

sunny 10:53 PM  

Wow....first of all, alex is an adorable model. that photo he wanted taken made me laugh :)

What a great insight into something I would have thought would be routine but it wasn't. Brave Alex for making it through the painful surgery and recovery!!

How is he doing now???

and how are YOU doing, Nicole (Worlds Best Mom!!!)?

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