Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Pre-Op Procedures

Last Friday I arrived at Sacred Heart Health System headquarters, AKA "The Hospital", for my 10:00 A.M. appointment. They were busy, but that's no surprise. And running late.

The first step began at 10:20 when I was called in to have my blood pressure taken by nurse #1. Then we went into her rather nice office and she said, "Let's see, you're going to come in next Thursday for a left hip replacement."

I was ready to leave. We then looked at all the paperwork and the computer screen. She had mis-read the malady. Yes, all the documents say I'll be having a left knee replacement. She was sorry to have made such a mistake.

She took my medical history. I have done this several times before in recent weeks. When she was finished I asked her about all the things my surgeon said would be explained at this interview. She knew nothing about any of them and asked me, "Weren't these questions all covered in your joint replacement class?" That was the first I had heard of the class.

I am to arrive at the surgery check-in office at 5:00 A.M. on Thursday.

Next I went back to the waiting room to wait. Then nurse #2 took blood (lots of it) and urine and gave me an EKG. I passed that one nicely she said. Then back to the waiting room.

Then nurse #3 explained my anaesthesiology to me and mentioned, for the very first time, that I would have some nerve blocker surgery before my knee operation. I'll be asleep for it but they will wake me up after -- just in time to put me under for the knee surgery. She gave me several sheets of paper telling me what to do and what not to do the day before.

Then I left the Pre-Op waiting area to visit another waiting room for a couple of chest x-rays. I got out of there at 12:00 noon exactly.

Apparently all the things the surgeon said would be explained to me will be explained when I go to physical therapy after the operation. I do have a booklet from the surgeon telling me, along with many other instructions, to scrub the knee area the night before with the special soap provided. But nobody gave me any special soap. Or knows anything about the special soap. I'll use Dial.

All I can say right now is, "Just do it."

1 comment:

Jack Ryan said...

For any of Ken's blogger folks reading this, his knee replacement surgery went very well.

I have just left the hospital -- he's out of the recovery room and in his own (rather nice) room. Going back for another visit a bit later.

Just to bring everybody up to date.

Jack