Surgery day. I’m going to try to remember all the details as they happen because hopefully this will help someone to know what to expect like reading other blogs has helped me.
We had to be at the hospital at 5:30am. Some of our family members met us up there and we all went up to the 5th floor. They took Mackenzie, Michael, and I back to the pre-op holding area and did all the usual questions, paperwork, same questions by different people, more paperwork, etc. She got changed into her nice gown and they got ready to start an IV.
They numbed her hand with a little tube of stuff that makes a loud pop sound when you open it. I think it injects numbing medicine when it does the loud pop sound because there was a little white bump on her hand. Mackenzie said that it still hurt when they inserted the IV, so I guess it didn’t numb it too well.
Here is the last picture of her curved back 🙂
Right before they took her back to the operating room, they gave her some Versed in her IV. Within about a minute, she said that everything was getting blurry and then she just started laughing. And kept laughing! By then, the rest of my family was in the room with us so it lightened the moment at just the perfect time! We kissed her goodbye and off she went.
I think they got started around 7:30am and while we waited in the waiting room, they called us every hour to give us updates on Mackenzie. Every time we got the same update…that they were still working on her and that everything was going well. Around 11am, we got an update that she was getting closed up and that they were almost finished! Dr. Wattenbarger came out to talk to us before we went back. He said that everything went well, she lost about 350cc of blood (he said was normal for this type of surgery), and then gave us an x-ray of her new spine:
Finally, Michael and I were able to go back to the recovery area and see her. When we got into her room, she still had not woken up all the way. The nurse was messing with trying to get the pain pump set up and that’s when Mackenzie woke up. She just looked at us like she didn’t know where she was! Then she said “are they done?”. She said she only remembered being cold in the operating room and then nothing else after that. Her mouth was really dry so she was able to have some pieces of ice. They took out her arterial line because she wouldn’t need it anymore and then just waited until the nurse was ready to take us up to our room.
We got settled in our room and I kept feeding her pieces of ice. Soon after that she said that she felt sick and started gagging and trying to throw up. This made her cough, which made her back hurt, so she wasn’t too comfortable. The nurses came in to roll her on her side to check her dressing. After all this, she pushed her pain pump and then was knocked out.
Around 3pm she woke up gagging again and trying to throw up. They gave her a second dose of Zofran. Again, the dry heaving and gagging made her back hurt so she pushed the button again and was out.
Around 4pm the nurses rolled her on her right side. She got sick again, coughed, was in pain, hit pain button, etc.
This is pretty much how the afternoon went. There was a point in there after getting sick but before her pain medicine kicked in that she was awake for about 15 minutes. She wanted to call her best friend, so she talked to her before she drifted off to sleep again 🙂
She woke up around 6pm and seemed to be feeling better. She drank a little bit of water, she said her pain was a 4 out of 10 (down from an 8 out of 10 earlier), and she said she wanted to try a popsicle. When the nurse came back with the popsicle and handed to Mackenzie, she got sick again. So, that didn’t work out.
The same thing happened around 8pm. So, we didn’t have any luck with trying to eat anything on the first day. All throughout the day when she was awake she would ask if it was still Friday. An hour would go by and she would ask if it is was still Friday! I felt sorry for her; she said she didn’t even feel like she was sleeping because time was passing so slowly for her.
We didn’t get much sleep last night; the nurses would come in every hour or two to flip her on her side, or check her vitals, or turn off a beeping alarm…all that fun hospital stuff. Late in the night the nurse came in to tell me that Mackenzie’s oxygen kept going to 90% and she was going to have to give her oxygen if it went below 90%. We woke her up and moved her around and after that she didn’t have an issue anymore. She also developed a fever of 101.4 last night. They said it was common after being under anesthesia; we just hope it doesn’t come back.
So, that was our first day. Onto day #2!