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The Gall of That Guy!

I’ve always had trouble with certain foods, but this year I’ve been sick more often than I think I ever have been.  I also developed an unpleasant pressure below my rib cage on the right side, so after a visit to the doctor I went in for an ultra-sound and they found gallstones.  I was referred to a surgeon, and after a three-week wait…three weeks of eating fruit and veggies and ramen and oatmeal with the occasional tuna sandwich or bit of chicken…I got in to see him and set up surgery for this coming Monday.

Ordinarily, I’d be freaking out at the prospect of surgery, but in this case I’m ready for it.  That “pressure” in the abdomen has progressed to full-out pain, and the only way I can sleep through the night is to do it in a half-sitting position on the living room sofa.  That stuff and the diet get old after a while.  Also, this will be laparoscopic surgery, which I’ve edited films of so I know a little about.  It’s comparitively non-invasive and quicker with a faster recovery time.  In fact, I’ve shot and edited a series of films for the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists on patient safety and best practices, so the whole process isn’t so mysterious and imposing to me as it once might have been.  On the other hand, all those films are about the many things that can go wrong when anesthesiologists take short-cuts, split their attention or otherwise screw up, so maybe I should be scared.

One of those anesthetist friends has actually worked with my surgeon before on the same procedure, and says he’s good and quick.  Another has actually called over to the hospital to make sure I have a good team on anesthesia, which is cool. 

I wouldn’t have thought I fit the profile for gallstones…they used to classify the typical patient as “Forty, fat and fertile”.  And female.  But apparently it’s getting to be a lot more common in patients of all ages and both sexes, right down to kids.  Based on the literature, it would certainly explain a lot of my issues over the years.

So anyway it’s off to the hospital early Monday, hopefully back home by late afternoon with a few new holes poked in me, and then off on the road to recovery.  That’s the plan, anyway.  Wish me luck.

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