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Laparoscopy - what to expect, v worried!

(9 Posts)
elementofsurprise Tue 19-May-15 17:19:40

The first thing I shoud mention is that I just got my appt. letter and it says "make sure you read the enclosed booklet carefully" - but there isn't one! So if anyone knows the name of it/if there's the relevent thing online that would help (they're sending one).

Firstly, they have told me to be there at 7.30am, and not to eat from midnight. Does this indicate morning surgery? As the letter doesn't even say an expected time.
What happens before surgery? I'm supposed to go to a ward so does that mean I will have a bed or will I be sat in a waiting room somewhere? I'm quite worried about this as I struggle with depression/anxiety (not working atm) and just getting out of the flat and there at that time is a major effort, as I normally feel horrifically depressed, tearful and despairing when I first wake up. I won't be able to do my tea and toast routine which I use to stop the despair taking over in the morning. I get ratty and distracted if I can't eat when I wake up (blood sugar?) I'll struggle to sleep knowing I have to go in and I'll then have an early start. Soooo basically I don't know how I'm going to cope, without all my coping thingys. If I could curl up on a bed I might manage the (unspecified) wait.

Secondly... my period is due a couple of days before, but could easily come on the day. Very worried about coping at all without usual painkillers if this happens.

Also, I'm scared of pooing at some inappropriate moment!! I get bowel issues around my period especially, and it's a case of "I need to go NOW". If I'm dozy from anaesthetic or something there might be a problem! Plus, erm... well, if I'm feeling a bit stressed out, or just disrupt my normal routine I won't go to the loo until later in the day, so I'm worried they'll be loads stored up for some embarassing moment.
Oh, and will they put a catheter in? If so, do they numb it first?! shock

What happens after - when do they let you go? Do you have to have someone with you? My boyfriend has said he'll go in with me (though doesn't know its so early yet...) but works 1-9pm, and there isn't anyone else I coud ask. I'm wondering if I shoud rearrange it so he has a chance to book a day off (appt. came very quickly, thought it would be months!)

I'm really worried about the effect this is going to have on my mental health and how I'll cope. I'm worried that I need too much support from my boyfriend - he won't be able to be very supportive after work if he's been up early, dealing with me in a low and is working the next day... because he struggles too and has to keep a balance, have time to recharge etc.

Feel a bit pathetic, as I don't have children yet and still dont seem to be able to manage. Tired of having to manage things so I dont end up like a tired hungry toddler sad
Advice welcome...

ps. lap is for suspected endo.

Reekypear Tue 19-May-15 17:37:18

I had one, I found it fine and I have health anxiety. The scar is very small, the most uncomfortable bit is the carbon dioxide leaving the body, they use CD to slightly inflate the area in able to see properly, but it tends to leave the body via the shoulder for some unknown reason, a heat pack is a must, use on of the microwave bean bags.

I. Sue you will be fine, just follow the after care instructions properly, and you will need some days of rest after. X

Thymeout Tue 19-May-15 18:39:00

Your bf may not be able to wait with you. When I had surgery, we were told there wasn't room in the 'surgical lounge' for anyone other than the patients.

Everyone on the morning list had to get there by 7. It just depends whether there were emergencies overnight or more serious operations ahead of you. I knew I'd be staying in for 4 nights, and they wouldn't let me out without an escort, even in a cab. But when I had day surgery, they let me out late afternoon, on my own, after I'd assured them there would be someone at home to look after me.

So it could be a long wait, on your own - but I found the other patients very friendly and time passed remarkably quickly. Are you on medication for your anxiety? Ask your GP for one-off help.

Good luck!

elementofsurprise Tue 19-May-15 22:15:29

I dont take meds at all because I haven't found antidepressants useful. I've had some anxiety ones that helped ad hoc but basically make me fall asleep - my biggest issue is feeling overwhelmed and lethargic/depressed so not useful, unfortunately - having to fight to stay awake whilst sat in a waiting room is awful.

This whole thing is making me realise just how much I have to do/how restricted my life is just to cope sad Poor night's sleep + having to be somewhere unfamiliar before midday (morning is worst time mentally) + not eating = recipe for 'being mental'. I mean, hopefully not but I run my life trying to manage this and the odds aren't good.

Looks like I'll be leaving on my own in a taxi, then. However, there won't be anyone at home... I live alone. Bf v close by but obvs. not in til 9.30pm or so. Bit worried this is putting too much on him now.

Absolutely terrified about the whole thing.

What about catheter?

When do they decide you can go? Bit worried bout woozily trying to get a taxi when my time's up. Actually fucking terrified I will be so sad and confused and overwhelmed I will have a panic attack and dissociate and not have a clue what I'm doing.

Sorry to be so rubbish, starting to understand why having a mental health problem interferes so much with physical healthcare.

MountainDweller Tue 19-May-15 22:49:57

Hi - I think they may not let you go unless there is someone that can be with you - usually it is recommended to have someone with you for 24 hours after a general anaesthetic. They shouldn't throw you out while you are still really woozy - normally they will give you something to eat and drink and check that you can wee ok before you go. If you have to get a taxi they should call one for you. It's not usual to have a catheter for an investigative laparoscopy. Good luck.

WiIdfire Tue 19-May-15 22:58:32

Starving from midnight usually indicates morning surgery, but some places run all day lists and decide the order on the day, so be prepared to be waiting around.
Some waiting areas have beds for everyone, some have a waiting room with chairs until nearer the time.
It would not be routine to have a catheter for a laparoscopy, but if you do it will be put in once you are asleep. Removing it is not painful and nothing to worry about.
You wont be sent home until you are ready and have someone to be at home with you, I would suggest taking an overnight bag just in case, then if you feel bad after the op and need to stay in it wont be such a worry.
You should be able to take paracetamol/ Ibuprofen as usual before the op, up until midnight, and if you need more on the day of the op whilst waiting, then they will be able to sort that for you.
Hope that answers some of your questions.

WiIdfire Tue 19-May-15 23:00:15

Ps I really recommend mentioning your anxiety to the doctor and anaesthetist that you see before the op - when Im deciding on list order, I will put an anxious patient as near the start as possible.

swooosh Tue 19-May-15 23:08:09

Theatre nurse here smile

If nil by mouth from midnight your surgery will be before midday, of course delays happen so it may be sometime later. The anaesthetist will see all patients before and prioritise. You will be a day case and generally day case patients are done first so they can get going home quicker (as apposed to say hysterectomies who stay a couple of days)

Depends on the hospital, it may well be a 'holding area' waiting area, it could be trolleys in a bay or it could be a ward.

Do not worry about period. It's not a problem. You can take painkillers if you really have to with a small sip of water. Just let your anaesthetist know so they do not double up any medication you may have already taken.

Pooing..don't worry. It rarely, rarely happens. If you do it will be when you're asleep and you will wake up fresh and clean.

No catheter usually.

They usually let you go once you are comfortable, have eaten and been to the toilet. Do let the nurses know you won't have anybody at home til later though. Is there not anyone who could come and sit with you at home for a while? You will be feeling a bit 'crampy' mainly due to the air that's used during the procedure.

Do hope it goes well for you OP.

elementofsurprise Wed 20-May-15 15:55:45

Thank you eveyone, you've put my mind at rest a bit.

Also got pre-op appt tomorrow, so will let them know re. mental health.

Had a chat about it all with boyfriend last night, he is very chilled and supportive about the whole thing... it's the first time I've actually needed support for anything medical so it's the first time I've really experienced the way people find it so much easier to help/be supportive when it's physical.

There's a possibility there might be someone who can at least be in when I get home. Got a bit worried they'd be cross with me for taking up space if I had to wait until BF could come after 9. Although according to BF (who's spent quite a lot of time in hospital) it seems a lot of the anxiety stems from experiences at the hands of the v v overstretched mental health side of the NHS.

So a lot less worried and kind of intrigued to see what it's like being a patient for the first time. Fingers crossed it's not looking too bad in there.

Thank you again smile

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