Today was the day I met the man who saved my life without having an array of drugs in my system. I’d met him previously, before and after surgery, however I had all sorts of drugs in my system and to be perfectly honest I had no idea what he looked like. I remember someone (a doctor) coming to see me every day after surgery, and they had a really calming voice, very well spoken, but I had no idea what their name was because I was half asleep (or high on all sorts) when they first introduced themselves to me. So today I got to put a name to that face.
I was really nervous about the appointment. I was still on prednisolone and didn’t think it was working very well. Number wise, it had brought my inflammation markers right down from 42 to 22 in the space of two and a half weeks, but there’s still blood and I don’t know if that’s normal. I had a horrible feeling that I’d tell Mr Tutton about the blood and stomach cramps and he’d send me for tests (a dreaded endoscopy) or just admit me there and then.
I think we were seen relatively on time which is unusual for the hospital. Once we left the main waiting area for outpatients we were shown into a little side room and told Mr Tutton would be in shortly. I sat on the bed as there were only two chairs so I let Mum and Dad sit on them. As I was looking around I noticed a load of strange looking things on the trolley next to the bed. Being nosey I looked at what the packet said – “sigmoidoscope,” and there was one already out the packet on the top of the trolley so obviously I instantly panicked. I told Mum and Dad what they were because they were curious too but at first they didn’t understand why I was so worried, then I explained what they were and they understood. My GP thought I had another flare up and had sent a letter to my consultants recommending I have another scope to make sure things were okay but I thought I’d get a letter through the post about one, not have it sprung on me like this.
Soon enough though Mr Tutton entered and I stopped thinking about the scope. I have memories of being in hospital and different faces, but have found it hard to put names to faces so it was nice to finally put a name to the face. We talked for a while about my progress and he said he was happy with how I was doing and that I looked a lot better than the last time he’d seen me.
I had a few questions I wanted to ask. Since coming out of hospital I’ve had quite a few questions so I’ve written them down to ask to the appropriate medical professionals. One main question I wanted to ask wasn’t really a major one, just me being curious – do I still have an appendix? I thought the answer would be no, however when I had previously seen the stoma nurse she said that if an appendectomy was performed then it would have been on my notes. This didn’t make sense to me because your appendix is basically a ticking time bomb, so why would they leave something like that inside of you. Simple answer is no, I don’t have one anymore so at least that’s one less thing to worry about!
I also asked about the possibility of having copies of the pictures of the biopsies they took when I had my first endoscopy. I think Mr Tutton found this to be a bit of a weird request but he said he’d look into it and chase them up for me so hopefully they’ll be through the post soon!
Whilst I was there I got him to check a stitch I found in my stoma. The nurse had removed most of them a few weeks previously however this one was well and truly embedded. I was told unless it starts to cause me discomfort it should just dissolve in time… How much time though, I do not know.
Then we talked a lot about more surgery and time off of work. An appointment is already scheduled for March 16th to discuss more surgery, however I thought Mr Tutton would know the basics. He was very helpful and definitely gave me a lot to think about before my appointment, and I’m sure by then I’ll have even more questions I’d like to ask Miss Gupta.
Overall though, he was happy with the progress made but told me the most important thing to remember is to not push myself too much. He reminded me of just how ill I was before surgery and that it usually takes people a while to recover from this operation when the surgery is planned so to not expect too much of myself too soon as it’s still early days.