Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Time to Have Holes Poked in Me. Again.

Long ago, exactly when I don't remember but sometime in the last 17 years, I had surgery to repair a hernia, in the left groin area. I didn't know I had one until during an annual physical I had to do the whole, "Turn your head and cough" thing. Then I knew, for my doctor told me so. Now it had been mildly painful in that area for a week or so, I figured in was merely a muscle pull.

Not a big deal, out-patient surgery was called for, in and out all in one day as the surgery was done arthroscopically, I did have to have two little holes in my abdomen (as I recall) one of which was right next to my navel. One for the instrument (the scope) another for to do the work through. They also had to "blow me up" as in "inflate me" so there would be room to work for the surgeon.

In and out, just a little pain.

Down the road a piece my gall bladder decided that its warranty had expired and that it needed to give me problems. In the form of gall stones, and pain, there was pain. Sometimes significant pain. So it was decreed that Mr. Gall Bladder must be evicted from the place where it had always been. Again two or three little holes in my abdomen (I think they used the same ones as before) and voilà, no more gall bladder, no more problems. (Well, except for the third day after surgery, again of the out-patient variety, when I felt as if I was going to die. In fact, kinda wished that I would do so. The Missus Herself called the doc who told her that that was completely normal. But if it didn't go away in a few hours, why then she could just haul me down to the emergency room. It being after hours and all.)

Well, the pain did subside. Everything healed up real nice and I discovered that I had many friends and acquaintances that were living life sans gall bladder. Who knew?

Time went by, the glaciers receded, new life forms arose upon the planet and my diverticulitis started to act up again. Now while suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune I noticed a bump above my navel. I assumed that it was scar tissue from my previous arthroscopic surgeries. But when the doctor summoned me to the O.R. for to have my colon turned into a semi-colon, he discovered that that bump was a hernia.

This, as some of you may recall, was last year. Nearly exactly a year ago as a matter of fact. (You can, should you wish to, follow that whole saga starting here, ending around here.) Well, in addition to removing a foot of colon to hang on his trophy wall (just kidding) the good doctor repaired the above the navel hernia. He couldn't use a mesh to repair the tear as he didn't want to risk any infection in my abdominal region. As that sort of thing can kill a fellow, I wholeheartedly concurred with his decision.

Should be no problem he said, you'll be fine he said.

But ya know, when you get enough holes punched in you, something may eventually give. Which it did, sometime earlier this year I went to my doctor and announced that I had, "ta-da!", another hernia.

"How do you know it's a hernia?" she asked.

Ah, let me demonstrate I said. Placing my hand on my belly, up and to starboard from center-line in relation to my navel, I indicated that there was a bulge, and when I coughed, it pressed against my hand.

So the doc, of course, had to try it for herself. Sure enough, we were in agreement, I had a hernia. Not a big one mind you, a "take it easy and we'll see how it goes" hernia.

"So Doc, is this thing supposed to get smaller, or bigger?" I called, asking for an appointment.

"Ah, smaller or the same would be the desired outcome. Come on in."

So I did and it was off to see the surgeon. Again.

No arthroscopic for me this time. This hernia is the size of a freaking softball. While it is normally not painful, sometimes I will awaken in the wee hours after coughing and feel, shall we say, "uncomfortable." What a doctor might term "mild discomfort." Not screaming agony mind you, more along the lines of "wouldn't it be nice not to have this thing bulging out of me anymore and waking me up in the wee hours of the night" discomfort.

So I get to do the whole surgery thing again. Doc says about a four inch incision, probably a one or two night stay in the hospital, depending on pain. Also a 1 in 400 chance of "complications." I didn't want to know what that might entail, still don't. Didn't ask. Very much a "La la la la la la - can't hear you, not listening!" kind of thing.

Surgery is scheduled for Friday the 19th of August at 0600 local. Which gives me the weekend to recover. I asked if I could go to work the following Monday after the surgery and all the doctor would say was, "We'll see."

Oh boy, maybe I get to fight with the insurance company one more time. Also this year my medical insurance is different. I don't know if it's better different or worse different. We shall see. By the way, thanks Obama, without you I would still have my old, fairly inexpensive medical plan. Now, thanks to the tax whores in Congress I have to pay more out of pocket. After taxes.

Yes, this might suck.

A lot.




48 comments:

  1. I turn 55 on 21 AUG spo I will think of you on my birthday.

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    Replies
    1. 55 is a good age. I vaguely remember it. (Just kidding, it was only 8 years ago.)

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    2. Ahh, 55. I hardly remember being that young Scott. You are quite learned for such a young man. :)

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    3. I remember that 55 was a speed limit and...
      ...can't remember where I was going with this.

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    4. Hahaha!

      There's another age thing.

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  2. Yes Sarge, it does seem that past a certain point things just start popping up, or out as it may be. Hopefully most of us will be able to get by with what are relatively minor corrections. Not that we can influence it much, but being able to escape any of the critical events that would seriously get in the way of living life is a goal. We do what we can, what we must.

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    1. So far it's been good not getting any life-threatening. For that I am thankful.

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  3. Well, officially your tactical call sign is "Sarge". However, your lineage is Air Force, not Navy, so your tactical call sign can be changed. There's a significant ground swell building to change it to "Henry" after your 12 Angry Folks episode. However, there is a new front opening up to change it to "Steve" as in "The six million dollar Gut". Only time will tell which it is to be. Remember, protesting of any proposed names is a vote FOR that name.

    The Chairman of the Tactical Call Sign Committee will inform you of the committee's decision when made. All modifications needed (e.g. hats, blog logins, email addresses etc.) will be accomplished by you in an expeditious manner. Failure to comply will result in your buying rounds of adult recreational beverages for all readers you meet until compliance occurs.

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    1. Juvat - No protests here. I will abide by the committee's decision.

      I LOVE both ideas. I embrace them. I want them. (Does reverse psychology work on stick actuators?_

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    2. You probably know me - Heh. Now that one shows some thought.

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    3. No...overly emphatic enthusiasm for any callsign can result in an adverse vote for that callsign also.

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    4. Um, I knew that. No, really.

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    5. Moley has been duly submitted to the Committee and is generating interest.

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    6. No comment. I am prepared to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.

      This IS somewhat irksome because "You probably know me" is a (former) Tomcat bubba.

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    7. Then there will be both a Badger and a Moley here!

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    8. Hhmm, considering as how I wear spectacles, Moley is now taking on multiple meanings.

      Curiouser and curiouser.

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  4. Hey!! This is becoming just a little tedious? Anyway--sure you'll be fine.

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    1. Yeah, it does get tedious after a while.

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  5. Prayers to guide the surgeons.

    And a prayer to the big guy to stop having things trying to stick out that shouldn't.

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    1. Thanks.

      Yeah, I'm not a big fan of protrusions. Interrupts the airflow, tough to maintain that "low drag, high speed" image I have of myself.

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  6. You apparently are one of those whose body insists on lots of attention. I don't envy you none. I've been blessed
    that my only issue is a bad back from an accident on the flight line at Tyndall but I've learned to live with it.
    Prayers will go up that you will have a surgeon with skill and steady hands and that your 'bod' will finally decide
    that it is happy with the status quo after your surgery!

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    Replies
    1. It used to take whatever I threw at it. I guess it's payback time.

      Same surgeon as before, he's a good one.

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  7. Get you a sharpie. X marks the spot and leave a note for the Surg team to wash their hands.

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    1. Sound wisdom!

      Especially the "wash your hands" advice!

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    2. Naw, the nurse will draw a circle, and now you've got the operating team playing tic-tac-toe.

      And maybe "sharpie" isn't the best word to use; just saying.

      Bruce Jones

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    3. Good point Bruce.

      Damn, I said "point."

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  8. Ooh, and I've been complaining about a computer issue...I feel so shallow. Hope all goes well with the doctor and the insurance.

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    1. But I've so enjoyed your computer problems...

      Hhmm, that didn't come out the way I meant it.

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  9. OAFS:

    I am sending my best thoughts your way in hopes that everything will turn out well. May the One Who Makes Things Happen smile upon you.

    Paul L. Quandt

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  10. Are you sure you want that fixed? You have a neat party trick as it is right now. I'm sure it would impress the ladies.

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    1. Um, no.

      Right now it's about as impressive as an alien popping out of one's chest.

      Though if I got a face tattoo on it...

      Now that would be cool!

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  11. Avoid the tattoos, they will make you look foolish in fifty years. Our prayers will be with you on the 19th. We get back to FL on the 17th after a month here in the place we're glad we moved from. Still trying to get rid of the things that God has blessed us with in 51 years of marriage. Found out it is all worth pretty much nothing!! Except to us, the sellers.
    "Fuzz"

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    1. Well, I already look foolish but "roger that" on the tattoos. I'm not good with needles anyway.

      Thanks "Fuzz." Sir.

      :)

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  12. Gee sarge, the ONLY surgery I've ever had was when I had my tonsils out when a mere "yout" and last year to remove a malignant melanoma from my nose (too many yrs in the sun on the tennis courts w.o. any sunscreen, I guess) so hard to relate to a "hanger queen" like you. :) Just as long as you're able to taxi out under your own power after the operation is a success, right?

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    1. Hahaha!

      Copy that Virgil. (It's nice and cool in the hangar. Just sayin'...)

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  13. The image you conjured of pressing hand to abdomen made me think of Napoleon with hand in waistcoat. Which led to the question of whether he suffered from abdominal hernia. Which then led to some call sign ideas. "Waistcoat" "Fingers" "Elba"

    No, I really shouldn't comment when I'm tired.

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    1. "Waistcoat" "Fingers" "Elba" submitted to Call Sign Committee. Fingers polling strongly at this point.

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    2. Hahaha! Ah, to be compared to the Emperor. Tired commenting can be fun.

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    3. Fingers? They were throwing "Stitches" around on Facebook. Tsk, idle hands...

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    4. Not surprised "Fingers" is polling well. It has a bit of real call sign flavor.

      I knew a BN who opened his head against a control surface doing walk around on his first Intruder flight. Ambulances, head shaving, and many stitches were involved. Within moments of returning to the ready room with his down chit he was "Chemo." Still is. As far as his wife and kids know, it's his legal name.

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    5. Oh shit, oh dear.

      Got that from a fighter pilot type novel. Can't remember which one.

      While "Fingers" has a certain ring to it...

      Never mind, I ain't going there.

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  14. Prayers for you and the surgeon, I had hernia surgery in March of this year to repair damage I did long ago while at survival school back in 06.
    I made it through the surgery even though they gave me a great discount, I went in to get one fixed and while they were poking around they fixed four others for free!

    God Bless and keep you safe, and may he bless your wife and friends with infinite patience while you recover (I know mine needed it).

    MSG Grumpy

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    1. Thanks MSG Grumpy.

      Patience is often needed around me.

      :)

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  15. I'm thinking "Radar" cause the sarge is NCOIC of all the paper work to keep the unit going, he wears specs, and he seems to spend so much time around the docs. And Chris, it probably shouldn't concern you too much, but just remember that even the good docs just "practice" medicine. Hang in there, buddy, and I hope you don't end up with three good looking nurses climbing all over you to take care of things.

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    1. I truly appreciate a good nurse. Long story there, not sure if I will ever tell that one.

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Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)