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.