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Feb. 16th, 2011

If you or someone you know is having bypass surgery, or really any surgery that requires breaking open and spreading the ribcage (ouch), know that you should expect six to eight weeks to recover just from the injury of having your ribcage broken open and spread. My mom and I didn't really understand that; I don't think the doctor mentioned it, and we didn't think to ask. Even Barbara Walters' documentary a couple of weeks ago was light on this detail, though one or two of her interviewees did say the recovery took longer than they expected. We finally heard "six to eight weeks" yesterday from a doctor who was actually satisfied with what he saw of her recovery to date.

The next doctor, though, was charged with looking further, and things aren't quite completely right, as Mom has a little fluid buildup in areas where she shouldn't have this. So we can't say how hard it should be, I guess. Maybe we needed to do more Internet searching or something. Yeah, I now sound like a noob. (Hey, this blog ain't WebMD, y'know.) Anyway... in case you're wondering, there ya go; 6–8 weeks, though mileage may vary, I suppose. After that, you'll probably really appreciate what the surgery did for you.*

(* Unless you get the surgery in extreme urgency. Then you'd probably appreciate being in pain and weak, as opposed to not being here at all. But this was not quite my mother's case; it was just urgent.)



( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 16th, 2011 11:12 pm (UTC)
Then there is the risk of picking up a drug-resistant infection in hospital, which my dad did, and ended up having his rib cage pried at if not completely opened a second time. He was a lot sicker recovering from the infection than from the initial surgery. He is doing great now.
Feb. 17th, 2011 06:11 am (UTC)
That's pretty frightening. I'm glad he's better now. I hope that's not what's happened to Mom. She still has discharge from the incisions on her leg where they got the veins for her bypass, but the fluid is still clear. Guess that doesn't say much about what's happening in her chest, though.

Hospitals are no place to get well, so they say.
Feb. 17th, 2011 12:29 pm (UTC)
Dad's infection was accompanied by a high fever. If that appears, get her to the hospital immediately. In the absence of that, I wouldn't worry, just be thankful she is healing!
Feb. 17th, 2011 02:10 pm (UTC)
Fortunately she hasn't been running a fever, though I haven't thought to ask if she's taking her temperature.

I'm thankful, yes. She has a lot of good moments, so I'm hopeful she'll be fine soon.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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