Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

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O Stoma Mia
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Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 6:29 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby O Stoma Mia » Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:46 pm

NHMike wrote:...From the meeting notes:

Laparoscopically-Assisted Resection Low Anterior
Anastomosis Coloanal
Temporary Ileostomy
Possible Colostomy (psb)
Placement Stent Ureter - Bilateral

I already signed the Informed Consent at the October 10 meeting though I suppose that there could be another one...

Thanks for the update on your type of surgery.

Here are a couple other Informed Consent forms that you could read for comparison purposes.
Informed Consent - (Laparoscopy)
https://www.health.qld.gov.au/consent/documents/shared_file_46.pdf

Informed Consent - Resection of the Rectum (Open surgery)
https://www.health.qld.gov.au/consent/documents/colorectal_19.pdf

There is information here on the various risks involved and about what kinds of measures might be taken if certain problems arise.

Your notes mentioned the coloanal anastomosis. Did they say how this would be done? By staples? By hand-sewn stitches?

Your notes mentioned bi-lateral ureter stents. Do you know why they are doing this? Is it because the radiation may have weakened the ureter walls? Any idea why this is necessary and what complications may develop?

Other members who have had laparoscopic-assisted LARs may chime in later on with some comments...

NHMike
Posts: 1723
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:43 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby NHMike » Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:51 pm

O Stoma Mia wrote:
NHMike wrote:...From the meeting notes:

Laparoscopically-Assisted Resection Low Anterior
Anastomosis Coloanal
Temporary Ileostomy
Possible Colostomy (psb)
Placement Stent Ureter - Bilateral

I already signed the Informed Consent at the October 10 meeting though I suppose that there could be another one...

Thanks for the update on your type of surgery.

Here are a couple other Informed Consent forms that you could read for comparison purposes.
Informed Consent - (Laparoscopy)
https://www.health.qld.gov.au/consent/documents/shared_file_46.pdf

Informed Consent - Resection of the Rectum (Open surgery)
https://www.health.qld.gov.au/consent/documents/colorectal_19.pdf

There is information here on the various risks involved and about what kinds of measures might be taken if certain problems arise.

Your notes mentioned the coloanal anastomosis. Did they say how this would be done? By staples? By hand-sewn stitches?

Your notes mentioned bi-lateral ureter stents. Do you know why they are doing this? Is it because the radiation may have weakened the ureter walls? Any idea why this is necessary and what complications may develop?

Other members who have had laparoscopic-assisted LARs may chime in later on with some comments...


She did not say how the coloanal anastomosis would be done. The surgeon lists one of her practice areas as robotic surgery but I don't know whether or not this would be used.

I have been following several others going through the same thing and they have had the stents. The surgeon explained that stents are used due to the proximity of the Urethra to where she will be working and it's to prevent damage that would result in incontinence.
6/17: ER rectal bleeding; Colonoscopy
7/17: 3B rectal. T3N1bM0. 5.2 4.5 4.3 cm. Lymphs: 6 x 4 mm, 8 x 6, 5 x 5
7/17-9/17: Xeloda radiation
7/5: CEA 2.7; 8/16: 1.9; 9/8: 1.8; 11/30: 0.6; 12/20 1.4; 1/10 1.8; 1/31 2.2; 2/28 2.6; 4/10 2.8; 5/1 2.8; 5/29 3.2; 7/13 4.5; 8/9 2.8
MSS, KRAS G12D
10/17: 2.7 2.2 1.6 cm (-90%). Lymphs: 3 x 3 mm (-62.5%), 4 x 3 (-75%), 5 x 3 (-40%). 5.1 CM from AV
10/17: LAR, Temp Ileostomy, Path Complete Response
CapeOx (8) 12/17-6/18
7/18: Reversal, Port Removal

SurvivorsSpouse
Posts: 83
Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:38 pm

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby SurvivorsSpouse » Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:11 am

O Stoma Mia wrote:
NHMike wrote:...

Your notes mentioned bi-lateral ureter stents. Do you know why they are doing this? Is it because the radiation may have weakened the ureter walls? Any idea why this is necessary and what complications may develop?

Other members who have had laparoscopic-assisted LARs may chime in later on with some comments...


Ureteral stents are generally used in this type of surgery to better visualize and therefore protect the ureter during surgery, especially laparoscopic surgery. IIRC the stents are lighted in order to be very evident during dissection. Radical colectomy cuts very close to the ureter, so docs want to protect the structure during surgery.

Hope this helps. Nothing out of the ordinary for this type of surgery.

NHMike
Posts: 1723
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:43 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby NHMike » Tue Oct 24, 2017 2:50 pm

Pre-Op appointment.

I went to the Surgeon's office for the bowel prep kit. The assistant looked through a container of bags with names on it and didn't find one for me. She called around and said that it was waiting for me at the Pharmacy. I went to the Pharmacy with my Igloo cooler and ice pack and they gave me a bag and I put it in the cooler. It turns out that I didn't need to bring the cooler.

Then I went to the Pre-Op area. I filled out some forms and someone came out to say that there would be delays because a lot of people were late. The weather and traffic were awful this morning (and this at 5AM - 6AM when I came in) so they were pushing appointments out by 60-90 minutes. I had my laptop so I could work so that wasn't too much of a problem but I missed an event at the office that I had wanted to attend.

They took my vitals and sent me back to the waiting room. Then the Clinical Trial people (they want me to try VNX-149 which is a non-opioid painkiller) spoke to me and I gave them my questions. While in the meeting, the doctor called me over so I had a short examination and she talked about Clearfast and chewing gum. She gave me two bottles of Clearfast which is a carbohydrate drink that you take at 2 and 3 hours before surgery. They found that having carbs in your digestive system gets the bowels working or something and that this can cut days to weeks off a hospital stay for this stuff. I think that you guys already know about chewing gum though I'll have to supply it myself.

The IV nurse (that's the term 30 years ago) came and took 10 tubes of blood. 6 for the surgery, 4 for the clinical trial. I was a little worried that I wouldn't be able to walk out of there but it was drawn with a minimum of pain and discomfort.

Then I spoke to the Ostomy Nurse and this took the longest and she went over the bag, how it's attached, when it's changed, insurance coverage, ileostomy vs colostomy, vendors for the products, the visiting nurse stuff, diet, exercise, activity, intimate relations (not really an issue while I'm on chemo which will be for a while), clothes, air travel, cleaning, etc. Then she marked two spots on my abdomen for the surgeon and covered these with clear tape. She gave me spares in case the tape came off and some of the ink washed off. She gave me a rather large packet with suppliers for ostomy products. BTW, I asked what they cost and she said $200-$300 for a month's supply for ileostomy. More for Colostomy as you need more product.

She also gave me a bottle of some stuff that I'm supposed to shower with for the three days leading up to the surgery. This is supposed to help prevent stuff during surgery including MRSA. So it's kind of like antibiotics for your skin. It's supposed to be applied with a face cloth or small towel.

It looks like the day before the surgery will be quite busy doing the surgeon's prep (colonoscopy-style), Clearfast (called ERAS process), and the stuff for cleaning the skin. So I have the narrative version of what you guys are going through right now. I've kind of noticed that there aren't a lot of details about the ostomy products discussed here but it may be that it's discussed in far more detail at Ostomy forums, which the Ostomy nurse mentioned.

So I need to set up a timeline to do all of this stuff or just put it in my electronic calendar. I've been typing all of the pre-surgery documents into iCloud Notes so that I have it on my PC and phone and so that I can send it to my wife so that she knows what I'm facing. I didn't get a chance to ask them about personal items so I'm going to call admitting to ask them. Hopefully they know or can point me to who knows. What would be cool is if there were lockers in the lobby.
6/17: ER rectal bleeding; Colonoscopy
7/17: 3B rectal. T3N1bM0. 5.2 4.5 4.3 cm. Lymphs: 6 x 4 mm, 8 x 6, 5 x 5
7/17-9/17: Xeloda radiation
7/5: CEA 2.7; 8/16: 1.9; 9/8: 1.8; 11/30: 0.6; 12/20 1.4; 1/10 1.8; 1/31 2.2; 2/28 2.6; 4/10 2.8; 5/1 2.8; 5/29 3.2; 7/13 4.5; 8/9 2.8
MSS, KRAS G12D
10/17: 2.7 2.2 1.6 cm (-90%). Lymphs: 3 x 3 mm (-62.5%), 4 x 3 (-75%), 5 x 3 (-40%). 5.1 CM from AV
10/17: LAR, Temp Ileostomy, Path Complete Response
CapeOx (8) 12/17-6/18
7/18: Reversal, Port Removal

NHMike
Posts: 1723
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:43 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby NHMike » Tue Oct 24, 2017 2:58 pm

Lab Results today:

CBC and differential (everything within normal except RBC which was a little low)
PT-INR (normal)
PTT (normal)
Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (normal)
6/17: ER rectal bleeding; Colonoscopy
7/17: 3B rectal. T3N1bM0. 5.2 4.5 4.3 cm. Lymphs: 6 x 4 mm, 8 x 6, 5 x 5
7/17-9/17: Xeloda radiation
7/5: CEA 2.7; 8/16: 1.9; 9/8: 1.8; 11/30: 0.6; 12/20 1.4; 1/10 1.8; 1/31 2.2; 2/28 2.6; 4/10 2.8; 5/1 2.8; 5/29 3.2; 7/13 4.5; 8/9 2.8
MSS, KRAS G12D
10/17: 2.7 2.2 1.6 cm (-90%). Lymphs: 3 x 3 mm (-62.5%), 4 x 3 (-75%), 5 x 3 (-40%). 5.1 CM from AV
10/17: LAR, Temp Ileostomy, Path Complete Response
CapeOx (8) 12/17-6/18
7/18: Reversal, Port Removal

Aqx99
Posts: 403
Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:28 am
Facebook Username: aqx99
Location: Pfafftown, NC

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby Aqx99 » Tue Oct 24, 2017 6:01 pm

I plugged all of my prep stuff into my phone and set alarms to go off as each item needed to start.
Anne, 40
Stage IIIB Rectal Cancer
T3N1bM0
2/21/17 Dx, Age 39
2/21/17 CEA 0.9
3/23/17 - 5/2/17 Chemoradiation, 28 treatments
6/14/17 Robotic LAR w/temp loop ileostomy, ovaries & fallopian tubes removed, 2/21 lymph nodes positive
7/24/17 - 12/18/17 CapeOx, 6 Cycles
7/24/17 Dx w/ovarian cancer
9/6/17 CA 125 11.1
11/27/17 CEA 2.6
12/5/17 CT NED
12/13/17 CEA 2.9
1/11/18 CA 125 8.6
1/23/18 Reversal
3/21/18 CT enlarged thymus
4/6/18 PET NED
7/10/18 CT NED
7/11/18 CEA 2.6
9/18 Bilateral Prophylactic Mastectomy

NHMike
Posts: 1723
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:43 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby NHMike » Tue Oct 24, 2017 6:08 pm

Aqx99 wrote:I plugged all of my prep stuff into my phone and set alarms to go off as each item needed to start.


That's a lot of alarms. I've never tried to create that many but it should work.

I called Admitting and they said that I should arrive 2 hours before my surgery time so that's 5:30 AM with a drive time of 90 minutes. The issue is having to take the Clearfast two and three hours before surgery. I assume that the times can be sloppy though unless I'm the first surgery of the day. The surgeon booked the OR for four hours.

I wanted to try building a Javascript applet to display the timeline on a web page just for fun so that I could see the whole thing graphically.
6/17: ER rectal bleeding; Colonoscopy
7/17: 3B rectal. T3N1bM0. 5.2 4.5 4.3 cm. Lymphs: 6 x 4 mm, 8 x 6, 5 x 5
7/17-9/17: Xeloda radiation
7/5: CEA 2.7; 8/16: 1.9; 9/8: 1.8; 11/30: 0.6; 12/20 1.4; 1/10 1.8; 1/31 2.2; 2/28 2.6; 4/10 2.8; 5/1 2.8; 5/29 3.2; 7/13 4.5; 8/9 2.8
MSS, KRAS G12D
10/17: 2.7 2.2 1.6 cm (-90%). Lymphs: 3 x 3 mm (-62.5%), 4 x 3 (-75%), 5 x 3 (-40%). 5.1 CM from AV
10/17: LAR, Temp Ileostomy, Path Complete Response
CapeOx (8) 12/17-6/18
7/18: Reversal, Port Removal

NHMike
Posts: 1723
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:43 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby NHMike » Tue Oct 24, 2017 7:44 pm

I just put everything into Google Calendar. I asked my son at building a webpage with a timeline (I couldn't get an example to work) and he said that it had to be run in a webserver and he was going to show me how but he got busy.

The complexity of the day before and the day of the surgery, particularly in how early it is has me considering staying overnight at a hotel near the hospital. My original plan was to drive to my mother's house and take the subway to the hospital but the train doesn't run early enough to do that. The revised approach would be to go to my mother's in Sunday afternoon, take the train to a local hotel, do the remaining prep at the hotel and walk to the hospital early in the morning. There are some additional complexities but I will try to work them out.
6/17: ER rectal bleeding; Colonoscopy
7/17: 3B rectal. T3N1bM0. 5.2 4.5 4.3 cm. Lymphs: 6 x 4 mm, 8 x 6, 5 x 5
7/17-9/17: Xeloda radiation
7/5: CEA 2.7; 8/16: 1.9; 9/8: 1.8; 11/30: 0.6; 12/20 1.4; 1/10 1.8; 1/31 2.2; 2/28 2.6; 4/10 2.8; 5/1 2.8; 5/29 3.2; 7/13 4.5; 8/9 2.8
MSS, KRAS G12D
10/17: 2.7 2.2 1.6 cm (-90%). Lymphs: 3 x 3 mm (-62.5%), 4 x 3 (-75%), 5 x 3 (-40%). 5.1 CM from AV
10/17: LAR, Temp Ileostomy, Path Complete Response
CapeOx (8) 12/17-6/18
7/18: Reversal, Port Removal

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O Stoma Mia
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Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby O Stoma Mia » Tue Oct 24, 2017 8:41 pm

NHMike wrote:Pre-Op appointment...She also gave me a bottle of some stuff that I'm supposed to shower with for the three days leading up to the surgery. This is supposed to help prevent stuff during surgery including MRSA. So it's kind of like antibiotics for your skin. It's supposed to be applied with a face cloth or small towel.....

.
http://coloncancersupport.colonclub.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=54289&p=430747#p430747

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O Stoma Mia
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Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby O Stoma Mia » Wed Oct 25, 2017 3:20 am

NHMike wrote:...What would be cool is if there were lockers in the lobby.

In my hospital they have lockers, but they also have a very strict set of rules on the use of the lockers: Everything that you put in your locker has to be inventoried and witnessed by a third party.

For me, this was a problem on two fronts:

First, in order to place my wallet in the locker, I had to empty it of its contents and everything in each of the wallet pockets had to be registered in the legal inventory, by serial number or description, and countersigned by the hospital's witness. This included my drivers license, my bank cards, and everything else. Since I had just been to the ATM to get some cash, I had to itemize each and every bank note in my wallet by denomination and serial number, etc., etc.,

Second, I had brought all of my regular prescription drugs with me so that I could follow my GP's prescription while I was in the hospital. Well, they said that I would not be able to use any of my own prescription drugs, or OTC products (e.g., aspirin, acetaminophine, ..) while in the hospital, and that if I needed to have such medications while I was in the hospital the surgeon would prescribe them for me but I would have to buy them from the hospital pharmacy. So, they (temporarily) confiscated all of my medications and OTC products for the duration of my stay in the hospital. Anything I needed had to come from the hospital pharmacy, not from my own pre-purchased supply.

The main problem with this was that it took me over half an hour to complete the legal inventory and this delayed the start of my surgery.

But that was only half of the problem. After I got out of surgery, I had to sit with the witness and go over the inventory item by item to verify that everything that I had put in the locker was still there and intact. That delayed my transfer to the surgery recovery ward.

Your hospital will no doubt have a different procedure, but I thought that I would mention my experience anyway. You have about a week before your surgery. In this time you could discuss any of you concerns with the hospital Admissions staff to make sure that you understand what will happen to you and to your belongings once you check in to the hospital.

What I would suggest is that you come to the hospital with a combination padlock gym bag that is big enough to hold your street clothes and your other personal items such as cell phone, charger, computer, etc. Then when you have to change into the hospital gown and slippers, put all of your belongings in the locked,labeled gym bag and ask that it be sent to your room on the surgery recovery floor.

In any event, I would not describe my experience with our hospital locker room as "cool"...

NHMike
Posts: 1723
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:43 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby NHMike » Wed Oct 25, 2017 5:30 am

O Stoma Mia wrote:
NHMike wrote:...What would be cool is if there were lockers in the lobby.

In my hospital they have lockers, but they also have a very strict set of rules on the use of the lockers: Everything that you put in your locker has to be inventoried and witnessed by a third party.

For me, this was a problem on two fronts:

First, in order to place my wallet in the locker, I had to empty it of its contents and everything in each of the wallet pockets had to be registered in the legal inventory, by serial number or description, and countersigned by the hospital's witness. This included my drivers license, my bank cards, and everything else. Since I had just been to the ATM to get some cash, I had to itemize each and every bank note in my wallet by denomination and serial number, etc., etc.,

Second, I had brought all of my regular prescription drugs with me so that I could follow my GP's prescription while I was in the hospital. Well, they said that I would not be able to use any of my own prescription drugs, or OTC products (e.g., aspirin, acetaminophine, ..) while in the hospital, and that if I needed to have such medications while I was in the hospital the surgeon would prescribe them for me but I would have to buy them from the hospital pharmacy. So, they (temporarily) confiscated all of my medications and OTC products for the duration of my stay in the hospital. Anything I needed had to come from the hospital pharmacy, not from my own pre-purchased supply.

The main problem with this was that it took me over half an hour to complete the legal inventory and this delayed the start of my surgery.

But that was only half of the problem. After I got out of surgery, I had to sit with the witness and go over the inventory item by item to verify that everything that I had put in the locker was still there and intact. That delayed my transfer to the surgery recovery ward.

Your hospital will no doubt have a different procedure, but I thought that I would mention my experience anyway. You have about a week before your surgery. In this time you could discuss any of you concerns with the hospital Admissions staff to make sure that you understand what will happen to you and to your belongings once you check in to the hospital.

What I would suggest is that you come to the hospital with a combination padlock gym bag that is big enough to hold your street clothes and your other personal items such as cell phone, charger, computer, etc. Then when you have to change into the hospital gown and slippers, put all of your belongings in the locked,labeled gym bag and ask that it be sent to your room on the surgery recovery floor.

In any event, I would not describe my experience with our hospital locker room as "cool"...


Thanks for your experiences. I'll call Admitting and ask them about storage.
6/17: ER rectal bleeding; Colonoscopy
7/17: 3B rectal. T3N1bM0. 5.2 4.5 4.3 cm. Lymphs: 6 x 4 mm, 8 x 6, 5 x 5
7/17-9/17: Xeloda radiation
7/5: CEA 2.7; 8/16: 1.9; 9/8: 1.8; 11/30: 0.6; 12/20 1.4; 1/10 1.8; 1/31 2.2; 2/28 2.6; 4/10 2.8; 5/1 2.8; 5/29 3.2; 7/13 4.5; 8/9 2.8
MSS, KRAS G12D
10/17: 2.7 2.2 1.6 cm (-90%). Lymphs: 3 x 3 mm (-62.5%), 4 x 3 (-75%), 5 x 3 (-40%). 5.1 CM from AV
10/17: LAR, Temp Ileostomy, Path Complete Response
CapeOx (8) 12/17-6/18
7/18: Reversal, Port Removal

Chitra
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:12 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby Chitra » Wed Oct 25, 2017 6:37 am

I am really sorry and sad to know that. Please have courage and stay calm.
- Chitra Parekh (GMC Pvt. Ltd.)

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susie0915
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Facebook Username: Susan DeGrazia Hostetter
Location: Michigan

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby susie0915 » Wed Oct 25, 2017 2:23 pm

That was a long day for your pre op appointment. I do remember getting something to wash with in the shower before surgery, but I don't remember having something to drink. Sounds like you are very prepared and in charge. I know you're probably getting ready to get this done and move on with treatment. Wishing you didn't have to have the surgery, but wanting to get it done because the sooner you're treatment will be over. The recovery from my surgery wasn't too bad. Handling the ileostomy wasn't too difficult either. I think I was in the hospital for four days. I'm sure you are going to do very well. You are prepared, informed and in charge of your care.
58 yrs old Dx @ 55
5/15 DX T3N0MO
6/15 5 wks chemo/rad
7/15 sigmoid/scar tissue left
8/15 Pet scan NED
9/15 LAR
0/24 nodes
10/15 Bowel blockage. surgery,early ileo rev, c-diff inf :(
12/15 6 rds of xelox
5/16 Clear CT lung scarring/inflammation
9/16 clear colonoscopy
4/17 CT 4mm lung nod
7/17 no change lung nod
10/17 Clear pel/abd CT
11/17 CEA<.5
1/18 CT/Lung no change in 4mm nodule
5/18 CEA<.5, clear CT pel/abd/lung nod no change

NHMike
Posts: 1723
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:43 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby NHMike » Wed Oct 25, 2017 9:02 pm

I was reading about the distance from the AV and the impact on reversal in another thread so I decided to look it up and it's 5.1 CM and I'm not too sure what that means but it's higher than some and lower than others.
6/17: ER rectal bleeding; Colonoscopy
7/17: 3B rectal. T3N1bM0. 5.2 4.5 4.3 cm. Lymphs: 6 x 4 mm, 8 x 6, 5 x 5
7/17-9/17: Xeloda radiation
7/5: CEA 2.7; 8/16: 1.9; 9/8: 1.8; 11/30: 0.6; 12/20 1.4; 1/10 1.8; 1/31 2.2; 2/28 2.6; 4/10 2.8; 5/1 2.8; 5/29 3.2; 7/13 4.5; 8/9 2.8
MSS, KRAS G12D
10/17: 2.7 2.2 1.6 cm (-90%). Lymphs: 3 x 3 mm (-62.5%), 4 x 3 (-75%), 5 x 3 (-40%). 5.1 CM from AV
10/17: LAR, Temp Ileostomy, Path Complete Response
CapeOx (8) 12/17-6/18
7/18: Reversal, Port Removal

User avatar
O Stoma Mia
Posts: 1450
Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 6:29 am

Re: Rectal cancer (Stage 3A) diagnosed late June 2017

Postby O Stoma Mia » Thu Oct 26, 2017 12:09 am

For your hospital stay, what I would recommend is to plan, in advance, which of your personal items you will want to put on your rolling over-bed table.

When you return from surgery you will likely be encumbered with all sorts of tubes and other items (drain tube, urinary catheter, IV lines, epidural catheter, stoma bag, and maybe an oxygen tube or NG tube, etc.). In any event, you will probably be in a bit of pain and will not be able to move around freely to fetch things from elsewhere in the hospital room. For the first couple of days, everything you need should be arranged on your over-bed table, since this will probably be the only place that you can easily access while in bed.

What I would suggest for this is:

1. Ear plugs and face mask -- in case you have a roommate who snores or who wants to run the TV all night.
2. A small flashlight -- so that you can have a light to see things at night after they have turned off the overhead room light.
3. A pen and notepad -- for writing down the names of all the medications that they bring to you - for future reference.
4. A small container for keeping the medications that they give you for the night.
5. Another small container (e.g., the top of an old shoe box) for arranging the small items so that they don't roll off the table
6. A glow-in-the-dark alarm clock (or a wrist watch) -- so that you can tell what time it is at night.
7. Your cell-phone, and charger with extension cord that can reach the wall outlet.
8. A plastic water glass (or a small, refillable water bottle)
9. A small packet of Kleenex, wet-wipes, or paper towel / wash cloth/ etc.
10. Eye glasses case (if applicable)
11. Your pocket diary or calendar (if applicable)
12. Your laptop computer (if there is enough room left for it to fit on the table)
13. Pack of chewing gum

Also, be sure to ask them to set up or fasten the nurse call button so that it is easily accessible to you in bed and so that you don't have to lean over to reach the telephone night stand to call the nurse.


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