Surgery day

Today was surgery day for The Yankee. Last fall she had a corrective procedure to repair popliteal artery entrapment syndrome in her left leg. Today it’s the right, from which the surgeon will remove a bit of muscle from the back of the leg, both above and below the knee, to allow the artery to sit in the correct position, improving circulation.

If you haven’t heard of it, join the club. We’ve learned a lot in the last year or so. It’s such a rare and exotic thing that it took her almost took 20 years to get the correct diagnosis. The last doctor she saw, hilariously, said “It sounds like popliteal artery entrapment syndrome, but I don’t think you have it.” That medical practitioner didn’t stay in the rotation very long.

The specialist, and we see the guy at the Cleveland Clinic, did the procedure on her left leg in October. She was weight bearing the next day, and took increasingly longer walks for two weeks before PT began, leading to a near-perfect recovery. I’m expecting the same results this time.

We’re staying at a hotel a block away. She did pre-op yesterday, and we woke up at dark-thirty this morning to walk over, but not before I made the joke about how I’m looking forward to going back to work so I can sleep in until 7:30 every morning.

The walk seems shorter this time. The tension is a bit lighter. It’s still a surgery, but you know what to expect. There was a bit more sleep last night, for instance, and though it is colder, it doesn’t seem as scary.

In the hospital, we walked by a deconstructed escalator. If you’ve ever wondered, here’s your chance.

At check-in the two ladies giggled at a joke I made. They remembered it all day and took good care of me because if it.

Fifty minutes after the surgery began I got a message to report to the desk for an update from the surgeon. The lady at the front took me to the little room meeting room, where I saw the doctor again. Everything went well, he said, just as before.

I stepped outside to call my in-laws. “Good news! Everything went great! I’ll get to go upstairs and be with her in a few minutes!” Sent a few texts saying the same things. This is where I stood making that same call last October.

I stood in the same place today. What a difference five months makes, for most of us.

We sat in recovery long enough to design an interesting research project. When she got to her room she crutched her way around, before returning to the bed without even using them. Weight bearing four hours after surgery.

And the rest of the day we spent in the room. I think I dozed off, which was probably more rest than she got this afternoon. Of course, she had anesthesia this morning, so call it a push.

Visiting hours end at 9 p.m., which means I had to make the sad walk back to the hotel room all by myself. We bought food yesterday for dinner today and, in between giving recommendation phone calls for students, I didn’t notice the mini-fridge was turned all the way up. My chicken is frozen. And I am trying to coax the wimpiest microwave in Ohio to get this frozen chunk of food to room temperature.

(It took nine minutes.)

Tomorrow, The Yankee should get discharged, and we’ll spent an easy day lazing around the hotel room. They want to keep us close by for one more day, just to make sure everything continues to progress as it should. It will.

Comments are closed.