Surgery survivor! All good news...
As some of you know I was last here on 11/13. Had surgery 11/18. They removed only the left side of my thyroid, as the nodule which had atypical biopsy results was on that side, & I had only cysts on the right side. Pathologist thought benign on frozen section; final report confirmed benign. No complications, no damage to recurrent laryngeal nerve, no damage to parathyroids, no calcium problem.I'm to have repeat ultrasound & TSH in 3 months--if anything grows bigger, I'll have to have surgery to remove the right side. If I feel tired I'm supposed to call up & get prescription for thyroid hormone. So far so good!
Surgery: bottom line: EASY. Couldn't eat/drink anything incl. water from midnite on & surgery scheduled for 1 p.m. Thursday, so had a terrific headache by late a.m. from dehydration/caffeine deprivation. They gave me IV fluids & 2 tylenol w/a sip of water. IV fluids made me feel less pathetic but headache persisted. Got going about 2:30 p.m. I think--they got me into operating room & I was just about to climb on to the operating table when the nurse said she was giving me Versed in IV--then lights out until I woke up (sort of) in recovery room. Still had headache. No pain at surgery site. Sore throat, hurt to swallow--this I understand is from the breathing tube inserted during surgery. One drain left in. Became fully aware at about 6 p.m. I think, in hosp room. Liquid dinner--jello etc. Lots of fooling around with IV antibiotics, drain suction, trying to pee, & so on, mixed with interesting conversations with one of my roommates who was much sicker than I. I was wide awake, but the nurse made me turn out lites & TV at 11 p.m. I took one of 2 Vicodin they said I could have, not because of any surg. pain but still had awful headache. Didn't work, so I took the other one about 1:30 a.m. Threw up at 3, they shot Fenergan into my IV for nausea, & I was fast asleep from about 5 to 6:30 when a whole gang of drs. came in to see my other roommate & put all the lights on! Well, as I said, I didn't care because I wasn't sleepy anyway. I think maybe the headache was gone by then. Never did take another pain killer--no pain. I stayed over another night because they were giving me antibiotics IV while I still had the drain in, and they didn't want to remove until the drainage was less than 30 ml/day. No big deal, but drove my hubby nuts as he was staying in Motel 6 & they said I could go & then said I couldn't go. Personally I was just as happy to stay--felt weird (mentally--too many poison gases I guess!). Slept soundly, (except for nurse interruption at 3 a.m. to take bp & at 5 a.m. to hang antibiotics) & left hospital Sat. a.m.
Sat I took 2 naps, Sun one nap, Mon no naps. Sat I can't remember, but Sunday & Monday I know I didn't feel like myself--felt depressed & uninterested & tired, but better every day. Hurt to swallow, but each day improved. (Somehow it didn't ever hurt to swallow when I was eating food! Ha ha.) I think that lasted about a week. Mood returned to normal on Tuesday, the 5th day after surgery, as did energy level, & has been 100 % since. Never did fill Vicodin prescription: took 2 tylenol when I got home from the hospital & that was it. Never any pain at incision site, but feels funny--numb to the touch, but when I swallow, I can feel a sort of "tugging" on the front of my neck--surgeon says this will last about 3 months. Was able to turn head without discomfort also on Tuesday so driving no problem. Haven't seen incision yet--still has tape on it, I'm supposed to wait for it to fall off. Can't be more than a couple of inches long.
So to all who helped me so much during the run-up to this surgery, THANK YOU! & to all who are contemplating it--I gotta say, it was no big deal! I did my homework, got a surgeon who does 150 to 200 thyroid/parathyroid operations per year. I think it was harder on hubby than on me.
One oddball thing: my nodule was 2.5 cm in largest dimension on ultrasound, but the path report states 1.1 cm in largest dimension. Either it grows & shrinks, or ultrasound isn't very accurate!