Surgery Date and Time: Monday, March 23rd, 2015 at 8:00am
I have to start off by saying that I was not prepared for this surgery! The only other procedure even close to a laparoscopy (Here’s a link if you don’t know what this procedure is: http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/laparoscopy-16156) would have been getting my wisdom teeth removed about 6 years prior. I completely underestimated the effect it would have on my body as well as the recovery time, and admittedly both my doctor and my mother noticed it. My mom even flew down to Alabama from Chicago on a few days notice to take care of me, even though I insisted that I would be fine and up and moving in a few days. Nope. (By the way, if anyone cares about the drug I was put to sleep with, it was a propofol sedation, which I’ve had before with my wisdom teeth and no problems.)
I was told it was supposed to be a 20-30 minute surgery but mine ended up taking almost 3 hours. My doctor would have kept going but I was loosing too much blood and she didn’t want to give me a transfusion. She couldn’t even find my uterus until she moved around all of my organs because my cyst (6 cm) was so big! It had grown in my left Fallopian tube, completely destroying it. The tube was removed. My left ovary was destroyed because she had to cut into it, but left it in because I am only 22 years old. It was clear to my doc that I had Endometriosis as well, which none of us expected. She noticed my right ovary was enlarged but she wasn’t sure why. Obviously she didn’t have time to investigate. *Hence my second cyst noticed after an ultrasound a few days ago. More details to come!*
So back to the cyst. She took some amazing pictures of it but had barely grazed it with one of the tools in my belly when it exploded. It was one of those endometrial ovarian cysts, also known as chocolate cysts due to the color of the material inside. It was clear that if I had waited even just 1 more day for surgery, that the cyst would have probably ruptured on its own, causing a trip to the ER and emergency surgery.
Recovery and an Overnight Stay
I stayed in the hospital, and thank god I did! I stayed in a nice morphine “coma” until about 4 am. I would wake up for about a half hour but then dose off to sleep again. I remember having these weird things on my legs that felt like a constant blood pressure wrap in order to keep the blood clots from forming. I’m really happy my mom went to the hotel to sleep because I don’t think she could have put up with what happened at 4 am….
My catheter was removed at around 2 am and I was informed that if I peed, I could leave. So at 4 am, I pressed the call button. But it wasn’t just because I had to pee. The morphine had worn off and the nurses were trying to move me over to the prescribed pain pills. I have never cried or screamed out in pain like I did that morning. I had the nurses come running! I couldn’t move! Or at least I swore I couldn’t move. I had this one nurse that grabbed me and looked me in the eye and said “We are going to move you, whether you want to or not”! We linked hands and I told her to just pull, pull me to my feet. I screamed and cried and then screamed some more, but eventually I got to my feet, and then to my own private bathroom. I actually didn’t lay down again until after I left the hospital because I was so scared I might not be able to get up again. What made it so difficult was the fact that I didn’t move anything below my abdomen until it was time to get up. That plus the air in my abdomen trying to leave my body naturally led to the debilitating pain I felt. If I ever have this type of surgery again, I’ll be walking around in my morphine coma, way before the next morning!
Post-surgery, I was diagnosed with Endometriosis. Even though the samples taken to the lab didn’t show any endo cells, my doc is 100% sure I have the disease (based on what she saw). I completely trust her opinion and recommendations. So the next step after removing my stitches and recovering completely was to start a hormone therapy shot treatment called Lupron Depot. I’ve been on the shot for almost 1 month now and will be on it for a total of 7 months. This treatment is supposed to shut everything down and put me into a state of menopause. I have to say, it is pretty weird being 22 years old and teaching my mother about menopause!! This will not only help with the endometriosis but also any other cysts that might form. I am still not on birth control but will begin after the shots. I had my first shot on Monday, April 6th, 2015, which was just a month long injection. I’ll be getting my second one, which is a 3 month long shot on Monday, May 4th, 2015.
Latest Update (04/24/2015)
My stitches came out perfectly and my scars have healed. I am so thankful for my doctor’s ability to cut tiny holes (except for the bottom one, but no one can see it 🙂 ) and tie tight stitches. Some of the pictures on the internet are just plain scary!
I came to the office on Tuesday, April 21st, 2015 for a normal pelvic exam and pap smear. Everything went great and I had a trans-vaginal ultrasound just to be safe. That was when it all came crashing down again…. I have a 5 cm cyst inside my right ovary (my only good one), along with a few smaller (less than 2 cm) ones. The fact that I might have to have another surgery and possibly loose my right ovary as well is petrifying. Can’t I just graduate college and find a big kid job?! I’m praying these shots help to reduce the size of the cyst so no surgery is needed. This cyst is different from the other one. The technician told me it looks like a hemorrhagic ovarian cyst filled with blood. This one is more common. The pain has been different and of course way less intense, but it’s in the same exact spot of my pelvis, just on the right side. I go back soon for another ultrasound to see if the cyst has shrunk any. If not, I’ll probably need to schedule another surgery (it’s been just over a month since my last!). So we’ll see…. more updates to come. 🙂