Preparation for Surgery

“Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:15-16.



Preparing for mom’s Surgery:

Since I have been through the experience recently, would like to discuss some points on better preparing for surgery.  When I took my mom to her exploratory surgery, it didn’t seem like it was a big deal. I don’t remember doing much preparation for it. They knew she had a tumor, but they wanted to explore and see if maybe that one had come from somewhere else. They decided they needed to explore her lungs since she seemed to have a lot of respiratory issues.  I don’t remember her being offered anything else, scans or CTs, or anything like that. She’d had some other tests and they knew about a tumor there, but they wanted to be sure what they were dealing with. I had kids at home, hubby was at work and no other siblings were available to help. I took her to the hospital and we checked in.

When she went back to prep for surgery, she assured me she was ok. I left to go home and check on the kids. After making sure everything was running smoothly, I left to go back to the hospital(thankfully it was close by). I saw people checking in and out and after an extremely long time, I went and asked again. Finally someone went back and checked, my mom was done, and they called for me earlier to tell me?  I didn’t think they could possibly have done it the brief time I had gone home, but surgery was finished. She had bled a lot(she had anemia) and that worried them so they had tried to call for me; but hadn’t found anything else suspicious. I was thankful she came through it alright; but it still worried me.

Preparing for hubby’s surgery

More recently, my husband had surgery…I remember it seemed to take a long time.  We read, followed doctor instructions, took tests and made arrangements ahead of time. On the day of, only a few people were in the waiting room so there didn’t seem like there was a big backlog or anything, but waiting seemed forever.  I had gone to the bathroom, walked down the hall a couple times, gone and looked at the farmer’s market outside the building, and even been to Starbuck’s to coffee with a couple friends who came to visit.  When I went back in, I saw other people go in to see their loved ones.  I busied myself looking at my kindle as I sat next to my daughter and son.  I was thankful that they were there.  It was comforting not to be alone.

At last the nurse came out and said the doctor was ready to talk to me and I went into the meeting room.  He came out and told me everything had gone fine with the surgery, but had my hubby been complaining of his other hip yet?  I told him, yes, he had but it wasn’t that bad yet. Anyway, he told me the surgery was fine but his left side was actually shorter than his right and they tried to make up for it by making the part a little bit longer also.  He should be okay, he probably won’t even notice.  I thanked him and had to wait a little while before he came out of the anesthesia , but I was relieved that at last it was over and everything went well.

It took him a while to wake from surgery so they awoke him and transferred him to another room.  There they took his vitals and ordered him food.  He couldn’t eat much so he gave it to my son.  A physical therapist came in and helped to be able to get up and go to the bathroom.  They explained about his medications and gave instructions on what he should to do at home to care for his wound, and his mobility limitations. When he was able to take a walk down the hallway, they said he could go home.  It was about 4:30 pm after being there by 6 am. It made for quite a day. The healing process was about to start.

In thinking about those two different experiences, I realize there are things one can do to be better prepared for surgery, or help their loved one be prepared.  Sometimes it happens suddenly in crisis, but when it is planned; we can take steps to get ready for it. There is a very good chance that as we get older, we will be facing surgeries of one kind or another. Let’s look at some points to prepare for surgery.

  1.  Pray for wisdom and guidance.  Don’t neglect getting divine wisdom and guidance, it could make all the difference in the world.
  2. Inform yourself. Find out as much as you can about your surgery. What will happen before, during, after surgery. Get information from the doctor. Look up information online, watch videos if possible. Find out about any other options available to you and what results to expect.
  3. Talk to others who have had the same or similar surgery. Find out what went well and what helped them make it through.
  4. If your surgery involves a limb like shoulder, knee, hip and it is possible; then do exercise to strengthen it as it will help the recovery period go much quicker and easier.
  5.  Make arrangements to have someone to take you,be there with you for support if possible and be able to take you home. Follow doctor instructions as much as possible.
  6. Lastly, have some prepared meals ahead of time to cook if you have no one who is cooking for you and/or for taking you to post check up appts. if you cannot drive yourself.

Beyond all these points, be prepared to wait.  No matter who or the type of surgery, waiting always part of the process. Thanks for reading my points on ways to prepare for surgery. I hope they will help you the next time you may face surgery.  Feel free to leave on comment on anything else you did to prepare, or how these might have helped you.

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Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.   Martin Luther King, Jr.

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