April 05, 2013

Nothing is EVER Simple (UPDATED)

Well, today I went to get my stones removed. It did not go well.
Below the fold is a rather graphic description of my day.

I suggest you read Gone to Amerikay instead.


 My surgery was rescheduled to 6:30 AM today in part so that i could be used as the subject of a training class.  I arrived 45 minutes early for my Lithotropy. This is a procedure that uses sonic blasts to destroy the offending rocks that have built up in the kidney. After an extended discussion of the procedure by the sonar tech (the surgeon was stuck in traffic) I was wheeled into the operating theater and moved into various uncomfortable positions only to be told that the large stone that had been giving me so much trouble was not actually reachable by the sonar equipment available at that hospital. Specifically, this stone was not in the kidney and was at the deepest point in the body a stone can be.the 'sonar tech' was uncomfortable trying to make the shot. 
I was told that I could be rescheduled in two or three weeks in the hopes that the stone would have moved to a better location.

All stop.

But wait. The surgeon and the 'sonar tech' became rather alarmed as they examined my X-rays and ultra-sounds. The surgeon did not do a lot of lithotropies and was overseeing my procedure primarily to maintain his certification.  He is however a renal specialist and he noted that the stone had not moved in 3 weeks. Also, my left kidney was swollen. He became concerned that the pain I'd been experiencing the last two months was much more serious than thought. To be precise, he was concerned that the left kidney was completely blocked and the pain I'd felt had been from pressure rather than cutting.

The doctor contacted a surgeon at a nearby hospital who was able to work me in as an emergency case (the original doctor's schedule being full). I thus ended up in Chesapeake General being prepped for a much less benign procedure that involves  sending a laser wrong way up a one way street.

On top of this my BP was elevated. A LOT. (both readings had three digits) This precipitated a 'spirited debate' between the surgeon and Annie's Theologist. Daddy Warbucks you see, wanted to put me on BP medicine while the surgeon felt this was unwise. He was growing concerned that the first surgeons worries about me were largely correct. He felt that if Annie's Theologist filled me full of date rape drugs AND lowered my BP that my BP would crash catastrophically in the event my BP was elevated due to renal-plumbing issue-itis.

Annie's Theologist put me under and followed the instructions under protest...loud...worrisome demoralizing protest, protest that apparently continued after I'd slipped into unconsciousness because the nurses were talking about it when

Well, I am told that there were "complications". The stone was indeed impacted...badly...and not all of it could be completely removed during the procedure both because of the risk of tearing the urethra wall into which it had grown and because the surgery had become much more complex and lengthy (going from 30 minutes to nearly two hours). The stone was broken up however, and a stint was inserted to keep the fluid pathway open and the urethra stitched together..  This stint can't remain in and will have to be removed. Hopefully this will happen Monday. Additionally, when Annie's Theologist stuck a respirator down my tube he tore my right tonsil in the process.

As an aside my BP remained alarmingly high until my first excruciatingly painful and bloody urination...at which point it immediately dropped to a happy norm.

Annie's Theology=Inferior.

Leaping Lizards! We're in a cult! Sandy...go get help!

As of now I'm practically mute. The excruciating pain of my lacerated throat however does distract from the intense pain of my urinary tract and frequent, agonizing utilizations thereof...which also tend to pass sharp fragments of the stone as they work themselves loose.

It seems I was much sicker than thought. However, I should make a full recovery and be much better than before.

Oh one final thing.

To facilitate removing the stint I now have a thread extending out of my manhood and halfway up the pee-path. This proved to be very adept at snagging on my zipper a few minutes ago which precipitated a most ungentlemanly scream.

The weekend looks to be rather awkward.

I think I've corrected all the pain/drug/spellcheck induced misspellings in the post now (No one nationalized my urethra for instance).

UPDATE: 17 hours after the previous post I'm having to walk sideways like a crab everywhere due to pain. I can still barely talk above a whisper. I'm still passing a good deal of blood.

OTOH I have no fever at he moment, the pain is not nearly as constant and the painful jagged chunks of stone have stopped passing for now. The swelling of my abdomen has reduced somewhat.

Praise be unto science because this sort of thing killed people until recently..  Note that Emperor Meiji died of renal failure caused by kidney stone blockage in 1912. Presumably he got the best care then available.

I may end up being laid up unable to work for a week or more, but I'll recover fully.

We've come a long way in a short time. We should be very wary of screwing with the system that brought us here...as we are scheduled to do in earnest  next year.

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 11:35 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment
Post contains 932 words, total size 6 kb.

1 Oh, that hurts just to read.

Posted by: Wonderduck at Fri Apr 5 23:41:49 2013 (9jITs)

2 I feel bad for you having to go though all that; OTOH, I'm glad they caught the problem in time.  The part of your ordeal that scared me the most was the blood pressure thing; if "Annie's Theologist" was correct, I'm guessing you stood a big risk of having a heart attack or a stroke on the operating table.  Also, it boggles my mind that the doctors would debate/argue the issue in front of the patient like that; that must have caused some anxiety for you!

Praise be unto science because this sort of thing killed people until recently.

Preach it, brother.  I had my appendix out a few years back--a relatively trivial process (especially compared to what you went through!), but I wonder how many people died of appendicitis before the advent of modern medicine.

Posted by: Peter the Not-so-Great at Sat Apr 6 21:22:49 2013 (ElBzz)

3 Oh my.  Thanks to the doctors and the scientists and engineers behind them.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at Sun Apr 7 01:17:48 2013 (PiXy!)

4 Oh, criminy, that sounds bad. Just glad you're okay.

Posted by: Suburbanbanshee at Sun Apr 7 14:49:08 2013 (cvXSV)


Had the kidney stone experience three years ago. It wasn't such a shambles as yours sounds to have been, but the stone was definitely impacted, and the urologist who finally treated me privately after some weeks of waiting in the queue in the Australian public health system was - rather concerned - at the danger that the delay had exposed my blocked and swollen kidney to (with the prospect of further weeks of waiting if I hadn't gone private). So, yes - screwing with the system? Bad idea. What if "private" hadn't been an option?

You'll probably have blood as long as the stent's in - I did. The good news is, that once it comes out, everything should get back to normal very quickly.

Posted by: EdwardM at Sun Apr 7 23:40:19 2013 (Y/DdB)

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