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How an appendectomy can ruin a perfectly good day.

I’m currently on day 5 on the road to recovery after a laparoscopic appendectomy; that’s a fancy way of saying I got my appendix taken out. I’m moving around quite well and most of my pain is gone.

Lucky we found it early and nothing burst. I hear that if it bursts, the person is in more pain, spends more time in the hospital and it takes longer to recover. So it sounds like I’ve got it easy compared to some.

It all started on a Wednesday. I was at work and just had lunch. I was sitting in a meeting and I had a pain down by my stomach. I thought that my stomach just didn’t like what I had for lunch and I was hoping that a trip to the bathroom would make things better; but it didn’t. I then went to a second meeting hoping that the pain would go away, but no luck. On to my third meeting and the only thing I could think was I hope this meeting ends soon so I can go home.

What did it feel like? It felt like someone grabbed my stomach and just squeezed as hard as they could and wouldn’t let go. It almost felt nauseating. I was hot and cold and was even shaking a little. I couldn’t take my mind off the pain and I just wanted it to go away.

On my way home I started to feel tingley and decided to stop at the urgent care instead of heading home. Probably the best idea I had all day.

It took a few tests and a couple of hours before they diagnosed me, but lying down and the pain medication really helped me feel better. By the time I got the verdict, I was feeling all better. However, the appendix still has to come out.

I got my surgery scheduled and admitted to the hospital that night. A quick hello with the doctors and then they put me out. Next thing I knew everything was over and I was ready to go to bed for the night.

The next morning was hard as I was hooked up to an IV, in a hospital bed, sore, a little disoriented and my underwear was missing. However things went well and I was home by noon and playing Angry Birds on the iPad.

The recovery pain isn’t to bad, I think my mind thought it was worse than it was. Each day got a little better and by day 5 I’m feeling pretty darn good. Still walking kind of slow and if I have to bend over, I look pretty strange.

The biggest thing that helped me was to keep moving. I got up a few times a day and walked around the house. No stairs, but to the kitchen and back. Something that helped ensure that my muscles didn’t stiffen up.

I did do stairs on day 3 and they were no big deal. Getting in and our of a car wasn’t horrible either, but I still probably look pretty funny as I worry about hurting something more than anything actually hurt.

Overall I’d say that the worst pain happens before surgery. And recovery isn’t too bad as long as your appendix didn’t burst.

I still have weeks to go. Yes weeks. The only real restriction I have is that I can’t lift more than 20 pounds and I can’t take a bath (shower is OK) or go in a pool for two weeks. However, at day 5, things are going pretty darn well.

For doctors having no idea what an appendix does, it sure does cause problems when it gets mad.

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