Today was ultrasound day, hopefully just a formality, but nevertheless an important one if we were still to craft our departure on Saturday.
The risk of blood clots increases with surgery but particularly with this surgery where you are immobile for a longer period of time the risk is higher.
In the early days whilst you are immobile circulation boots are fitted. (Whilst they may be effective they are also another strand in the lack of sleep offensive, as they click and hiss and squeak with annoying frequency)
This Allied with the Japanese schoolgirl stockings and regular movement (when able) is all part of the ‘anti clotting strategy’.
So I briefly escaped earlier and was taken by a lovely porter to the ultrasound department. Oh to be free from the confines of the ward. I got to see parts of the hospital that were hitherto unknown to me. The smell of bleach, alcohol gel and incontinence permeating my nostrils as I whisked through the corridors. As we passed reception the front door opened and for a brief fleeting moment my lungs were filled with icy cold, crisp FRESH AIR. Oh how i’ve missed that.
As we sat in Ultrasound it suddenly occurred to me that I was wearing no undergarments.
“Do they just scan my calf’s?”
“No, your whole leg, thigh right down”
“I’ve not got any boxer shorts on, they’ll have to give me a gown”
“They might not have any, we might have to be inventive”
Thankfully the sonographer took kindly to my predicament and someone was dispatched for a towel . Mrs C suggested they ‘get a flannel’ (always the comedian).
The scan itself is pretty innocuous in the greater scheme of stuff that is done to you. Those of a ticklish disposition may find it ticklish but the pressure of the transducer on the legs displaces any of those feelings.
Thankfully no clots were found and veins were in good order generally. Tick
Annoyingly no matter how much I pressed him he wouldn’t tell me the sex of the baby, judging by the size of my belly it’s twins.
It’s just my final ‘show and tell’ with the Stoma nurse and we are good to go.
Before my surgery it was explained to me that due to the location of the tumour and the intricate surgery required to successfully remove it there may be a risk to certain nerves that affect well, certain ‘man functions’.
- Establishing and cessation of a sound urine flow
- Establishing an erection
- Achieving orgasm
In the greater scheme of things I considered this to be a small price to pay to stay alive. It wouldn’t be my first choice but worse things happen at sea. It would also be the great unknown, in so far as I would not know definitively after surgery if these had been affected but more over as each is ‘demanded’.
The first test was on removal of the catheter, the agonising 4 hour delay until ‘first water’ was hell on earth but when the first and subsequent ‘pee’s’ happened it was pure bliss, so much so that to prove beyond reasonable doubt that I was firmly in the driving seat I would stop and start mid flow grinning smugly as I did so.
Ok, so the wee function is ‘A’ ok that just leaves, well , umm..
Let’s be honest over the last few days ‘conjugal relations’ have not been at the forefront of my mind. That region has been very much in retreat, indeed I am sure whilst subject to a catheter that the old chap questioned it’s own future.
That was about to change.
My new sleeping pattern now means I sleep most of the night, soundly, or as soundly as you can in these surroundings. Yesterday was no exception, I awoke at 6:30, on my back, arms confidently above my head.
Taking in the sounds from around the ward whilst I stared into space I suddenly realised that something had happened, something had awoken from its slumber, no I wasn’t dreaming ‘you beauty!’ I thought, ‘thank you god’
But no, god, no, at the same time as I reflected in my morning glory I see the silhouette of the night staff out side the door assembling the blood pressure ‘Obs’ equipment.
Swift ‘time till entrance’ calculations were permeated in my head, I had 20 seconds at best, ’20 seconds that’s not enough’.
Now panicking my eyes are dancing around the bed to look for cover, covered only in a single sheet I quickly pulled up the covering blanket… it hasn’t worked. God now what?!
‘Anne Widdecombe Anne widdecombe Anne Widdecombe’
Never before has such a graphic picture been painted in a mans head.
It worked, the combination of the standard issue NHS blanket and the ‘Anne Widdecombe’ anaphrodisiac saved my blushes. Obs undertaken, staff none the wiser, reputation intact.
Welcome to a new bright new day.
That just leaves, No. 3, . I think we are a bit way off that one yet, but, well let’s keep some things sacred.