My experience of a laparoscopy




Finally, Monday was the day I had my laparoscopy and seeing as we're now a couple of days along, I thought I'd share my experiences to date. Spoiler alert: it wasn't the easiest hospital experience I've had and some of it came across as being quite shambolic.

I had to be at the hospital for 11am, after phoning an hour before to check that there was a bed for me. Oh how I laughed at the irony of this when I got there.  I was shown to the ward to wait for my operation, where there were no beds, only chairs. And that is where I had to stay for 3 hours whilst waiting to go to theatre.  

After an hour or so of being sat down, the anaethetist came to see me and went through what would happen and I was able to share some of my anxieties with her. She put me at ease and listened to what I had to say.  Approximately an hour after that, I met the consultant who I took an immediate dislike to. I found him to be quite sharp, abrupt and he didn't put me at ease at all.  We had a heated discussion over contraception and he then told me that either himself or his registrar would be around to speak to me after and confirm how the operation had gone and what had been done. Sometime after that, the nurse came to take my stats and told me she would let me know when I needed to put my gown and compression stockings on.  There must have been some miscommunication, because the next thing I knew, quite some time later, a different nurse came to fetch me for theatre and asked me why I wasn't in my gown and stockings.  I explained that someone was going to let me know when I needed to get ready and then she stood and watched as I started to undress, before saying she would return. As she walked away, I heard her huffing and complaining to another nurse about my not being ready. As you might imagine, after three hours of being sat in a very uncomfortable chair, this got my back up a little.  

We eventually walked down to the theatre where I was greeted by the friendliest team that I could have met.  They could see how anxious I was and immediately helped to put me at ease when I explained why and I will forever be thankful for that - that and the fact they found my vein successfully on the first attempt (high five that man!).  After that, the next thing I remember was being wheeled into recovery, where my compression stockings were removed and I was told I would be given clexane injections instead.  When I asked the nurse watching me if anything had been found, she told me that that consultant would come round to see me and shortly after that, I was returned to the ward.

As soon as I got back to the ward, one of the nurses came to take my stats and to ask me if I wanted something to eat. I still felt a bit groggy so declined but accepted the cup of tea offered. After being left alone for a while, I was offered another cup of tea before being told that I had to have something to eat, something to drink (done) and a wee before I would be allowed home so I asked if I was allowed to get dressed, so that I could get up for a wee. I was told that was fine, they closed the curtains and I slowly got up to find that I had bled on the bed, which as you can imagine was somewhat of a shock as I wasn't given any indication that might happen.  Once dressed, I made my way to the toilet and spoke to the nurse, who gave me a sanitary pad.  Again, I bled but this time passing large clots, which filled me with the fear of haemorrhage again so when I came out, I spoke to the nurse in the hope they would calm my fears but he wasn't helpful when I asked if this was to be expected, responding with something along the line of "I don't know, probably". 

Half an hour later or so, the nurse came up to me with my discharge form and told me I was free to go. I asked what the consultant had said, he looked at the form and told me nothing was found and that I was able to go downstairs and wait to be collected. This was despite me being told that I was strictly not allowed to lift anything but as he had disappeared to talk to someone else, I couldn't speak to him but at this point, I'd had enough and was ready to leave so I slowly made my way downstairs.

Upon getting home and reflecting upon the whole experience and now, a few days later, I have to say that I am disappointed with the care I received:

1 - Being left to wait on an uncomfortable chair for three hours and not being told until the last minute that I was going to theatre.

2 - When I came round, my stockings were removed and I was told about the injections. I was discharged with neither mentioned and I didn't realise until I got home. I telephoned the ward to speak with them and was made to call back several times whilst they checked the position, with them eventually calling me back at 10.30pm to confirm that neither were needed.

3 - I wasn't given any advice about the stitches, whether they would dissolve, if I needed to keep them covered etc or when I would be able to shower.

4 - Neither the registrar or consultant came to speak with me so although I know I had a diagnostic laparoscopy, I know nothing else and I don't know what my next step is.  Referral to the chronic pain clinic was mentioned at a previous appointment - does that need to be done by them, do I need to request it? Is there anything else we can look at?  

5 - I shouldn't have been left to walk downstairs alone. Not only was I not meant to be carrying anything but all advice tells you not to be left alone after having a general anaesthetic and you are told to be collected by someone.

6 - Nothing was said to me about painkillers, whether I needed any to take home and no advice was given as to recovery. 

Four days on and I'm feeling tired and sore. My stomach is black in places and very sore and tender.  I'm trying to be careful not to lift anything but in all honesty, its proving difficult. Despite the lack of energy to do anything, I'm finding it hard not to feel as though I'm wasting my days at home, when usually I would be keeping busy. I've been doing lots of puzzles, reading and surfing the net.  Surprisingly, I've not had the TV on. I thought I would binge watch a series or two but nothing has really taken my fancy. 

So, as it stands now, I am no further forward and I can't help but feel disappointed both by the care (I completely understand the difficulties the staff face re working conditions, lack of staffing etc and I don't think this is necessarily down to anyone person, more a breakdown in the process) and the results. Whilst its great that there nothing was found, disappointingly it also means I am no closer to resolving the pain.  

9 comments

  1. Ugh! I would have been so annoyed. It doesn't sound like you had the greatest experience and were really let down with the lack of information you were given.
    Sending hugs. I hope you feel better soon x

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  2. That sounds terrible - you should at least be told all the further care instructions you need. I have to say, I don't do hospitals well, there's always some drama. I think they forget that it's all new to you (because it's run of the mill to them). Get well, and take it easy!! And get on the phone with any questions!! #TwinklyTuesday

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  3. I'm lucky to never had one. I'm glad you got through it and it is done for you X #twinklytuesday

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  4. Really feel for you and hope you can find out what is wrong soon. I also hope writing it all out in detail has helped as I often find it does. Also I always admire anyone who tells it like it is. Wishing you all the very best moving forwards #TwinklyTuesday

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  5. I'm sorry you had such a rubbish experience. We're smack between the QE and NNUH and I have to say whenever we have to go the QE I dread it, I've never had anywhere near as good an experience with them as I have in Norwich. If you need anything just shout my lovely xx

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  6. Oh my! So sorry you had to go through all that, it could have been made so much better for you by the hospital! Glad that nothing serious was found #TwinklyTuesday

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  7. I work in a hospital and know first hand that the quality of care in all aspects can be very unpredictable. Its a shame #twinklytuesday

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  8. So sorry you didn't have the best experience with this. I hope you are on the road to recovery and feel better soon! #twinklytuesday

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