I finally got back to the doctor today and my drains were both removed. Yippee! My appointment today was the rescheduled appointment I was supposed to have Wednesday. I think I'm kind of glad it got pushed out so I didn't go in on Wednesday just for him to tell me he was going to remove one and leave one for a few more days. He had to tell one of his patients that today, but she had surgery three days after me. My extended wait due to the storm was worth it after all.
Removing the drains was a weird sensation. I'll admit I was nervous for it to be painful, but then the nurse told me she puts a topical anesthesia at the drain site to help. I watched him snip the stitches and then pull...oh my.
My breath caught and he said, "Breath deep!" I did and then it was out. The second one came out much smoother. I knew there was a lot of tubing in me, but I was still a little surprised at how long it was. Amazing.
The doctor said everything looks really good and I have to agree it's really starting to look much nicer. He told me...
- I'm still on limited activity.
- I need to keep sleeping in a v-position (in recliner with pillows under my knees).
- Little-to-no bending or reaching above my shoulders.
- Standing is better than sitting, but I can sit up, ie. at the computer or for meals, for short periods of time.
- I can start taking small walks, beginning with 15 minutes and working up to 30.
- Switch antibiotic ointment for cocoa butter now. I'll do scar cream when the incisions are true scar tissue.
He also reminded me that I am doing better, but I still have a long way to go. Now that my drains are removed I have to be careful because too much movement can cause swelling under the skin that will not be drained out. He said it will naturally reabsorb, unless it's too much, then I'd have to go back in and allow him to drain it. I'm going to be do my best to not have to go back to drain fluid out of my abdomen.
This means I have to continue to take it easy. I had read that when they say it takes 4-6 weeks for recovery they really do mean 4-6 weeks. Today was one of those days I had to remind myself a good, obedient recovery is going to be worth it in the end. :) Being able to pull down my shirt over my smooth abdomen without drains poking out was a good taste of how nice it will be....if I'll just be patient.