I have to be at the hospital at twelve thirty this morning. The spinal procedure will take place during the afternoon. I was allowed a light breakfast before seven thirty, no food after that, just sips of water up until eleven.
I am writing this to pass the time and not think about food. I always want what I have been forbidden. I am not afraid of the procedure, just a bit apprehensive about the outcome. I am not expecting miracles, I will be pleased if I can get back on the bus to go to the library, and the nearest shops. I hate being dependant on other people, everyone is so busy. My grocery shopping ‘on line’ is excellent except I always forget something important. I am pleased to say that ‘Morrisons’ is very efficient, delivering the goods into my kitchen. This is all good, but it would be nice to browse around and pick my own groceries. The downside is that I would spend a lot more money.
It is now eleven o’clock, I am waiting for my friend to take me to the hospital. Yes, I am getting a bit nervous, it is showing in my typing – I have made at least four errors in the last two lines. I had better stop and pick it up again when I come back, and I will describe everything truthfully.
I will now describe what happened at the hospital yesterday. My friend picked me up with her car at exactly the right time, no worries there. We soon found the Day Surgery and I was booked in, said ‘Cheerio’ to my friend and limped off with the nurse. I was taken to a ward where there were beds with chairs beside them. I chose to sit on the chair while they took my details and asked me a lot of questions about my medication and checking that I had not had food or drink since seven o’clock. All was well, because of the ‘starvation’. I thought that I was going to be completely anaesthetised, but no, I was going to have a large number of injections in my back. I was a bit relieved. I was also given an explanatory leaflet, which explained in big letters that the procedure did not work in all cases. I had been warned, but I had never expected miracles, I just hoped to be able to walk a bit better with less pain. I was divested of my trousers and my upper clothing and put in a hospital gown. I waited for my turn which came at three forty five. I had already noticed that the previous patients had been away from the ward for about fifteen minutes, so I expected to be back soon. I was wheeled into a small operating room where I was introduced by my consultant, Dr Guru, to his team, three kind nurses and two handsome young assistants, who were in charge of the screen, which showed Dr Guru where to give the injections. The first thing that happened, was the removal of the clothes from my upper body. I kept my pants and socks on. I then had to lie on my tummy on the trolley, head in my hands on a pillow, not too uncomfortable. I was sprayed twice with an extremely cold solution. I heard numbers being called. eg. L3. 5. 4. All I felt were very slight pricks, which the nurses at my head warned me about before they happened. It all seemed to take a long time. After three quarters of an hour, I heard Dr Guru say that they would move to the other side, which they finished in a quarter of an hour. I went straight back to the ward where I was given a drink and some welcome ginger biscuits.
Dr Guru came to see me to tell me that the procedure had not been completely successful, they had tried very hard to locate the nerve on the left side but failed, because the bone was in the way. All was well on the right side, there was a small chance that there might be some small improvement in my right leg, but none at all in the left leg. I thanked him for trying so hard for so long. He told me that he was passing my case on to a spinal surgeon.
My daughter collected me and I walked to the car just as I had in the morning. Today I feel exactly the same as I did yesterday, hoping that my right leg might get better in the next few days. Just a word to anyone who might have this procedure in the future, there is absolutely nothing to fear, no pain at all, just very little pricks.