Thursday, January 15, 2015

Experiencing Hospital in Australia

At the beginning of last year, I was diagnosed with a cyst on my ovary. After checking and re-checking, visiting and re-visiting my specialist and the ultra sound specialist, we decided to remove it as it was getting bigger, almost doubling in size from when it was first discovered. 

To cut a long story short, yesterday I "checked-in" to the Women's and Children's Hospital for the surgery. Surgery is not a familiar word to me. In my 47 years this is the first time, so I was a bit nervous. 

Following the instructions that the hospital sent a few weeks ago, I had a light breakfast before 6:30am and had a bit to drink before 10am. I had to report in the Queen Victoria Operating Suite at 11am. We arrived early as it is always difficult to find a car park in this area. 

After filling in and signing all the forms and waiting for a while, a nurse came and asked David to go home and come back to pick me up around 5pm. What!! I should wait alone here, in this foreign place for my very first surgery? What if I don't understand what they say? What if.... what if..... what if.... but, David still had to leave me on my own. Sheesh!


I then went into the nurse's room, where we had a bit of interview....my name, date of birth, when was your last meal, any allergies, any infectious diseases. I was then informed about what I shouldn't do in the next 24 hours, what I shouldn't do in next 2 weeks and so on. Finally, she asked me to change to a hospital gown,  gave me a blanket and asked me to wait in the waiting room. As I had to put all my clothes and my belongings in a blue plastic bag, I didn't even have my novel to read while I waited, so I had to make do with all the magazines and the telly. 

It was a long wait, there were two other ladies scheduled before me. Finally at around 2pm, the nurse asked me to go into the other room. Here, she asked me to lay down and started the question me again, name, date of birth, last meal, any allergies and so on. My surgeon came and talked to me, she reviewed the procedure and the possible effects after surgery. She also reminded me again not to do any heavy activities in the next 2 weeks, such as gardening, swimming, heavy exercise, heavy lifting and decided to give me 2 weeks sick leave as I work in childcare. Oh..... I will miss my babies....

Then the anaesthesiologist came, we started with the same questions all over again...name, date of birth, last meal, any allergies...... He also asked me to open my mouth which I think was to check how big my mouth is. Then, came the fun part, looking for my vein to put the in the drip, he couldn't find one anywhere. (This always happens whenever I need to have a blood test). He then got a warm pack and put it on my hand for a few minutes, then asked me to open and close my hand 20 times and started patting the back on my hand, but still couldn't find one. Finally, after patting harder, he found one, but he had to use the smallest needle available. Ouch!!!


Finally, we went to the theatre, the room with the big light on the ceiling, which I have only seen in the movies. Here, the other nurse checked my name and date of birth again, put a compression bandage on my leg, then placed a mask on my face and asked me to take some deep breathes, one more deep breath and I was out........

When I woke up, I was in the recovery room. It was around 5pm. I changed back into own clothes and had a bit of drink. The nurse reminded me again what I should and shouldn't do. She said David was already waiting outside, but they couldn't release me until 6pm. At quarter to 6, the nurse called David to pay for the medication and get the car. At 6 o'clock sharp, they finally let me go. Then to top things off, we got an $87 parking ticket for parking at the wrong spot. Ah...crap!.....

Back at home, there was some beautiful flowers and a card from my loving husband waiting for me. Thanks Hon...






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