Perhaps best known as the last words of executed murderer Gary Gilmore, they really have special meaning to me today. See, yesterday, I had my “physical” and my pre-op EKG. The physical wasn’t quite what I expected. I’m used to the whole “turn your head and cough” thing, but this was more checking if I had a pulse, had continued to lose some weight (down two more pounds… Woot!) and evolved into a question and answer session with Dr. McPhee.

Every time I interact with him, I feel that much more confident that I’m making the right decision. He’s very frank and open, describes what he’s going to do and why he does it that way, and what kind of success he’s had with the bariatric procedures. One of the things that was worrying me was the possibility of a leak. Dr. McPhee said that he’s not had a leak yet (knock wood) and that he takes “old school” steps to avoid them. Primarily, he doesn’t just staple the joins, he sutures them as well. He said it may make for a slightly longer procedure, but one with less risk of leaks.

We discussed possible complications, including scar tissue, leaks and blood clots. They are very proactive in that they give you a shot of heparin before the surgery and monitor things closely. They also hook you up with the squeezy things for your legs to make sure that blood is kept moving through the procedure.

There’s also the possibility that, if everything goes swimmingly, I could be released the next night. I’m not going to push it, but if I have the opportunity, I’ll do it. I did of course, tell the surgeon that all depended on the cable package. He said it’s just basic, so I should bring my iPad.

Once again, I can’t stress the amount of individualized care that the practice puts into each patient. I’m left with the distinct impression that if someone fails in the quest to become healthy, they take it personally. That’s actually been the case with the vast majority of the health care professionals I’ve met while dealing with the LGH system. The jackass ER doc being the exception, of course.

There’s a story there, as there always is… seems that when I visited the ER with the original infection, I had to deal with an extremely brusque ER attending physician. He took one look at my foot and pronounced, “Well, that’s coming off,” and walked away. Seriously. For that, he got a bigger insurance payout than the surgeon who did two operations on my toe. WTF?

At any rate, I’m going to get prepped for the liquid diet. The real reason behind it is that it shrinks the liver and gets it out of the way, giving the team more room to work. There will be two board-certified bariatric surgeons in the OR with me, which doubles my confidence level. I’m still scared, but I’m more sure that I’m making the right decision. And after I shed a Backstreet Boy, and am off my meds, well, then I’ll really be sure I did the right thing.

I’ll keep you posted.

Song of the Day: In Too Deep – Sum 41

  1. April Baker says:

    Love you and I’ll be thinking about you every minute of the day of your surgery. Tell SPW to expect a number of texts of prayers and pixie dust throughout the day!

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