And the Surgeon Said…


I can now begin “easing in” to working out!

I am allowed to walk/run, swim and cycle. Weight lifting needs to wait a while longer, but for everything else, “let your pain be your guide.” I anticipated he would tell me to wait two more weeks, so this news was a wonderful surprise.

This was the first time I’d seen the surgeon since the umbilical hernia repair, so I asked him about his discoveries during the surgery. He told me how lucky I was. “You were extremely lucky. You were headed toward gangrene. While the intestines weren’t damaged there was vascular involvement. You were very, very lucky.” Gross.

And so, thankfully, I dodged a bullet. It turns out the hernia had been hanging around for a while and I didn’t know it. I did something, maybe lifting weights, to exacerbate the issue and cause the incarceration. I have a very high pain threshold which doesn’t always serve me well. I got in touch with my doctor as soon as I realized I had a problem. I just didn’t realize I had a problem until things had gotten a bit out of hand.

The surgeon and I also talked about the gallstone that showed up on the CAT scan I received to diagnose the hernia. Basically, it’s “significant in size with calcium deposits” but because I’m not feeling any pain, we can just leave my gall bladder alone…for now. I’m supposed to call my surgeon at the first sign of pain or discomfort I feel around my rib cage, particularly after eating. “If you feel any pain, don’t be a hero. Don’t tough it out. I’d rather do surgery when you’re mildly uncomfortable than when you are in the ER doubled over. ”

So of course now I’m doing online research to learn what foods and natural treatments strengthen the liver and gall bladder. If you have any recommendations, please let me know in the comments section.

As I ease in to working out, I’ll initially concentrate on cycling. Friend/training partner Lynn and I have a 20-mile ride on May 17. There’s no time like the present to prepare.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my surgeon’s comments regarding my being lucky. I know what he meant, but I choose to call it “blessed.” I sought medical attention in the nick of time, I received outstanding care every step of the way and recovery wasn’t that bad. I am very grateful.

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