Monday, October 14, 2013

Monday is Skin Graft Day--Whoopee!

I've put it off as long as I possibly can. I've sung, I've asked the universe to intervene, I asked my surgeon--a freaking excellent surgeon named Dr. Ronny Ford, chairman of dept of surgery at Huguley hospital--to put it off. No freaking dice. Time for a skin graft on my leg.
    I am not happy about this. I'll be admitted at about 8 AM on Monday, Oct. 21. At 9 I'll be given an epidural shot into my spine, freezing me from waist or sternum down for hours. They'll give me a happy pill to go with that so that I don't try to interfere with the operation--so I'll be blurry. Dr. Ford will take what is essentially a cheese slicer--you know those things that have a handle, a roller and a blade above the roller so that you put the roller on the cheese, press with the handle, and the slicer takes off a slice?--and take a slice of my right thigh. Then he'll put that through what is essentially a meat masher--a machine into which you feed meat that gets pressed out by a hundred little pieces of metal--and then he'll take that pizza pie piece of my leg and drop it on a special glue that he will have previously applied to my wound--now about six by seven or eight inches--and hope it stays in place and chooses to grow rather than commit suicide and turn black and rot.
    Both Dr. Ford and I know there are a few patches of infection remaining. He assures me that the graft will simply turn black and decompose on those but that they'll be small and will close on their own over the next month or so.
    I love this surgeon, okay? He's only the third or fourth I've dealt with--the first was the person who reimplanted my teeth after a bad fall that CL saved me from; the second was the guy who performed the first and third surgeries on me after my intestine exploded; the third was the guy who performed the second surgery on that intestinal nonsense, and now Ford. Unless you count the hernia operation, or the couple of times they've had to go into my face for broken bones after I lost fights--and damn, I lost almost every fight I was ever in. So Dr. Ford is my fourth/fifth/sixth surgeon and I love him.
    BUTTTTT......I'm still skeptical about taking a piece of meat from my thigh and putting it on my calf, okay? And I'm skeptical about another epidural: What if I don't recover? What if I'm freaking crippled because they missed when shooting up my spine? WHY am I allowing this to happen???
    Doc says the wound would close over the next several months. And yes, it's already been reduced by about one-third. But he says the risk of reinfection if I don't get the graft is really high since it will take several months to close and I will be back in the Amazon in two months. With the graft, he says I'll be in the hospital for five days, watching television and eating broccoli, and by the end of that time the pockets of infection will have shown themselves and will be treated and when I leave I'll be in ship-shape.
    Okay, so I go in on Friday to register. I go in on Monday, AM, for the operations--removing the skin and then putting the skin in place.
    I am not really happy. I love my surgeon, but I'm still nervous if you know what I mean.

1 comment:

lucas said...

Hope it all goes according to the plan. Good luck.