Tuesday, April 22, 2008

This May Sting a Little When You Urinate

With those parting words, my urologist, cum surgeon, walked out of the pre-op waiting room at Suburban Hospital. He also told me no heavy lifting (fat chance) or working out for the next two weeks. "I want you to be a couch potato." He also gave me a prescription for Pyridium, which will turn my pee bright orange.

So today was the biopsy. I salute Doris and the other pre-op nurse who were really kind and very conscientious. The could say the phrase, "prostate lesion," without giggling, and were very sympathetic. Each had a twinkle in her eye. Doris was a little pained to see my pierced nipple and navel (we had to tape them down - note to self, shave the hair next time). She asked me if they hurt. I said I guess so, but that happened fifteen years ago.

They got me an extra-long hospital gown. As the pre-op nurse said, "You don't want to look mini." I thought that was quite considerate, considering the circumstances. After doffing my clothes and donning my gown, she got me comfortable in the bed and started an IV drip. At this point, Ron left the room hurriedly. Doris looked at me and said, "Needles." I nodded, figuring that she didn't need to revive him if he fainted.

This initial drama lasted about 45 minutes, at the end of which, I took my drip and pole and trundled off to the bathroom. You'd be surprised how complicated it is to hit the bowl while you are holding the tube that is dripping saline into your arm. I practiced a few square dance calls, too.

After Doris finished prepping me, my doctor came in for a chat, telling me about the stinging sensation after each urination for the next three weeks. He was going to perform a cystoscopy first, and then the biopsy, if it was necessary (it was).

As soon as the doc gave me his parting advice, the anesthesiologist came in, started a prophylactic antibiotic, then told me his drill - Versed, and two general anesthetics. He called in Shirley, the surgical nurse, who finished prepping me for the trip to the operating room. Each of the people involved, the two pre-op nurses, my doctor, the anesthesiologist, and the surgical nurse, all asked me my name and my date of birth. Some of them asked me where I lived. They all compared my patient number on my wrist with a plastic card, and my patient history. The surgical nurse actually asked me what my procedure was going to be. I thought about saying, "heart transplant," but then thought better of it.

The anesthesiologist started the Versed, and we were off to the operating room. I have to tell you, the operating room looked like an industrial cleaning closet (I used to be a janitor). I mean, I'm sure the place is clean, but it appeared cluttered with equipment, and stuff. I never saw the doctor again. I woke up in recovery. (I'm told that for the biopsy, he threaded a weed wacker up my penis, and just turned it on. My dick is about two inches shorter :-)

Christy was the recovery nurse. She was one busy person, and always smiling and energetic. She covered me with an extra blanket, which I really appreciated. I had three diet colas and some graham crackers. After resting for a half hour or so, Christy wanted me to take a pee. She said it might sting, and it did. She pulled the curtain, Ron came in, and I got dressed. I signed some releases, they plopped me in a wheel chair, and delivered me to the McKinley Street entrance to the hospital. I'd been there for about five hours.

The doctor had talked to Ron in the waiting room. The growth on my prostate appears to be benign, and I'll have results in about two weeks. Ron looked relieved to see me, and I was certainly happy to see him. We headed off to Silver Diner so that I could get some food in my stomach.

I had to go pee at the Silver Diner. I apologize to any who followed me, because although I did try to clean everything up, it did kind of look like an ax murder had taken place. I bled all over the front of my jeans, but that's what washing machines are for. I'm glad to be home, typing this.