What I Do to Prepare for Endometriosis Surgery
I was diagnosed with endometriosis via an exploratory laparoscopy surgery in 2011. I then received a six-hour excision surgery in 2013 and recently started volunteering as a support group leader for Endometriosis UK. I am awaiting my third surgery, and remain hopeful that this will improve my symptoms. I am equally excited as I am nervous!
Hopefully this will be my last surgery in a while (third time’s the charm!) but having been through this twice already, I have devised some useful lists which I thought I would share.
- Research –Be sure to ask your doctor about any concerns.
- Make lists – Yes, I have added making lists to this list, but remaining organized can keep you from unnecessary stress.
- Make practical arrangements – This includes informing your workplace, ensuring child/pet care, making sure someone can look after you during recovery, etc.
- Socialize (if possible) — Many of my friends may not be able to come visit me during recovery so I am hoping to catch up with them before surgery, so I don’t succumb to cabin fever afterwards.
- Prepare your skin – I often end up with skin infections around the wound. This time I have made sure to stop fake tanning well in advance (the thought of product buildup near a surgical wound has put me off!) and I am showering in antibacterial soap.
- Be healthy – Try to maintain as much of a healthy lifestyle as possible to aid recovery and reduce negative side effects of anesthetic.
- Arrange post-op meals – plenty of soft foods and prepped meals that can be quickly heated up.
- Arrange post-op comforts – Stools softeners, painkillers, clean bedding, comfy PJs, big pants and possibly a bedside sick bowl.
- Relax — This is easier said than done, but stress will not help your body in the long run. In the week running up to surgery I plan to do lots of yoga and book a facial.
Essentials to Bring:
- Dressing gown
- Phone and charger
- Reading material — you may be waiting around
- Any medications
- An outfit change — Things may get bloody.
- Moisturizer — I use a tinted BB cream so I feel like I have some makeup on.
- Lip balm
- Body spray — This can be useful to cover up any embarrassing odors, but be considerate to your hospital roomies!
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Dry shampoo
- Wet wipes — Bring ones that are safe to use on any body part, so there’s no need to bring separate face wipes.
- Sanitary towels
- And don’t forget to keep a cushion in the car, to go between your belly and seat belt for the ride home!
- DVDs/Netflix subscription — Don’t do what I did and watch the entire “Orange is the New Black” series before surgery.
- Antibacterial soap, to be used in place of regular shower gel
- Herbal teas that help with digestion, relaxation and pain
- Soft food
- Stool softeners
- A stool for the toilet — Raising the feet a little can take off added pressure. I just use an old shoe box.
- A designated driver willing to run errands and take you to your doctor
I hope that helps! Please share your surgery tips!
Editor’s note: Any medical information included is based on a personal experience. For questions or concerns regarding health, please consult a doctor or medical professional.
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