If you are squeamish or a prude, don’t read. I’m writing about anatomy, problems and feelings at the moment. I know this is fuel to some of the nosy ones out there – but don’t complain to me if you’re shocked or can’t look at me in the eyes when we next see each other! You have been warned.
Ok, it’s been a while since I posted about the medical side of things. I guess that’s because it’s been a busy few months. I’ve been to hospital five … six … possibly even seven times in the last 10 weeks – and that’s on top of normal appointments.
Well, it’s 9 days since I had my operation. Mr Kehoe at the JR/Churchill Hospital is amazing. I can’t thank him enough, you see, I FINALLY got referred to the dermatology clinic at the hospital and saw Dr Cooper. It was only a year after I was originally meant to go … anyway. Dr Cooper could clearly see something was wrong (other than the cancer) and referred me to Mr Kehoe.
I had a thirty minute appointment with him and the start of October(and a medical student) and I described all the problems I’ve had since I started having sex (over a decade ago!). He performed something called the Q-tip test and diagnosed me with vulval vestibulitis. OMG, was I relieved! You see, I had been suffering for years. All my symptoms are listed in other posts – but basically, I’ve never had pain free sex. There’s always been a caveat: great sex followed by intense pain, painful sex, dry, tears and tears .. basically, just plain horrible.
Mr Kehoe booked me in for surgery there and then. 20th October. A Saturday. He’s leaving the Oxford area and wanted to fit me in before he leaves.
Arrived nice and early with an empty tummy and a dry mouth. Met with Mr Kehoe and the other docs. He explained that vulval vestibulitis (VVS) is basically hypersensitive nerve endings, and to ‘cure’ the problem – they cut the nerve endings away.
Because I have LS – they had to modify the surgery and cut away more skin, but he explained everything slowly and with care. The perfect doctor in my opinion.
The usual followed. General anaesthetic, sleepy bye-byes, slow wake up, freezing cold and lots of blankets, low blood pressure, back to the ward and LOTS OF PAIN!
Jeez … the pain was bad. I had some nice morphine though – so all good.
Overall, I had 28 stitches, and 6 of those were “deep” ones (Mr Kehoe’s words).
Now, the nurses wanted me to sleep for a couple of hours – but I really couldn’t. How do you sleep when you’re in pain? It’s impossible! So instead I called John and got him to come and see me, and then went for a wee (argghhhh eurrrghhhh pain … nuff said) and changed into my jim-jams.
After several hours I was discharged with a bag of medicine.
Several more hours later – just gone midnight in fact – I was back at the Horton hospital. The discharge nurses had forgotten to give me a particularly strong painkiller that Mr Kehoe had prescribed and so I needed to see the out-of-hours doctor. For once, things went smoothly and I was given a nice big pack of tramadol. Hurrah. I could finally sleep!
Over the next few days I kept myself drugged up and comfortable. I overdid it though (typical me) and walked far too much causing a load of unnecessary pain.
I thought I was over the worst – but it’s got really bad again. Yes, I know, I’m being wimpy, but seriously – it’s like I’m peeing glass. It stings like a bitch and the stitches are SO SORE! Still having to use ice packs.
Earliest doctor’s appointment I could get? A week today. Booked though – just in case!
So … overall …
I’m really pleased that I had the surgery. I’m so anxious and excited to see what it does. I know the recovery time is several months and there’s a load more hoops to jump through before John can take my new vagina for a test drive (I’m really sorry for that mental image!), however … it’s soon to be a possibility!! If it all goes well then we can finally start to think about children … scary!
Also – after all these stitches and all this pain – I think I can safely say I can handle pain from childbirth.
I’ll post again soon …
and I’ll cover seeing friends, movies, writing, reading, Kristell Ink, pets, and a host of other (more interesting) things.