Laparoscopy Survival Guide

When the consultant suggested a Laparoscopy, he gave me a leaflet explaining what it was and that the recovery time was 1-2 days. And when the procedure was booked, I received another paper that told me not to eat six hours before the surgery and not to wear jewellery or make-up. 

But I feel like there was a lot I wasn’t told, and should have been. So I’ve compiled a Laparoscopy Survival Guide.

1. If your appointment is in the afternoon, don’t bother having your partner, friend, family member take a whole day off work. My appointment was at 1pm, and Husband was sent away not even allowed to wait with me in the ward before or after the procedure. They called him at 5.30pm to pick me up. I would have rather had Husband take off another day to take care of me and the kids.

2. Bring magazines cause it is boring waiting around by yourself. Books are good too, but you may not be able to focus on a book if you’re nervous beforehand or in pain afterwards.

3. Wear comfy clothes. Yoga pants or other trousers with relaxed waistband. Wear ballet flats or similar comfy shoes that can be put on and off easily as you’ll have to walk to the operating room in your hospital gown and shoes (they don’t wheel you into the operating room like they do in the States).

4. It often takes more than 24 hours to recover from a Laparoscopy. The nurse told me before the procedure that I would need help for a few days as it would take 1-2 weeks to fully recover. Shouldn’t I have been told this before? I have two kids, I can’t just let them fend for themselves. I heard a lady in a nearby bed asking if she could do the school run the next day–she was told no. This lady should have been told that she would need help. The nurses knew this, why couldn’t this information be placed on the leaflets we were all given?

It’s now almost 48 hours since the procedure and I am only starting to feel better. I still have abdominal pain and some trapped gas/pressure in my shoulder. Luckily my in-laws are here helping with the kids, but they have to leave tonight as we had all assumed I would be completely better by now. Hopefully I will be completely better by the morning.