Tuesday, March 20, 2012

2nd visit with Dr. W. and the paracentesis

I sit in Dr. W.s office and we go over my lab values.I won't name them all but suffice it to say they were all surprisingly normal. My lymph's were the only thing that was low-not surprising at all. He told me that he would set me up for an ultrasound guided paracentesis and sent me down to have my pt/inr checked.

I went home and later Valerie called with the appointment and instructions for my paracentesis.


I had my parecentesis done at the local hospital. From a clinical view I found it rather interesting. They had me avoid all asa and ibuprofen products for several days prior and of course I was npo after midnight on the 28th.

I was taken to radiology and met with the doctor and his 2 nurses who assisted him.
An iv line was placed as a precaution because you do lose quite a bit of fluid rapidly with the procedure. Your vital signs are also monitored electronically through out.

After everything was carefully explained to me and papers signed, I was placed in a reclining position and the doctor did the ultrasound locating the best spot to place the catheter.
After that sterile drapes were applied and the area was cleaned and prepped.

He injected a small bubble of lidocaine and into that he inserted the long needle, guiding a flexible catheter into my abdomen. This was virtually painless-no worse than getting an iv line put in really. The catheter was then connected to a one liter vacuum bottle.I watched as the fluid drained. It looked clear going through the tubing but I noticed as the bottle filled it had a yellowish-green-bile color to it.

I was too scared to ask questions so I just closed my eyes and kept reminding myself how good it was going to feel to get rid of some of the ascites.
The 1st bottle filled rather quickly and I noted that the nurse labeled it for cytology/pathology for the lab.

The 2nd bottle didn't want to fill quite as quickly and I had to turn on my side a bit to coax some of the fluid down as it forms in pockets all around the internal organs of the peritoneum.The doctor also had to maneuver the catheter a bit and this was a little uncomfortable.

Finally it was over and they had drained almost 2 liters of fluid.
I already felt so much relief that it was incredible. I was then monitored for an additional hour and given a snack and something to drink.
Then I went home to wait to hear from Dr. W.

Once at home I went to the scales-lost 7 lbs incredibly. All from my abdomen!
I felt wonderful. I had a huge lunch and went to see my kids and grandkids.
I pushed the labwork I knew they were doing to the back of my mind and just enjoyed the rest of my day. In fact, I felt so good that I called V.who does the schedule where I worked and picked up a few shifts. Amazing how far denial can take you.

Love, Dixie

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