WHITNEY CAIN, PHD

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Surgical Traditions

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My husband has instituted a new tradition.  I’ve dubbed it the “Annual Elective Biggish Surgery.”  We’re at three years and counting, hence “annual.”  “Elective” recognizes these surgeries aren’t life-saving or dire, but without them life might seem less worth saving and pretty dire.  Although there are certainly more serious surgeries out there, he’s not getting his ears pierced – ergo “biggish.”

This new tradition has tested my nursing skills.  I can’t stand seeing that hulk of a mustached man hurting, so I’m the bomb at timely interval pain med administration. I can operate the ice machine like a boss, too.  I need more training in other areas.

Rich’s inaugural event involved having his foot rebuilt.  It was never properly set after he broke it as an undergrad chasing a runaway VW.  Thus, he moved about life with a workable, albeit oddly shaped, stepper.  Fast forward some decades and the foot required a major fix. 

After surgery, he was on one of those rolling things for two months.  When he developed a blood blister on his knee from all that rolling about, I graciously offered to handle it.  Thank goodness for Urgent Care and antibiotics.  Turns out licking a needle and wiping it on your shorts doesn’t count much for sterilizing operating implements. 

Rich’s second annual surgery involved his bicep and rotator cuff.  The intravenous device he came home with didn’t release any pain medicine, so I called the anesthesiologist for guidance.  That joker instructed me to massage the needle insertion site.  I reminded him we’re married.  There is no massaging in my house.  I gave Rich an extra pain pill. 

This year’s event is coming up.  Rich is having his maiden voyage touched up.  This surgery supposedly won’t be as extensive and, thankfully, won’t require the rolly thing. 

I’ve dusted off the ice machine and invested in some Hydrogen Peroxide in case I need to operate.  There’s no need to practice my interval night waking for med administration since I’m at the age where that occurs naturally.  I think I’m ready, but send pointers if you like.  I’m still in training, after all.

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Photo Credit:  Jinekoloii ve Gebelik. (2007).  Retrieved from http://www.jinekolojivegebelik.com/2007/09/laparoskopi.html

Whitney Cain