For women with Endometriosis, a laparoscopy is the normal way to get diagnosed and also treated. I've now just had my second! The first was when I was about 17 and it was to see whether I had endometriosis for definite. They found it within the pelvic wall, however my only form of treatment at this point was the Mirena Coil which releases progesterone in order to suppress the growth of the endometriosis. About 6 years on, another coil later and with constant pain and bleeding I've had another laparoscopy in which they have found endometriosis in the POD (pouch of douglas). They have used diathermy (a heat laser treatment) to remove what they have found! Hopefully this will help me for now, however I thought I would write a few helpful things that I've found out throughout the two operations that may help others!
Things to do in preparation:
- Make sure that you have got rid of all bacteria from your home by the night before or the morning of the operation ensuring all sides are bleached, and especially the toilet! Risk of infection on your return home is reduced significantly by doing this!
- Change your bed sheets before you go in for your op for the exact reason as above - bacteria!
- Stock up on; wet wipes (because you won't be able to shower straight away), peppermint tea (because you will get bad gas right up to your shoulder), and soup (because you won't want to eat a lot and your throat will feel sore and dry)!
- Buy loads of magazines and make sure you have a decent amount of TV or films taped or ready to go; you will be bored sitting around healing to start with!
- Get baggy clothing/nighties so not to wear anything tight over your wounds to start with - trust me on this one!
- Have a pillow ready for the car journey home to place under the seatbelt, this will help with any bumps on the road!
Things to pack in your hospital bag:
- A book and/or magazine as there may be a long wait while you see your surgeon, anaesthetist and nurses before your op!
- A hair brush, deodorant and face wipes for when you have had your op and are ready to freshen up before going home; this will make you feel much more awake!
- Sanitary towels for when you are getting dressed before going home; you will probably need a nice thick one!
- Fresh pants (in case of leakage) and a nighty if you fancy something looser than what you wore into the hospital.
- Dressing gown and slippers - those hospital gowns really do flap open at the back, even when you tie them right!
When you arrive home:
- Rest! As tedious as it seems, your body just needs to heal so sit back and read, watch TV or a film!
- Get someone to help you up and down at first as stiches can feel like they are pulling and you will struggle when you need to tense your abs!
- Eat little and often. You may not be regular with bowel movements right away so eat little and often with some fibre in the diet. If that doesn't work have a Senna tablet at night!
- Keep your fluids up, similar to above, your bladder may be a little sore and you may struggle on the toilet at first. The more you drink the easier it becomes!
- Try not to slouch your shoulders - its so easy to slouch as if your straighten up it pulls on the wounds, but you will get back ache so try to keep moving in a gentle way!
Don't get upset or disheartened about the process or the treatment you have received. It's scary having to have the op as you know you are having it for a reason, and for some the outcome can be daunting. Talk it through with a close one, write down your fears pre and post operation and have a positive outlook. Whatever the consequence you CAN get through it, and you WILL.
If you want any support and feel I may be able to help, send me a message. If I don't feel I have the write answer I will point you towards someone that might.
If you want to read about Endometriosis and Exercise check out my post here.