Monday, September 21, 2015
I'm back home, hurting a lot and feeling like death warmed up.
It was a difficult procedure to endure. According to post-op information, the upper 'cap' of the kidney stone I encountered a couple of months ago had survived the lithotripsy intact, despite everything beneath it being turned to powder. It sort of 'hid' itself in the inner bits of the kidney until I ripped it loose ten days ago, while moving furniture. That meant the body tried to pass it in the normal manner, but instead it settled cap-like on top of the ureter and blocked it almost entirely. In so many words, it shut down that kidney, leaving the other to carry the load for the whole of the body.
The urologist infiltrated his way up the ureter to the source of the problem, then used a laser to 'pulverize' the remains of the kidney stone. He inserted a stent to ensure that the resulting mess could drain. What's coming out is more blood than anything else right now - the sharp edges of the stone cut up the interior of the kidney pretty badly - but he assures me that will change over the course of the next week or so. I'm on four more pills (!) to add to those I already take following my heart surgery and damaged spinal cord. Hopefully they'll prevent any more infection.
The worst thing I've found is an almost complete lack of control over urination. When it wants to leak, it's going to leak, and there's not a darn thing I can do to stop it! I've taken to wearing adult diapers to keep things as sanitary as possible. After a week or so, when the stent is out and the kidney and bladder have had time to recover, things should get back to normal.
I'm going into so much detail purely as a warning to you, dear readers. Take your kidneys seriously, and every other aspect of your body's waste disposal system! Problems there can lay you low in a heartbeat, and there won't be much you can do unless and until they're resolved. Thank heavens for First World medicine! I've seen people in the Third World afflicted with kidney stones. Many survived . . . but many didn't, and died in excruciating agony from the stone and its associated complications. I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy.
I probably won't blog too much tonight or tomorrow morning. By tomorrow afternoon, I hope things will get back to normal. Thanks for your good wishes and prayers.