Six Feet Tall

November 17, 2011

I’m heading over to Nottingham today to have the nasal prosthesis fitted under general anaesthetic tomorrow.

I just hope I don’t end up looking like this…

Apologies for the lack of communication. Life is far from easy at the moment but I’m determined to stay standing… roughly six feet tall!

 


Chapter 27

January 6, 2010

This being the start of a new year, my surgeon had a new senior registrar in tow at his out-patient clinic yesterday. Having outlined my extensive medical and surgical history, the consultant summed up by saying that a book could be written about my case. Four different surgeons have operated on my head at this stage and at least four more have been consulted, in an effort to solve the problem of chronic infection. Just recently, I found an old file at home which contained a detailed record of all the surgery I’ve had over the years. I was amazed to find that on my head alone, I’ve undergone a staggering 26 operations under general anaesthetic. I knew it was a lot but I’d lost count years ago as I’ve been through many day procedures and other operations as well. Yesterday’s consultation concluded with the surgeon suggesting, not for the first time, that I should write a book about my experiences. Right now, a new chapter has already begun.

My last trip to the operating theatre 2 weeks ago, was for a ‘drill-out’ of a small area of recurring bone infection in my head. The exposed bone was treated with an antibiotic medication and I was discharged home the following day. Once I’d recovered from the effects of the anaesthetic, my head felt good and I was confident that the treatment had been successful. However, a week later my symptoms gradually returned and my hopes were shattered once more. An uncharacteristic despondency descended over me as we entered the New Year.

On examination in the outpatient clinic yesterday, the surgeon confirmed that the infection has recurred in the bone. I was concerned that he would opt to refer me back to the specialist unit in the UK but to my relief, he decided to proceed there and then with some further work on my head. While the treatment was unpleasant (without anaesthetic), it certainly wasn’t unbearable and I have been asked to return in 2 week’s time for another session. If this treatment fails, then I will definitely have to return to Nottingham for further assessment. The story continues.


Raindrops Keep Falling

December 15, 2009

I went back to see the surgeon this morning following some minor surgery on my head two weeks ago. I wasn’t expecting much in the way of good news as I knew by my symptoms that the bone was still infected. Unfortunately, I was right. I have to return for more surgery on my head next Tuesday. I just hope the anaesthetist shows up!


Floating Away

November 30, 2009

There are few things in life which really bring out the ‘wow’ factor but floating along thousands of feet up in the sky in a hot air balloon, is one such experience. Hot air ballooning is extremely safe and provided that you are in reasonably good health, it is an activity suitable for all ages. It’s an experience of a lifetime that should not be missed.

I went on my first ever balloon flight last September and it was really magical. Peaceful yet exhilarating, it was like taking a magic carpet ride, floating silently over the countryside, as the people, livestock and the wildlife below went about their everyday lives. One of the great joys of ballooning is it’s tranquillity, as you float with the breeze, feeling absolutely no sensation of movement. The incredible feeling of time suspended as the world drifts quietly below, is one you’ll never forget.

We floated over rivers

river

forests

trees

farmland

fields

and landed safely to enjoy a champagne toast.

champagne toast

Cheers!

As I float away under general anaesthetic tomorrow, I shall pretend I’m on another magic carpet ride. Fingers crossed for a smooth landing please!


Your health is…

November 18, 2009

I should have known better. Last week, I bragged about how many anaesthetics I’ve had. Yesterday, I got told I need another one.

I was reviewed at the hospital as I’ve been in trouble with headaches again. My sense of smell and taste has also gradually changed. On endoscopic examination of my head, the surgeon identified a new area of inflamed bone (osteitis) just above the bridge of my nose. Osteitis can be a precursor of osteomyelitis so prompt action is required to prevent further deterioration of the bone. I’ve been booked in for day surgery under general anaesthetic.

I should be having my surgery next Tuesday but unfortunately that’s the day when a national strike is planned. The protest will see most health, education, civil service and local authority services withdrawn for 24 hours. Hospital appointments and non-emergency surgery will be cancelled that day and many patients will suffer the consequences. It seems that wealth has become more important than health.


Blips of the Heart

November 12, 2009

If I were to tell you the number of general anaesthetics I’ve had over the years, I’d be afraid you might pass out. In the last 5 years alone, I reckon I’ve had about 20 hours of surgery under general anaesthetic. People often ask me how I remain in such good form. This could have something to do with being full of gas! 🙄

I’ve come face to face with many anaesthetists and I can honestly say that I’ve never met one that I didn’t trust with my life.

Special thanks to the comedy duo the Amateur Transplants.