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having a meltdown over surgery.


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Don't know if it will help reassure you, but I had laparoscopic gallbladder surgery 4 or 5 years ago, and though I was nervous, I went through it fine and recovered quickly. Surgery is freaky, but once you get through it you'll be glad you did it, I'm sure, since gall bladder pain is so awful. Maybe try to distract yourself? Promise something nice to yourself when the surgery's over so you have something to look forward to? 

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Its not the actual surgery that scares me really, its the anesthesia.

 

If you have any concerns with the anesthesia, maybe you could call them to discuss your fears.  Every time I have surgery, the anesthesia people call a couple days before and also require an appt to meet with them to discuss any concerns I might have (and go over meds etc with me).

 

Do you have a phone number to call the anesthesia people?

 

Or maybe ask you pdoc if you could temporarily have a higher dose of the ativan, right before surgery, to help with the worry/stress.  They ALWAYS tell me to make sure and take the klonopin and xanax in the morning of the surgery.

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Along the lines of what Melissa said, would it be helpful for you to know more about the surgery and anesthesia?  I think its better for you when you have solid information as opposed to the scary things we can come up with in our heads.  Give your doctor a call and let them know that your nervous about the surgery and would like to talk more with them about it.

 

I know it may sound cliched, but deep breathing really helps too.  Take big, cleansing breaths and picture the anxiety being swept away with your breath.

 

I everything goes well and your panic attacks go back into hiding.

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My panic attacks won, I called the Doctors office today and told them I would not be doing the surgery. There was no set date yet, just sometime next month, so I told them to just take me off the list.

I had a panic attavk so bad tonight i had to take 4 .5mg ativan just to calm down enough to breathe.

They only found 1 stone in my gallbladder, and I havent had an attack since Monday, which means it may have finally stopped blocking the duct and returned to just chilling in the gallbladder.

If that is the case I'm just going to stick to my new very low fat diet to prevent new ones from forming and hope for the best.

I feel like a failure again, for letting my panic win, and someone whose opinion means a lot to me implied that he thinks im being a baby... And maybe I am, but I cannot survive another month of this kind of panic. Last time it was this bad I had to be hospitalized bc I became a severe danger to myself... I cant live that again.

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This may sound pretty demented but I look forward to going to the Hospital.   Everyone takes care of me, I can lay around and fiddle around on the computer and eat that great Hospital Jello.    uhh.  Everything but the last part.

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I also look forward to surgery ... and the reason may sound fucked up, but it is so true for me ... every time I have surgery under general anesthesia, the voices get less and less.  Over the course of 6 years I've had about maybe 8-10 major surgeries.  And every time, when I wake up from being under the anesthesia, I hear no voices.  They will eventually come back, but the more anesthesia I am under and more often, the harder it is for them to surface. 

 

This is how my hallucinations started getting better/hearing and seeing less of what was not real.  I don't know why this happened, but for me I will go under general anesthesia any time because it reduces the voices more and more every time.

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I think you should let some time pass, let your anxiety simmer back down and then find a med(s) you can take and some coping skills that you can use.  Once you feel under control again, reschedule the surgery and use your med and coping skills to deal with the anxiety that arises before the surgery.  Do you have a therapist?  I think its very important for you to work on this with some professional help.

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Im trying to get in with my therapist but she is pretty backed up.

We stopped doing regular meetings a few months ago bc I was doing so well, and now its kinda hard to just schedule an impromptu session.

I still see my pdoc monthly, but she isn't so good with the therapy stuff... Great at giving good meds, but that is about it.

Im a lot calmer since I cancelled the surgery, but I dont know how long it is going to be until my gallbladder decides to attack again, and what happens if it does?

I honestly wish there was a way to have the surgery during an attack, because honestly the pain is so bad at those times that I truly dont care about what could happen during surgery.

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I agree, let some time pass. The attacks sound awful. 

Talk it over with your tdoc. Anaesthesia is the easy part of the surgery. Get in and talk to an anaesthesiologist. They know their stuff, they're highly trained individuals in one thing, keeping you stable during surgery. I know surgery is super anxiety inducing. The anaesthesiologist can arrange for you to have some sedation the day of the surgery, too. 

 

Everyone loves the anaesthesiologist. :) They're the "Dr Feel Goods". Afterwards they'll give you appropriate pain medication (whether you need it or not, I learned after a minor surgery!) and discharge you.

 

It is a simpler surgery, if that makes you feel better. Done through a small incision with cameras. It is still scary, and I don't want to downplay your fear. My first surgery under general was my wisdom teeth and I was TERRIFIED. They injected something into my IV, I was completely calm, and then the anaesthesia, and I woke up in no pain and wondering what the fuss was about. That's how it's been every time I've gone under, except, with less fear each time. You'll feel better after.

 

But definitely tell the surgery team about your fears. They've heard it all, and worse, before. They'll definitely accommodate for you.

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I had emergency surgery a few months back to remove my gallbladder. I had a few attacks, and then I ended up in the ER after one and they kept me because I had pancreatitis. I was there a few days before the procedure and they kept me the day after as well. It was nice because the entire time I was in the hospital, they took good care of me and kept me going on pain meds. the only bad part was that I wasn't allowed to eat or drink anything for days. I had an IV, but still, noting by mouth for most of the time I was there sucked.

I can understand your fear. I had a couple of gallbladder attacks like 5 years ago, and when my doc mentioned surgery at the time, I said no thank you! I was just to terrified to even think of it. Since then, I had another much more necessary surgery, and even though it was scary, I knew it was the right thing to do. I was so sick that the fear couldn't take over. It was the same way for my gallbladder surgery, the pain was so bad that I didn't care anymore, and was ready for the surgery.

Get in and see your therapist when you can so that hopefully you will be ready when you need the surgery.

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