Iâ€™m pretty sceptic about the quality of care at local hospitals in our area (Mukdahan), seen it first
hand. In case of an emergency they put you on an IV and then three things can happen. You die;
problem solved, you suddenly get beter; problem solved. But if you donâ€™t die and you are not getting
any better; they will send you to another hospital where three things can happenâ€¦
A little over three weeks ago I developed a fairly big lump on my groin and because it appeared
overnight, I visited the hospital (Mukdahan International Hospital).
It was diagnosed as an inguinal hernia and because of of the possibility of strangulation of the
intestines I needed surgery fast. Back on Thursday for an appointment with the surgeon, blood-work,
x-rays of chest & spine and a very optimistic and funny surgeon who couldnâ€™t wait to get it done.
With my back against the wall I was admitted two weeks ago but boy was I scared.
All my funny remarks about local hospitals worked against me and although I have been under the
knife a couple of times before, I couldnâ€™t relax and my mind was racing to find a reason to call it all
off. There wasnâ€™tâ€¦ Got irritated when an IV was administered and then was asked to sit in a wheelchair
in order to be wheeled to the X-ray department. Could have done this the other way around;
me walking to the X-ray department and THEN the IV; talking to deaf mans ears came to mind,
Wheeled to the room; a nice one (the most expensive one) because great for the wife to show off and
I thought â€˜this is probably the last room Iâ€™m ever going to see so it better be a luxury oneâ€™.
Within no time I was picked up and brought to the theatre and a spinal was admitted by the surgeon himself .
Images of being paralysed for the rest of my life entered my brain, the legs got numb and one thing
was sure now; couldnâ€™t run away from it anymore.
Arms were strapped like Jezus on the cross, one for IV and one for blood pressure.
Got really, really dizzy and told one of the male nurses about it. Got the classic reply â€˜Alai Na?â€™.
The surgeon picked that up and asked me in Tinglish if I wanted to have my wife besides me.
This is Thailand and within a minute of so my wifeâ€™s face appeared next to my pillow.
Felt the cut, no real pain but you know someone is somehow cutting into your tummy and immediately
smelled the aroma of burned flesh. Wife asked me what that smell was and when
I told her they were coagulating the cut she almost passed out. When she got her act together she
started to be interested in the procedure and was looking â€˜over the curtainâ€™. She even filmed it
with her iPhone. Thoughts of preparing a Koi dish probably entered her mindâ€¦
Then I realised I could wiggle my toesâ€¦
A little later I realised I could â€˜feelâ€™ my feetâ€¦
25 minutes down the line and itâ€™s almost done, layers need stitching up and I start to feel that.
Four layers are to be stitched up and the pain is increasing with the minute. I bite my teeth,
iâ€™m not going to complain because that will only complicate matters. The upper skin is stitched
and the pain is almost too much. Almost done, almost done says my wife.
And then itâ€™s over and Iâ€™m wheeled back to my room and need to lay flat for 8 hoursâ€¦
Itâ€™s three in the afternoon and until eleven Iâ€™m not allowed to sitâ€¦ ok, go with the flow.
Normally the lower half of the body is supposed to be numb for 4 to 5 hours but within an hour
I can lift both legs. The wound is very painful but a shot of morphine does wondersâ€¦
At six my wife feeds me some slices of pizza and the nurses think that this is very funny, a falang
on his back being fed pizza by his wife.
Finally 11 oâ€™clock and Iâ€™m out of bed seconds later, dizzy and wobbly legs but Iâ€™m up, need to
get the circulation going.
The next day Iâ€™m up and walking slowly thru the corridors of the hospital; Iâ€™m supposed to stay
here for 5 days but Iâ€™m gonna show them that Iâ€™m fine and ready to go home. In reality, Iâ€™m not ready,
it hurts like hell and every step is torture but I have a profound dislike for hospitals and thereâ€™s no better
bed than my own, at home.
Doctor visit at eleven and he is willing to let me go home the next day if the wound looks ok and the dressing is changed.
Day three the the wound looks fine to the doc; dressing changed, where are my clothes? Gotta go home!
Day four, five, six and seven I have great difficulty walking the stairs, getting in and out of bed and every thing I do makes
me awful tired. Spend a serious amount of time in bed watching movies, movies & movies.
The next week Iâ€™m relearning to sit, the area of the incision is very tender and the mesh is getting in the way, I feel it
sitting somewhere near my groin. And, the skin is very tender as well, a whole area is kind of numb but also feels like it
has been badly burned. Stitches removed on day eight and the surgeon seems happy.
Iâ€™m in the third week now and itâ€™s getting better by the day, energy levels are better, skin is still sensitive but feels also a little better.
Getting there but slowly.
Some small neurological side effects from the spinal; a numb (but sometimes tingling) area on top of my left foot and occasionally
my left little finger and side of my left hand appears to be â€˜sleepingâ€™. Weâ€™ll see if that improves over time.
All in all Iâ€™m very happy with the outcome and impressed by the job the surgeon did, itâ€™s not all bad what happens here in Isaan