Tuesday, August 14, 2012

What to Expect: Endometrial Laparoscopy

I’ve been a bit scarce around here as of lately so I thought I’d fill ya’ll in. For the most part, I try to keep things “light” around here… and¬†FOOD-centered. On occasion I’ve gotten serious & real with ya’ll. Today is one of those days. You’ve been warned! ūüėČ

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that the hubs and I want to be parents more than anything, but it hasn’t been something that has come easy to us. I don’t talk about our journey a lot, but the few times that I have, I’ve gotten such¬†incredible feedback from ya’ll… and an outpouring of encouragement, prayers (which I am so thankful for), and friendships formed through this strange common bond of infertility that SO many women struggle with. It blows my mind.

The further I get into this whole process (for lack of a better word), the more I realize it helps to hear other people’s stories and tips/pointers for the various stages/procedures along the way. No one really talks about it so it’s SUCH an unknown and scary thing. You¬†really don’t know what to expect unless you know someone who’s been there… ¬†or you google search the heck out of it. haha

We are nearing 2 very long years of trying to conceive (TTC), so here’s a little¬†background since I’ve really only gone into parts of it.

Our TTC Timeline (thus far):

  • October 2010 – Started TTC (around the same time my bro and sister in-law announced their pregnancy)
  • June 17, 2012 – My beautiful niece was born
  • July 4th 2011 – BFP – Finally pregnant after 9 long months of TTC
  • August 2011 – Devastating¬†Miscarriage¬†at 7 1/2 – 8 weeks
  • September 2011 through April 2012 – TTC again (on our own) under recommendation of our regular OBGYN
  • April 2012 – Started seeing a Fertility Specialist
  • April-May 2012 – Blood Tests & Semen analysis – Everything coming back completely NORMAL (plenty of eggs, confirmation of regular ovulation, and sperm count/motility normal)… Incredibly frustrating not knowing WHY we still couldn’t get pregnant!
  • June 5th 2012 – Ultrasound (Showing normal/healthy uterus)
  • June 10th 2012 –¬†Hysterosalpingogram (flushing of fallopian tubes with dye –¬†showing no blockages or cysts)
  • June & July 2012 – Continuing TTC hoping that the flushing of my tubes would be helpful.
  • August 10th, 2012 – Endometrial Laparoscopy/Hysteroscopy
And that brings you up to date I had my Laparoscopy/Hysteroscopy Friday and I am in recovery mode. Before I forget all the details, I wanted to outline the whole procedure for those of you that will be going through this same procedure. I know (for me at least) that talking with other women who had been through it helped me prepare for the surgery/recovery.

What surgery day looks like:

  • We arrived at the hospital at 5:45 am to check in (it was FUH.REEZING. Wish I had a sweater). No jewelry, make up, contacts, hair ties with metal¬†clasps on them¬†allowed!
  • Nurse called me back by myself (hubs had to wait in the lobby for about 30 minutes).
  • The nurse had me change into my hospital gown, socks with anti-slip grips on the bottom, and a lovely hair net (super hot):

(Please excuse the bags under my eyes Рlooking ROUGH sans makeup)

  • I went through all the pre-op questions with the nurse confirming any allergies, birthday, weight etc… and then I got my IV put in.
  • Then because I have this thing called Factor 5 Leiden¬†which means I have a higher propensity to develop blood clots, I had to have an injection of blood thinners before surgery (IN. MY. STOMACH… ugh that was the most painful thing – WAY worse than the IV). Just keeping it real.
  • Hubs was finally brought back to my pre-op room where we waited… and waited… and WAITED.

(The man is a TROOPER)

  • The Anesthesiologist, Nurse Anesthetist, and Operating Room¬†Nurse all stopped by to introduce themselves and see if I had any questions… we were just waiting on the doc to show up.
  • 8:00 am – Doc shows up and goes over the surgery with us and makes sure I don’t have any questions.
  • Nurse Anesthetist came back and injected me with some sort of relaxant and they started rolling me out of the room. I got the giggles and remember saying, “WOW! That stuff works FAST!” and things started getting really hazy. I remember them moving me onto the OR table and asking me to scoot down. And then I was O.U.T. – don’t remember a thing after that (so the next few steps were filled in later by the hubs).
  • Doctor started surgery &¬†halfway through had the OR Nurse call hubs’ phone to let him know how things were going.
  • Once the surgery was over, the doc came out to hubs to show him photos and fill him in on what he found.
  • Next, I remember waking up in the recovery room and seeing my doctor there. He said something to me which I really don’t remember. Then he came back a little while later and asked me if I remember what he told me… Nope. Not a thing. haha
  • They wheeled me back to my post-op room where hubs & my mom were waiting for me. Hubs informed me that I was not allowed to eat Mexican food for a few days. He said I looked like a little kid who was just told their puppy was dead and I kept saying, “But whyyy??? I don’t understand…” See I told you guys I love Mexican food. haha
 (No Mexican food???)
  • They immediately had me get up, use the bathroom, and walk around… I almost passed out so they had me lay back down, pumped me with another bag of fluids and wait for my blood pressure to rise.
  • Once I was able to walk around without getting dizzy they came and discharged me and sent me home.
  • SUCH. A. BLUR.

Pre-Op and Post-Op Tips:

  • Make up the couch before you go… Pillows, blanket, etc… you do NOT want to be dealing with that post surgery. I was SO glad I did this.
  • Wear baggy clothes to surgery & underwear that fall below your bellie button but above your pubic bone (you do NOT want them touching your stitches).
  • Bring a pillow for the car ride home. I had to drive an HOUR home after surgery and was so thankful to have a pillow… I was able to¬†PASS out.
  • Bring a bowl in case you are nauseas on the way home… I was fine but I’ve heard some people get really sick.
  • Take your pain meds! I was all tough and didn’t think I needed them the first day and then the drugs from the operating room wore off instantaneously at about 8:00 pm and I had a MISERABLE hour of waiting for the pain pills to kick in. We’re talking tears/meltdown/hyperventilation/hubs wanting to bring me to the ER… yah, not fun.
  • The SNOOGLE was my life-saver. I bought this for my short lived pregnancy last summer, but this “pregnancy” pillow has turned out¬†to be the perfect post surgery pillow. I propped it up against another pillow on the couch¬†and laid in it on my back with my neck resting on one end (the propped up side) and the backs of my knees resting on the other end… it cradled me like a baby and this was the only way I could sleep for 3¬†nights.
  • Sorry if it’s TMI, but stool softeners/fiber/probiotics are a necessity. Pain meds/Muscle Relaxers will STOP.YOU.UP.
  • Gas-X… and not for the kind of gas you are thinking of. They actually blow you up with gas to perform the surgery (see image bel0w). I was SHOCKED by the pain and discomfort of the pain in my shoulder and under my ribcage from the remaining gas in my body. It hurt WAY worse than my actually stomach/surgery area did.

(Image Source)

  • Stock fridge with Gatorade, Ginger Ale (in case you are nauseas), and¬†tea (my throat was super sore/dry from being intubated.
  • Have someone there for you… you’ll need it (physically and emotionally). Hubs literally had to lift me off the couch every time I needed to go to the bathroom, help me shower/dress, get food & drinks for me… etc¬†(That man is a SAINT).
So there you have it: What to expect if you have to undergo Endometrial Laparoscopy!
I’m currently 4 days post-op and doing really well. A little sore but nothing major. No¬†more pain pills, and I’m back at work. Having the weekend (PLUS Monday) was necessity and I’m glad I took the time I needed.
So, what did they find? I have had Stage 2 endometriosis (not too severe but little spots all over my uterus & multiple other organs) and a small cyst on one of  my ovaries. The doctor was able to remove EVERYTHING he found (Praise the Lord РHUGE answer to prayer)!

Lessons I’ve Learned & Other Thoughts:

My God is who He says He is.

  • He is GOOD: Psalm 136:1 “Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! His faithful love endures forever.”
  • He has a PLAN: Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,‚ÄĚ declares the Lord, ‚Äúplans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
  • He promises PEACE: Philippians 4:6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.¬†¬†And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

He is building character in Mike & I through this and we are¬†learning to find the JOY and HONOR in that…

  • This¬†post “From Mud to Miracles” says it all (Her whole series on Infertility is WONDERFUL).
  • James 1:2-4 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds,¬†because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
  • James 1:12 “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.”
  • Psalm 27:14, “Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.”

‚ÄúBiblically, waiting is not just something we have to do until we get what we want. Waiting is part of the process of becoming what God wants us to be.‚ÄĚ – John Ortborg

 

My husband is a Rock. Star.

  • I’ve said it before, but every day I mean it even more.¬†I truly can’t imagine anyone else by my side through all of this. Mike has known the things to say, the things NOT to say, when I’ve just needed a hug, when I’ve needed to laugh, and when to just let me cry. This whole journey has brought us even closer together… I can’t even explain it. I think that will equip us to be better parents than we may have been previously.

How important it is to have a Church home.

  • We have been so incredibly overwhelmed by the love, prayers, and support from our church family. God brought us to a new church back in February and it quickly became our church home. We’ve been so blessed by them.
Alright, I think I’ll step off my soap box now! ūüėȬ†I just really felt¬†called to¬†write about this and I sincerely¬†hope that this will be of help/encouragement to someone out there! If anyone has any¬†other questions about this¬†surgery/our journey, please feel free to shoot me an¬†email {kristina@mylifeasamrs.com} and I’ll try to get back to you as soon as possible!¬†Thanks for reading and for following our story, and most importantly for your prayers and friendships along the way! Ya’ll are THE. BEST.
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75 Responses to “What to Expect: Endometrial Laparoscopy”

  1. 1

    Heather — September 20, 2012 @ 12:38 am

    Wish you guys lots and lots of luck. I have PCOS and endo and we had a hard time ttc. We tried for 5yrs got pregnant 1 in 2007 lost baby at 10wks. Then tried clomid for awhile and had all the tests done that you did. And I do agree with some of the other ppl the gas pain was horrible and hurt so bad. But then we moved to femera, lost 25lbs and didnt get all crazy about it and I had so much more better luck with that felt when my ovulations hit and everything and on Christmas day felt the big O happen found out 5days post ovulation and on 9/11/09 gave birth too our little boy. We were done after that and this year while my dad was having a quad bypass surgery we were 15wks pregnant and had our other little boy on june 18, 2012 no drugs no nothing wasnt even trying. Good luck and I wish you tons and tons of sucess. Sometimes it happens when you just dont try and forget about it which I totally understand is harder said then done. Love your blog.

  2. 2

    Natalie — October 8, 2012 @ 10:18 pm

    I just found your blog through Pinterest and I swear it was meant to be. I’ve been married for over 3 yrs, TTC for one year and found out 4 days ago that I most likely have endo, half the eggs I should have (at 28) and am starting fertility drugs and most likely surgery…..I have been so negative and depressed since we found out. Reading this tonight was an amazing wake up call from God to remember that he is in control. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I’ll keep you in my prayers.

  3. 3

    Kari — October 12, 2012 @ 4:50 am

    Thanks for the experience. I have been dealing with pain for a while now. I have missed 2 days of work, now on lortab, and have an appt today to discuss and schedule the surgery. I am very scared (clearly since I’m up at 4 in the morning googling endo lap blog). I am scared to go under, I’m scared to find out if it is something worse, I am scared of the surgical pain. And I am apprehensive to exercise (stress relief) because my pain is at my right hip/pelvic region and radiates down the fron of my leg. It is painful to walk, which is why I’m not at work.
    But you shed some light on some of my fears. I hope I get ok news today at the doctor’s.
    Thanks for sharing your story.

  4. 4

    Shea — October 18, 2012 @ 4:05 pm

    I just had the same surgery last week and my OB/GYN found severe endometriosis and a cyst on my right ovary. TMI the endo was so bad that it had adhered to my bowel. He was able to clean everything up and drain the cyst on my ovary. I had originally gone to an OB/GYN where I live and they did an ultrasound and said it was normal. I had also had a CT scan done in Nashville and my Rheumatologist was concerned. So I got a second opinion from an OB/GYN in Nashville and he said there was something wrong and he wanted to do laprascopic surgery to find out what. I am glad I did get a second opinion. I am still healing but feeling better everyday. I go back in 6 months to get checked out again.

  5. 5

    Christy — October 20, 2012 @ 8:49 pm

    Just found out about your surgery. I had the same surgery done couple year’s ago, my hubby and were trying to have a baby too. Maybe we didn’t want it bad enough, so we’re still childless. anyways, I truly believe God will answer to your prayers, wish all the best things!:)

  6. 6

    Callie — April 16, 2013 @ 9:12 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story. God’s plan is truly perfect. My husband and I also went through several miscarriages before having our son Declan. I underwent a lot of the same testing you did. I have a different thrombophilia, but realized I needed to take a baby aspirin every day while we were trying to conceive, and then when we did get a positive test, I started taking Lovenox (blood thinner) and long story short…Declan came into our world. Every Dr. is different and every thrombophilia has different recommended treatment. I was seeing a hematologist throughout the whole process. I pray for you and your husband to maintain your incredible strength and patience as you wait on God. I know it’s hard and painful. I lived it, but if we didn’t have the 3 miscarriages, we wouldn’t have ended up with the son we know and love today. Hang in there!!!

  7. 7

    Betsy — April 19, 2013 @ 9:54 pm

    I wanted to let you know that this blog was very helpful to us! I had the same surgery yesterday morning and your blog was a helpful what-to-expect. We’ve been TTC for 3 years, so I understand what you’re going through.

  8. 8

    Betbet — July 2, 2013 @ 7:05 pm

    What an engaged audience you have! Great post. And BTW, you make a hairnet look good!

  9. 9

    Shanbanan — August 23, 2013 @ 4:59 pm

    I just found your story while searching on google for stories about TTC. My husband and I have been together for 4 years married for 2 yrs. We started trying right after we were married and now 2 yrs later nothing. We had every test done with all results coming back normal. My first OBGYN said that we should have no problem so she prescribed clomid and we did 3 IUI’s with no success. I became very discouraged and decided to stop trying for a bit. I ended up in the ER from an extremely painful period in June and my OBGYN said she would just monitor me. I was so upset so I decided for a second opinion and my new OBGYN suggested the lap! I couldn’t believe this seeing as we had tried for 2 yrs and my 1st OB said all was fine. Well we decided to get the Lap done. So now we are trying a round of Clomid without and IUI. If this doesn’t work we will be doing Clomid and IUI’s for 3 months. Sending you baby dust and hope you get your bundle of joy soon! Thank you for posting your story it has picked me up and given me hope once again!

  10. 10

    Heather — September 20, 2013 @ 5:47 pm

    Thank you so much for this blog. I am having a Laproscopy on Tuesday and it’s my first ever surgery. We have tried for over two years to get pregnant with no luck. I had the procedure similar to the Hysterosalpingogram called the FemVue and I was so blocked the dye could not go through and just filled my uterus. It was the worst pain, and all I had was 800mg of motrin. My fertility doctor will do the laproscopy to determine where the blockage is exactly and clear it out. He believes I’m around stage 1 or 2 of endometriosis because if it were in stages 3 or 4 it would have come up on the ultrasounds he did. This blog has put me at ease and I appreciate all of your suggestions for preparing for surgery. Thank you again! :)

  11. 11

    Mary — September 25, 2013 @ 4:35 pm

    Thank you so much for this post. I feel so encouraged. I just found out I have endometriosis today. After 1 year of IUI’s, clomid, etc. I started feeling discouraged. However, your blog lifted my spirits. God indeed has a plan for us all. Thanks for the reminder. God bless you, and thanks for sharing.

  12. 12

    Sherry — February 2, 2014 @ 12:17 pm

    I am thankful for this post. I have my surgery in a few days and I wasn’t sure what to expect. I love the way you explained everything and shared your faith. Thanks

  13. 13

    Michelle — March 3, 2014 @ 2:12 pm

    I just wanted to say thank you for posting your experience.. I was googling laproscopic surgery pain and came up with your blog. I just had surgery 2/27/2014 and am still in pain. I also found out i have Adenomyosis where the endo breaks into the wall of the uterus. Was told if anything grows back i will need a hyterectomy.
    I also have/had infertlity problems and 2 miscarriages. (I am 40 now so don’t really need my uterus). I really wish i found this blog before my surgery, it was very informative and would’ve put my mind more at ease..
    I hope everything is going well for you and I plan on reading your blog from the begining.

    • Tina replied: — March 3rd, 2014 @ 4:29 pm

      thanks so much Michelle! I’m happy to hear my post was helpful – it’s exactly why I wrote it‚Ķ It brings me joy to know that my experience can help others! :)

  14. 14

    Dr Kamal — July 5, 2014 @ 4:08 am

    I became very discouraged and decided to stop trying for a bit. I ended up in the ER from an extremely painful period in June and my OBGYN said she would just monitor me. I was so upset so I decided for a second opinion and my new OBGYN suggested the lap! I couldn’t believe this seeing as we had tried for 2 yrs and my 1st OB said all was fine. Well we decided to get the Lap done.

  15. 15

    Kameelah Jackson — September 11, 2014 @ 1:41 pm

    This made me cry! (I know I’m a big baby). But SO glad you were able to share your story and very glad everything went well for you.

  16. 16

    Hailey — December 15, 2014 @ 2:10 am

    I am currently on day 5 of recovery from my second laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis. I’ve been researching all night concerned about the differences in pain between the two surgeries. I followed every little step and couldn’t understand why I am so ill this late in the game.. Then after reading your blog and your looking for Mexican food, it hit me. I ate spicy food almost all day today. It’s crazy how just one thing can make such a huge difference, even after some time has passed.

    Anyways, that aside, I simply wanted to say your post was a comfort and informative. I have an identical tip sheet of my own for post-op, minus the body pillow. I’ll remember that one, recliner just didn’t do the trick! Thanks again and I wish you the best of luck!

  17. 17

    Kelly — May 25, 2015 @ 3:34 pm

    I just wanted to say thank you for posting this. Very straight forward. I am 5 days out of surgery and I have to say I was expecting way worse. The day of and the next day I was sore but made myself get up and move around. I had surgery on Tuesday and was back to work (teaching) by Thursday. Looking back I should have stayed home Thursday but was okay. 5 days out I am a teeny tiny bit sore but completely fine. Some posts out there really had me worried. I guess it all depends on the person too!
    Some tips: I was definitely nauseous even after telling the anesthesiologist. If you have a long trip home bring something like a bowl or bag! I definitely recommend easing back into diet a long with stool softeners. I didn’t take much of my pain meds and still had this issue. Have someone with you for the first few days. I just felt tired and dizzy so it was helpful to have my husband there. Have clothes that don’t rest by your incisions, including underwear :)

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