Friday, August 2, 2013

A Week Post-Op

I know that I shouldn't be too pessimistic, but right now I don't feel that I will ever work again, much less blog, write law review articles, teach, and all the rest of what I used to.

I am no longer reliant on hydrocodone to control the pain, but there's nothing left in me.  I am reduced to watching television, reading Dave Barry books, and almost blogging this.  Almost.  The number of typing errors that I have made just scares the wits out of me.

You are never too young to worry about heart disease.  Never.  I intend to write an article for PJMedia (assuming that I get that while) about our culture fails to get the severity of heart surgery through to the general population, and the importance of healthy lifestyle habits.

UPDATE: Thank you all for the encouraging responses, especially those who are also members of the tribe of barnyard animal hybrids!  The fog started to lift this afternoon, and I was again solving pretty trivial problems (why can't I get the latest JDK to install?) without suffering.  I have turned ScopeRoller ordering back on as well.


Retired Geezer said...

I'm sorry you're not feeling stronger yet.

Best Wishes,

coderpunk said...

I remember when I had to spend 3 weeks bed-ridden. I had grand plans for things I was going to read and write but in the end watched several seasons of Law and Order. Try not to stress out over it, you'll be back better than ever sooner than you realize.

Sebastian said...

My Grandfather had heart valve replacement surgery. He had rheumatic fever as a child, before the days of penicillin. It damaged his heart valve, and he lived with it for many years until his early 60s, when the shortness of breath just became too much for him.

When he was only slightly older than you are now, he had major open heart surgery (no going through the ribs or up arteries in those days) to replace his aortic valve with a biomechanical one. His recovery took several months, but he was much better at the end of it than he was going into it. He had a lot of frustrations too, because the surgery took a lot out of him.

You will get better. It just may take some time. Hang in there.

John Cunningham said...

I am pulling for you, Clayton, hang in there and take your time. I will hold off on the horse jokes for a while.

John said...

Hang in there. I had a bypass in 2007 and it takes months to get over it. If you ever do. I did three miles on the treadmill today.

J. Glenn Wade said...

I understand. Give it time. 1 week of recovery for each inch of incision. And you had work inside as well as the outside location.
Best wishes on recovery

J. Glenn Wade said...

I understand. Give it time. 1 week of recovery for each inch of incision. Plus you had work inside as well as the external incision.
Best wishes on recovery

jdmorse said...

Hi Clayton,

I had this same surgery last December 4th. Bovine instead of equine, so moo.
A lot of what is happening now is directly related to the after-effects of the anesthesia. I had hallucinations and vivid dreams for at least a month, post surgery. After eight months, I'm not sure if my sense of taste is back to normal, or I've gotten used to what things taste like now. I'm not sure it really matters. You're going to get weepy for no reason from time to time. Exercise is always good. My issue with exercising isn't my heart, but my feet. Going to try swimming.
You will get better; have patience, I certainly didn't. Remind yourself that even though the procedure was minimally invasive, it was still major surgery. A lot of trauma happened in your chest and it needs time to heal. Bill of Bills Idle Mind referred me to your direction, so it's all his fault.
People will come out of the woodwork to check up on you; try to notice. I had to have it spelled out.
If you want, we can start a conversation via email, or leave on your blog.
I've just started Johns Idle Hands and I don't really have all the mechanics of it down yet, but you could try contacting me there.

Jon said...

Glad to hear from you, and hope you continue to recover quickly.

asdf said...

Clayton, I've had two stent operations, but nothing more serious. My brother however had bypass and kidney transplant. He felt like you for a few months, but he got better. Give it time. You'll get better too. You'll be writing and working quicker than you can guess, and this will be just a bad dream.

macweave said...

Don't despair ! The first week is the worst, you will slowly recover your strength and then some. Been There done that. The burst of energy after a couple of weeks can lead to later problems if not moderated with (un)common sense. Be of good cheer.

Jim said...

I'm thankful that I can't relate to your situation as I've never had a serious operation, but I can imagine that the trauma of something that invasive will take some time to wind down. I'm sure this will pass and you'll be back to your old self.

I'll be praying for you.


Cincinnatus said...

Clayton, its awful serious surgery. That you are well enough to complain about how you don't feel well is a good sign (if that made any sense).

I'm confident you'll recover soon.

Thanks for posting something, its good to hear from you.

BFR said...


Do not underestimate the clearance time for general anesthesia agents.

They are CNS depressants and bind to fats, so they can have a lingering, slowly decreasing effect. CNS agents are "downers" and people have varying effects. Give it some time. Also, cardiac surgery, even the less invasive as your type, is still major and stressful. Your emotional response is quite common, and it can take a while for endorphins to replenish.

Rob K said...

You'll be fine, and soon you'll be feeling better than you have in a long time.

Robert Langham said...

Just try and stay interested in the process! Got you on the prayer list, you patriot!

Jeffro said...

I had a quad bypass and a cryo-maze procedure done. I sustained some nerve damage during the operation.

Five months before I got back to work. You aren't going to be picking ANYTHING up for several months without making your chest plates grind, much less do anything else. You're just gonna have to be patient and follow their advice.

Clayton Cramer said...

Jeffro, you make me the more grateful for the relatively minor operation I had. They didn't have to open the ribcage to do this.