Friday, November 15, 2013

Genioplasty. The First Three Days

Home from hospital with pressure bandage - Day 1
It's over. I survived another jaw surgery.  I had a sliding genioplasty advancement three days ago.  My doc says it went so well that my recovery will likely be shorter than usual.

The prep before surgery was almost the same as for the big jaw surgery, except that they did not have to use a nasal gastric tube.  Loved my anesthesiologist.  I was nearly asleep by the time I arrived in the OR.  Just as the last time, all the bad stuff happened when I was asleep.

Afterwards, the nurses didn't have my post op instructions from my doctor so they tried to give me crackers.  Luckily I remembered the instructions were for clear liquids only, but I ate some jello too. Then they fairly quickly had me up and dressed and out of there.  Everything was much easier than the last time.  No nose bleeds, not much nausea (they gave me a patch to prevent it).

The surgery involved cutting through the bottom of my chin bone and repositioning it 6 mm up to shorten the distance between my mouth and chin.  I try not to think about how they did it.  I wasn't worried so much about the surgery, but I was somewhat worried if something unexpected were to happen.  I was paying out of pocket for this surgery since my insurance would not cover it.  I could handle the cost of the surgery but maybe not if things went south. Luckily, they didn't. The total cost including the doctor fees and the hospital were just under $5,000.

I only needed the pain meds for the first day and it wasn't that bad.  Just a dull pain in the chin and a slight headache.  I also had a bit of a sore throat but that went away quickly.  I wasn't very hungry so I didn't mind the clear room temperature or cold liquids.  The real problem was that the hospital didn't have my post op instructions (they had all kinds of computer related issues that day) so they did not pack the incision area with gauze and they didn't give me any gauze to take home.  We only had the thin stuff you use for a minor cut and I went through those pretty quickly.  I was so out of it when I was discharged that I didn't notice anything was wrong until I looked at myself in the car mirror and saw there was blood all over my teeth.  We got it sorted out quickly though.  My husband made a run to the store and got me the thicker gauze and I used that with no problem.  The bleeding stopped in the early evening that day.  The pressure bandage came off the next day.

Since the numbness inside my mouth went away quickly, I was able to eat soft food later on the first day.  The second day I had a scrambled egg for breakfast, but even that seemed too hard to chew without straining.  I gradually worked up from chicken broth and apple juice and jello to yogurt, mashed potatoes and then today I had tuna fish and tomato soup.

There is always so much to do that first day or so...antiseptic rinse twice a day, pain meds, antibiotics, drinking water...a lot of water.  The second day I slept a lot.  I am once again living in my recliner as they wanted me to keep my head elevated.  But compared to the bigger surgery, this was really nothing.  No braces, no rubber bands, no real pain, just watching in horror in the mirror as my face swells up to a big horsey mess.  I had to look back at the photos from the other surgery to remind myself it would be ok and not to worry. I won't look like this forever.
Day 2 and 3

1 comment:

  1. Hi Karen
    Ouch. I must have missed your last post. Glad everything went well. Thinking of you.