Thursday, December 31, 2015

Emergency Surgery With Dr.Sal Lettieri

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of emotions.  Once again I am stuck in either a hospital bed or now in my own bed. I ran into the same problem I had with the first surgery. Dr. Lettieri warned me this surgery would be tedious. Besides the complications of waking me up from the first surgery the right side of my face has swollen up and began to drain not long after I came home from the first visit to the hospital.

Dr. Lettieri was out of the country, I called his office and was able to see another surgeon at Mayo Clinic.  Unfortunately the inflammation needed to be drained.  A fistula had formed.  Dr. Lettieri explained to Eric after surgery he was afraid this may happen. While he was in surgery the paraded gland (saliva gland) was in the way of the nerve he needed to connect with. Dr. Lettieri could not get to the nerve he needed without disturbing the paraded gland.  In the long run this slight unfortunate problem was unavoidable.

When Dr. Lettieri arrived home I saw him right away, and he arranged surgery immediately.  I am now at home, recovering with a drain hanging from my head. I was able to see Dr. Lettieri in his office on Monday he took the head wrap off, left the drain in gave me an anti-biotic and now we wait.

How am I feeling? I am not on pain pills, you know how I hate those. With that being said, I also hate not sleeping.  It's always a fight with me to take the medicine and sleep or live with the pain and use another source for sleeping.  I guess that was clear as mud.....ha ha.  My honest feeling is some pain, but grateful for a surgeon who knows what he is doing and is attentive to my health needs.  Once again I have been lead to a surgeon who I love.  In fact when his office called on Monday to get me in I advised Sharon his assistant "I will not be seeing any surgeon but Dr. Lettieri, I will wait if I have to."  I didn't she and he got me right in.  I want to hug him every time I see him, he is a breath of fresh air--but not necessarily a hugger.

So for now I lay in bed, work my Nerium business when I can, nurse my wounds and again thank the Lord for seeing me through a rough surgery.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Surgery with Doctor Lettieri

 It's been difficult to blog current events. I've signed a book deal, however I am going to keep up my blog.  Soon it will have the logo from my book. I will also have a FB page for caregivers, survivors, or for anyone wanting to know how to comfort a friend, family member or loved one during and after cancer has been diagnosed.

I entered the Mayo Clinic Hospital in the early morning of December 2nd, 2015.  The last surgery I had with Dr. Lettieri was successful.  He took a nerve from my leg masterfully entered behind my left
ear through the left side of my face under my lip.  We were told if the surgery was a success we would feel it grow one inch per month.  It has done just that and now it is time to finish the job.  This is a very tedious surgery, trying to find a nerve that is workable from the right side of my face will take a few hours.

When I woke up in recovery, it was a little touch and go scary for Eric--not really sure if I was having a stroke or reaction to medicine--either way I dry heaved for over 24 hours, did you know dry heaving hurts?

After neurology was quickly called to the rescue I had CT-PT-MRI and brains scans--no sign of stroke--however since I was still in much pain and dry heaving I was kept for longer than expected.
My surgeon Dr. Lettieri is in Italy......What the Heck? Doctors get vacations?

I needed to go to Mayo Clinic since the surgery sight is bleeding.  I was temporarily fixed up, but will not be seeing another Surgeon until Dr. Lettieri gets back. (Monday)  There was nothing wrong with the surgeon I was able to see, but my ultimate choice is Dr. Lettieri--FOREVER- I made the mistake of going to Cleveland Clinic on a suggestion --HUGE MISTAKE --  I will never do that again.

While working on the nerve in my face, Dr. Lettieri had no choice but to try and work around my paraded gland.  I am well aware of this gland and the damage that can happen if I don't get it fixed but I am not seeing anyone else but Dr. Lettieri. The gland for those of you who don't know is the gland where your saliva generates. This gland was compromised my face has backed up blood, either running down my throat or running out of my incision.  We cannot keep it controlled with our own packing.

I'm looking forward to seeing Dr, Lettieri next week.  with more updates to come.