I FINALLY got my port removed! The surgery was pretty quick, only about 30 minutes, but I had to get to the hospital an hour and a half early for check-in and vitals and all sorts of paperwork. When I had the port put in, I was really glad to be given full anesthesia, but I wouldn't have really minded being awake for the removal. Instead of putting me all the way under, I just got gas and was in kind of a "twilight" state. I don't remember anything, but I woke up really fast! When I woke up, I was moving from the operating room to the "wakeup" room, and I totally thought I was on my couch at home - I was so confused because the couch was moving so much!
My surgeon was really young and nice - she came in beforehand to introduce herself and make sure I didn't have any questions. Mostly I just wanted it out as soon as I could!
The worst part by far was having the IV put in - I hadn't been able to eat or drink for about 12 hours prior to surgery, so I was pretty dehydrated by the time I got there, and they couldn't get the IV in my vein. It hurt more than any needle I've ever had, and they stuck me four times (plus wiggling... eugh) before they finally gave me the gas and I fell asleep before they got the IV in. They offered to give me gas before they tried to IV me, but I said it was ok. I wish I'd taken the gas! When I woke up, my hand hurt way more than my incision!
So far, I haven't really had much pain - I'd say it's comparable to the scrapes I'd get falling off my bike as a kid. It's painful, but it's definitely not hindering me at all, and it's WAY better than the incision from my biopsy or when I had the port put in. One thing that I wasn't expecting was the empty space I can feel where the line was under my skin, and the squishing sounds that occasionally come from my chest where it's filling back in the areas where the line was running. It was really unnerving the first time it happened, but now it's not as bad.
The coolest part is that my surgeon let me bring my port home! My little brother wasn't allowed to keep his, so he was totally jealous when he got home from school and saw that I'd gotten to bring mine home!
My port! The round part was under my side (where they accessed me) and the tubing ran under my skin from my ribs into my heart... it's so weird to think that was under my skin for seven months!
On the hair front, it's getting much longer, but still extremely thin. It's filling in a bit more in some places, but not a whole lot. I'm crossing my fingers that it'll start to thicken up by New Years...
Lots of Love,