Some people can go their entire lives and never go under anesthesia, I have been under anesthesia 9 times in 3 years. Everytime was different.
The very first time I had anesthesia was in 2003, when I had carpal tunnel release surgery. It was an outpatient procedure. I went in, got a private waiting room with a TV and my parents were able to come hang out until they were ready to take me in for surgery. The one constant is the anesthesiologist comes in after the nurses put the IV in, in my hand (and the nurses ask me a ton of questions) and the anesthesiologist asks the same questions again. My first surgery, I had no problems with anesthesia, no reactions to anything except Tylenol with Codiene. I was given Pre-anesthetic and I was out. A lightweight I guess. Makes sense, I am a lightweight when it comes to alcohol too. A cheap date. I woke up and went home groggy, but feeling no pain. I slept that day, my mom had to remind me to chew while I was eating my lunch. I think my moms dog ran out the front door too, but we got her. She’s almost 14 now! The next procedure was on December 3, 2009, for cervical dysplasia. Outpatient. Same place, different doctors. It’s a teaching hospital, so you have to repeat yourself 10 times. I was exhausted before the IV was placed. My husband (then boyfriend) waited with me and my parents were there too. Again, out like a light. I was fine going home, a little groggy but ok. Then my laparoscopy on June 28, 2010 changed it all. I went in, had my IV placed in my forearm, between my wrist and elbow. Boy, did that hurt! I found it a strange place to put an IV. But hey it was a different hospital and I was sure it was ok. Only one nurse came in and just the anesthesiologist too. My dad’s coworker is a nurse there, so, he arranged to be there for my recovery. I was out in no time (as usual). When I woke up, I never imagined what was about to happen. I had a really hard time. Dad’s friend kept telling me to breathe, I kept thinking, what would make me want to hold my breath so much? PAIN and nausea. They gave me a pain killer in the recovery room and I swear to this day I felt like my entire spine and shoulder blades were on fire. Seriously! Burning! I was unable to express my discomfort, I was still pretty out of it. Once I got to the room, I started vomiting. I had to stay overnight in the maternity ward because my hour surgery wound up being 3 hours and I couldn’t wake up. My belly was filled with gas they pumped in so they could see. It took a couple of days to get that out. The next procedure was in March 2011, endoscopy. This was quick. IV placed in my arm, elbow I think. The nurse and anesthesiologist asked the usual questions. This time I could say, yes, I had a problem with anesthesia and toradol, a pain killer and the Tylenol with Codiene. I was rolled into the OR, saw my doctor and don’t remember a thing. I woke up, they gave me a cookie and ginger ale. Yum. Oreos. I was totally fine afterwards. Laparoscopy #2, May 5, 2011, went to the original place to the original gyno and had no problems with nausea or pain, but it did take me a while to wake up. Nothing was really done besides pumping gas into and poking 2 holes in my belly. The gas escaped pretty quickly this time The colonoscopy, May 20,2011. Emergency order by my family doctor. Same doctor who did my endoscopy. Same thing, everything was the same as te time before,except for the prep. I woke up and was told there was nothing found again. This time I asked what anesthesia they used. Propofol. Laparotomy, May 26, 2011! The IV was in my hand. About 10 students were in the OR. I was wheeled in there and they gave me the preanesthetic and I saw my doctor and was out cold. I woke up in my room hooked up to a morphine drip. But I wasn’t nauseous. That was a relief. I slept for days. Apparently, I can’t handle pain medication at all. The morphine knocked me out, then when switched to dilauded, that knocked me out too. Motrin was my last choice. I had had an allergic reaction to Vicodin the week before surgery. The next procedure was the Egg Retrieval, September 26, 2011. They asked me all the usual questions and placed my IV and off I went into La la land. I woke up ok. A little nauseous, but I was before I went in. Laparoscopy #3, May 24, 2012, non teaching hospital. It was wonderful. Everyone was nice and friendly. One nurse confirmed the information that I gave them the day before over the phone. Then I met with the anesthesiologist. She made me feel safe and sound. I told her of my past surgeries and my reactions and that the only times I felt great was after being on propofol. She agreed that’s what she would do. We got into the OR, she gave me the preanesthetic and they said to scoot over to the doctor, I just remember giggling and that was it. I felt fabulous after surgery. Even my brief awakening in the recovery room was peaceful. I ate dinner when I got to my room after a 5 hour surgery. Laparoscopy #4, September 27, 2012. Same place different anesthesiologist. Looking back, probably should have followed my gut and cancelled. But I felt so good since that last surgery so I wanted to get it done, so we could move forward with our family planning. It didn’t go well, but I am alive, thankfully. It took me a long time to recover. I was sick, groggy and now even foggier than before. I am having another surgery soon to remove my destroyed Fallopian tube. I’ve already put in a call to find out when the first anesthesiologist is available. I also had a chance to tell the department how horrible that other one was. My surgeon even said I should follow my gut next time and if it doesn’t feel right deep down. Don’t do it. I’m lucky I woke up!