I’m going to break this down in to parts because, it really does happen in parts: The decision, the prep work, the actual surgery, and recovery. This would be the longest, most boring blog ever if I did it all at once. Plus, everyone loves a good cliff hanger.
If you are anywhere in the myomectomy process, I hope these posts can be a guide for getting through and what to expect.
I went to my doctor for a consult after she had the opportunity to review the ultrasound images. I had fluid on my kidney, several fibroids all around my uterus, including one in the back of my uterus that “died” (the blood flow cut off), which is what caused my lower back pain. Basically, my uterus was like a big ol’ bag of marbles. Well, a small sack stuffed with marbles? She couldn’t say how long they’d been growing, since no other doctor had made me aware of them. She couldn’t tell me how fast they grew, for the same reason. She spoke with me about my options: Just “wait and see” since they weren’t causing too many symptoms (mainly heavy bleeding), or get them removed. Since I wanted to have children, she didn’t recommend UAE (Uterine Fibroid Embolization). Her recommendation was to get them removed because I wanted to have children but mainly because of the fluid on my kidney. Her concern was that there could be issues with my kidneys that could become serious. Little did she know, I had pretty much made up my mind on day one that these suckers had to go. She did not have to convince me to have surgery.
After the ultrasound and the consult, my GYN referred me to a surgeon. My doctor is awesome, but doesn’t do any thing but examinations /basic gynecological services and tests. No baby delivery. No surgeries. Just exams. Which I guess other doctors in the area love, because she gives them a lot of referrals and a lot of business.
She referred me to a doctor who is one of the best in the field: Dr. M. He is tops in my region (Washington DC area), and known nationally. He also had a personal stamp of approval- a friend of mine’s girlfriend also had her surgery with this doctor earlier in the year. He thought the doctor was awesome, and Tim* is very picky. If he liked this doctor for his boo, I knew he was good. But even with T’s stamp of approval, I did my research, which I highly suggest. DO YOUR RESEARCH. Google. Ask anyone you might know personally in the medical field what they may know about the doctor. Ask people who have been through this who they used. This person is going into your body with sharp instruments and basically has your life in his/her hands. Consult with more than one surgeon/OBGYN if you need to. Me, I want to know everything when I pick a doctor: What were other patients’ experiences? Where did they go to school? Where did they do their residency? Have they written any papers? What certifications or specialties do they have? Do they like Chipoltle? I need to know.
Fortunately for me, I was sold on visit one. O and I went for the first in April. Dr M** was awesome: he had Saturday hours, multiple locations, and his staff was friendly. The only downside was the wait. We did wait for a long time. However, I’ve just come to take this as part of the deal of healthcare in America. Especially of you have a doctor who is good with a lot of patients. His staff did the best they could….I guess
Here’s where he sold me: I had my records sent from my GYN….except, they never sent them. Womp. So I’m going in prepared to talk with this man in detail about whats on the ultrasound, and he didn’t even have them. BUT what he did, was based on my symptoms and the information I could give, he drew what my uterus looked like with the fibroids and could describe the symptoms I had but hadn’t said. You sir, are magical. We agree, surgery to remedy this.
Another piece of advice: Bring questions. Write them down, use your phone or tablet note app, whatever, but bring all of your questions and ask them. Also, be prepared to take notes and write down the answers the doctor gives you.
O and I discussed surgery and my options over brunch at a diner. I called my mom and let her know what was going on, and asked if she wanted to come down. Of course she did. So that Monday, I called Dr. M’s office and set the surgery date: June 7, 2013
Next: Part Two: The Preparation
*His name is not Tim. I do not use any real names in this blog without permission
** Similarly, if you are interested in the Details for Dr M, please contact me.