View Full Version : Hospital Stay

08-01-2006, 09:06 PM
Just wondering while you are in hospital do you remember any of your hospital stay?
As my surgeon told me ill be there 7 - 10 days will i ever have the energy too sit up and be able to talk and have a laugh with my family?
Because if i can't i don't really want many visitors.
Ill also be in ICU for one day is this common?

08-01-2006, 11:31 PM

It varies a lot by patient. I was in the hospital 14 days, and did not want to see anyone for the first 12. Most patients tell me that they didn't really want visitors.

I think that most patients who have anterior surgery have a chest tube, and therefore end up in ICU for the first day.


08-02-2006, 09:32 AM
I was in the hospital for seven days. Was originally told it would be 10 days so I was doing pretty good. I was in ICU for 5. Only 3 of those days were for a real medical purpose. The remaining 2 were because there were no available beds in the ortho wing. I did not wish to see anyone other than my husband, parents and children for the first 5 days or so. I was feeling awful, looked worse and was generally exhausted. My earliest memory was waking up the day after surgery. There were moments during the first 2 days where I was in and out thanks to the morphine/dilaudid. As you improve, which magically happens a little each day, you become more alert. You will probably have moments that you do not remember, but for the most part you should be relatively alert.

08-02-2006, 12:27 PM
I was in the hospital for 10 days. The first 2 days were spent in Pediatric ICU while waiting for a bed to open up in Special Care ICU where I spent the next 3 days. The last 5 days I was on the ortho floor in a regular room. My hubby and parents spent the first 4 days with me and my in-laws visited on night 4.

I had two other visitors after I was in my reg. room and I thought I looked and felt fine, but months later found out that they were upset to see me in the condition I was in so please take into consideration your visitor's feelings when inviting people to visit....it may be more than they can handle. Luckily my visitors kept their feelings hidden while visiting me so I had no idea that it bothered them, but I did feel badly about it when they told me. They said that they were so used to me being so tough and full of energy that seeing me in the hospital bed with all kinds of contraptions hooked up to me and seeing me in some pain was difficult for them.

08-03-2006, 08:02 AM
I was in the hospital for 5 days, and I did appreciate visitors, but only a few at a time, and if they were quiet. I had a big group of my girlfriends come by, and while I knew it was so sweet of them to come and show support, it was too much for me to handle. In fact, I started to shake uncontrollably while they were there. So, a few visitores to sit quietly = good. A bunch of people in and out and people who just want to chat & chat = bad. I will say by the end of my stay my favorite thing was to sit in a wheelchair and have somebody push me around the hospital. It was nice to get out of the room, and sitting up is good for you!

08-03-2006, 12:41 PM
I was in for ten days and requested family only for the entire time and was glad I did. I love my friends, but it's too much. I needed my family there and they rotated shifts, so I was hardly ever alone. This was the best thing ever. If you can, have a schedule set up for family before you go in, so you don't go for hours without a visitor

08-03-2006, 01:59 PM
Great advice Heidi! Some people just can't handle seeing you with all the tubes and such. When they were transferring my daughter from the recovery room to the Intermediate Care Unit, we walked right by my mom and she didn't even recognize my daugther! My poor husband. I had wanted to go out to the waiting room and explain to my husband, daughter and parents what they would be seeing so they would be prepared. Well, they couldn't wait and came rushing in the room before I could get to them. My husband had to leave the room. He went to the bathroom and composed himself, but later told me he almost passed out (I think he may have even vomited). They just weren't prepared for what they saw. Jamie came out of recovery with tubes/I.V.'s that we weren't expecting, so it was very shocking to see all of that plus the swelling in her body.

You will have plenty of recovery time at home for visitors and you will probably appreciate those visitors more than the ones who come to the hospital.

Mary Lou

08-03-2006, 02:21 PM
I was in the hospital for seven days-like they had told me I would be. Only the day of the surgery in ICU, actually got a private room that day but it wasn't in the ortho wing and therefore the whole week there was harder for the nurses and me b/c they didn't have special and big cases like myself-only patients who had small operations done. I had my parents there a lot, and hubby stayed all the time mostly, he even got a bed at some point. Thinking back, I had some visitors, but never too much at a time, and I didn't want them to stay long and did feel stressed and already tired, weak and even feverish at times so it didn't help much the first few days. After day 3 or 4, it was better. This last time I was in 5 days and only wanted my parents and hubby there. Some people don't get how badly we feel and all we're hooked on, and so it's good to remind them and tell them not to come early in the week after the operation, or to even come home instead. Both surgeries I started walking a bit by day three. Also, I got a lot of flowers, but it sucks the oxygen out of the room and all the smell made me nautious, so we put them in the bathroom tub. What a waste, but a nice sentiment.

08-08-2006, 03:16 AM
Hi Lee. I was in hospital for a week with no time in ICU. However my op was posteria so it may differ to yours. I don't remember anything from the first 3 days except that on the 3rd, i had about 13 visitors all at the one time. It was too much for me and i started vomitting and shaking really badly. Once they left, i was sick the rest of that day and night. I only had my mum, dad, sister and boyfriend there for the remainder of my stay and it was much better. They would sit and read and i would do puzzles with my dad from the 4th day. I could read for 15 mins at a time without too much pain and would go on little slow walks up and down the hospital corridors from the 5th day at night when i wasn't allowed any meds. By about the 6th day, i was screaming to get the hell out of there. I was getting major cablin fever and there were not enough puzzles in the world to keep me occupied.

08-08-2006, 08:00 AM
About flowers: My husband sent nightly updates to family and friends via e-mail and the first night he sent an e-mail asking that no one send flowers because I'm slightly allergic to them and we knew that being in a small hospital room full of flowers would not be good. His uncle was in Iraq and ordered flowers before I went into the hospital, they arrived the day after my surgery. Luckily, I was ok with that one bouquet, but if you can't handle flowers at all, it's good to let your family and friends know ahead of time.

As for lots of visitors at once, if you're sharing a room, please also take into consideration the person recovering next to you. I had an elderly roommate on my last night who had a very large family who visited from early in the afternoon through the evening. At times, there were 10 ppl including small children in the room. They had the tv on and brought board games to amuse the kids and they were all talking loudly over the tv so that my roommate, who was hard of hearing, could hear them. The nurses had to continually ask them to go to the waiting room and only allow 2-3 visitors at a time. They would yell at the nurses every time they were asked to do this. Although they knew I was recovering from major surgery, it was as if they did not care and it was very upsetting to me and made it difficult to rest. The following morning, they were all back at 6am to see their mother off to her surgery and they bumped my bed a few times because they could not all fit in the room. Thank goodness I left later that morning....

08-08-2006, 05:58 PM

I know what you mean. Last time this December it happened to me. At some point there was about 15 people talking about what they wanted for Xmas to each other(like the new Xbox, :rolleyes: ) and the younger people were SO loud. We kept asking the nurses to make them leave or shut up and even the lady who had surgery kept telling her own family not to come, but they were stobburn! Then they talked about Xmas supper, and how she had to go to rehab and miss it, and some were fighting and saying she HAD to be there since it's tradition, yadda ya...Some nurses don't respect the policy to tell their patients not to have more than 2 visitors at a time. Private rooms are better but hard to get I know.

Flowers from what I know suck oxygen where plants do the opposite.

08-08-2006, 06:41 PM
I was one of the lucky ones...had a private room in both ICU and in the ortho wing. :p

08-08-2006, 07:13 PM
I was in the University of Chicago for 5 days after my re-op last year - Monday, all day surgery, Monday night in ICU; Tuesday morning out of bed (against my will and with about 5 people dragging all my tubes and wires), fit for my brace and moved to ortho(?) floor by noon that day. I am a nurse, so I had pre-arranged a private room ... traded it for my Harrington Rod since both my doctor and I wanted it. I also had pre-arranged 2 nurse friends to stay 24/7 with one of them there at all times. My doctor highly approved of this, even arranged for a cot to be brought to the room for her. The last 3 days are kind of blurred together ... I hated every minute of it and the pain was more than I ever expected. But I was pumped full of Dilaudid for the trip home on Friday and, after a bit of a rocky start settling in, eventually found a routine that fit for me, which was medication every 2 hours around the clock for a couple of weeks. 18 months later I still look back and wince a little, glad it's over and hopeful to only continue to get stronger.

green m&m
08-08-2006, 08:33 PM
Ugh. that's terrible that family members of roomates can be so inconsiderate. I hope I get a private room next week when I go for my surgery (non-scoli surg)... in theory I should since the hospital I goto only has private rooms for all the onco units..

08-09-2006, 08:59 AM

Just sent you a private message.


08-09-2006, 10:52 AM
Chris, Sent you an answer and my private e-mail. Hope you get them both. Let me know if you don't. MaryLou

08-09-2006, 11:11 AM
Hi Leelee,
I am home just a week and half from my surgery and 8 days in hospital, so it is fresh in my mind. The surgeon had told me that a day in intensive care is possible, however, I did not need it after surgery and went direct to my room. The first roommate I got was a 91 year old woman with dementia. Everyone who came in had to yell at her to be heard--the nurses, family, etc. I knew right away it was an awful place to recover in, so I asked the nurse for another room. They found me one, luckily, with a 71 year old woman recovering from a knee replacement who had developed blood clots. We were a much better match since we were both in pain, moaning, and couldn't get out of bed. Also, if one of us dropped or lost our nurse call light, the other could ring for one to come help us.

As far as visitors other than immediate family, I guess some came during the first three days and I was sleeping most of the time, so they signed a note that they had been there and left the note!! The 4th to 6th day when they took the tubes out and wanted me to get up and move around, I was in too much pain to even want anyone around. By the 7th day, I was on better meds and able to move a bit and began to enjoy my company. The 8th day I had a friend who stayed an hour; I enjoyed her visit, but an hour was almost too long for me to keep my eyes open. So keep your visits short!!

Now I have been home a week and a half and I really enjoy the phone calls, short visits, etc. But the thing is that you will still get tired quickly and need to keep everything short!!!

It is rough road to go on, but well traveled before you; I wish you well.


08-09-2006, 02:50 PM
I was in the hospital 8 days the first time. 5 of those were in ICU. I had anterior and posterior. I had tubes running everywhere. I remember waking up from my surgery and my husband, sister-in-law and mother-in-law were there. My surgery took longer than expected so they did not want to leave my husband alone in case something happened. I barely remember being in my room or myy husband visiting me the first couple of days. I had my surgeries 2 days apart. After the second surgery which took less time than expected I remember my husband being there when I woke up but not much after that. A few days later he brought my grandkids to see me ,I know I looked awful because I still had a few tubes like my IV, catherater and chest tube. I think my arterior line was out. I wish he had not brought them but they begged him to see me. Afterwards he said he wished he had not brought them because they were worried about me afterwards.
I know I looked awful for a long time. After my stuff was unhooked and I was able to get up on my own I looked better and felt lots better. Every day I felt stronger. It was rough to get through.


Jacque's Mom
08-09-2006, 04:40 PM
I will never forget, I am in the hospital a few days after surgery (that was when you could not get out of bed as you were strapped to the back of your pre-surgery body cast) and a friend of mine came to visit me. She sat on my bed and complained about her back hurting!!!! Can you imagine? When I had the partial rod removal, my roommate would call her sister in California in the middle of the night and complain to her that she couldn't sleep. Well neither could I with her talking so loud. The final one, my scapular resection, my roommate was in her late 20's but her mother was there 24/7, slept on the chair the two nights that I was there and all you heard was "mom, put my socks on, i'm cold, get me water, do this, do that" etc. It's amazing isn't it? I laugh about it now but it wasn't funny then. Enjoy your day....LYNN