Monday, June 19, 2017

Margaret's operation

It is Tuesday 13th June and we head to the Hospital Universitario Miguel Servet in Zaragoza getting there at 10:40. Margaret checks in and at 14:45 is taken to the operating theatre for the operation on her lower back.

At 20:20 she is returned to her room after spending a while in recovery and she is bright and alert. Three of her lower vertebrae have been secured with 2 titanium plates, one at each side, held in place by 6 screws. This is prevent further degeneration and provide support.

She remains in bed all day Wednesday but on Thursday feels that she wants to get up - she is given permission to sit on her bed which she is able to do for several minutes until she starts to feel a little faint and dizzy.

On Friday she again sits on her bed and in the chair, longer this time and in the afternoon has a slow, short walk.

She has 28 staples holding her wound together as well as 2 tubes which are effectively draining her kidneys into bottles, a catheter tube and bag and a needle into the back of her hand through which she is fed with a calming drip including pain relief 

On Saturday all her tubes are removed and she walks along the hospital corridor at a slightly faster pace. On Sunday she even manages to walk up and down 2 flights of stairs. Monday she is discharged. 

What a recovery! However, now she has to take things easy for a while. I had imagined taking Margaret from the hospital 10 days after the operation in a wheelchair - Margaret imagined at least she would be on crutches. This would be followed by a few months of gradually getting back on her feet and gentle physiotherapy. Today the surgeon said she should take gentle exercise such as walking to the village bar for a coffee - very Spanish! We'll see how it goes, maybe the surgeon doesn't know that our village bar is quite a distance away so we'll start off with a few walks around the garden.

We are just so full of gratitude to the surgeon and the hospital for the fact that the expertise and technology exist to make all this possible.

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