Surgery and Remicade

The rule is if you need surgery you need to plan it at least 6 weeks after your last Remicade injection.  The reasons being remicade compromises the immune system, and surgery not only leaves someone vulnerable to infection, but also can leave the body weakened and unable to fight infection as well.

The problem I had was that I not only had a gallbladder full of gallstones, which may have been able to wait the 5 more weeks for surgery, but that it was infected.  Once all my doctors realized the gallbladder was infected it they were very quickly on the same page that it needed to be removed immediately.  The infection I already had was more dangerous than a hypothetical one I could possibly get.

The great thing is that when the removed the gallbladder they removed all the infection.  Blood test showed that they got it before it entered any other part of my body.  I feel really fortunate.  I am so glad I listened to my body and went into the emergency room.  A gallbladder full of stones is painful as heck but an infected organ in someone with a compromised immune system can be life threatening.

After care is a bit of an issue but nothing that can’t be handled.  I was given a private room in the hospital to limit my contact with other people.  My husband spent my day in the hospital vacuuming my room and scrubbing my bathroom, making sure I had clean sheets, etc.

I need to limit my company, which is very hard because I love people and company and I also hate to tell people they can’t see me.  My grandmother seemed hurt when I suggested she didn’t need to come to the hospital and bring my dad and his girlfriend.  I dearly wanted to see her, and found it easy just to risk it and let her come.  My family I need of course and they are taking precautions like showering as soon as they get home and washing their hands and using antibacterial gel when they come into my room.  I am restricted to my room because I am not a great housekeeper in the first place and it will be much easier to ask my family to keep my room sterile than the whole house.

If someone really wants to visit me I need to make sure they haven’t been ill, or around anyone who is ill and that they wear a face mask while they are visiting.  I feel like I am being a little paranoid and maybe I am, but if I get sick my body won’t be able to fight it like it would normally.

I woke last night thinking I was silly, and that I should just act normal. My energy level is ok and I actually feel decent with the pain meds.  But I woke and spoke with a family member and realize I am doing the best thing for my body, and the people who love me.  I am going to try not to worry about people thinking I am being silly or paranoid, not even when that person is me.  I am just going to allow myself to be a little extra high maintenance for the next week or two.

My doctor said he normally sends people back to work in a week or two.

I am going to keep this limited exposure at least until I see the surgeon for a follow up next week. Maybe a less limited expose for the week after,and I plan on going back to work in two weeks.

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2 Comments

Filed under Remicade, surgery

2 responses to “Surgery and Remicade

  1. I’m sorry this has happened after you started to feel better after the infusion. It sounds like you have a great support system built in to help you. Sometimes, that is what we need to keep us from doing things we know is not always in our best interest. Take care and get lots of rest.

  2. Ugh! How horrible! Well, it seems like you are handling this all very well. Hopefully you can find some entertaining things on the internet to keep your spirits up! Get some rest and feel better! XOXOXO

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