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  1. #1
    Registered User bstockton's Avatar
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    Bstockton's recovery log from Laparoscopic Inguinal Hernia surgery

    Well, yesterday I went under the knife to get my inguinal hernia repaired. I thought I'd keep a daily log of my recovery progress to help out those considering the same procedure and wondering what it and your recovery might be like.
    NOTE: I was lucky enough to be able to have laparoscopic surgery as opposed to open surgery. If you're undergoing open you will have a longer recovery process from what I understand. I'm not a surgeon and won't try to describe the actual procedure here, go research them.

    First, a bit of background on me. I'm 21, a senior in college and have been lifting and eating seriously for about a year. I also play rugby (4 years) and started training in Muay Thai 6 weeks ago. I'm 6'2" and last week I weighed in at 188 lbs at 7.5% bf. Max deadlift is 365, squat to parallel is 255, and I maintain good form on all my lifts. My diet is very clean, in season I was eating 50p 15f 90c x 6 meals a day and maintaining. I drink 2-3 gallons of water a day (including workouts).

    ONSET
    I'm a pretty active person, I have rugby practice 4 days a week for two hours including conditioning and skill work, matches on saturdays, and lift on a lower volume/intensity program 4 days a week during rugby season. Muay thai training is 2 days/week for 1-2 hours. I can't pinpoint the exact moment it happened, when I train/practice/play I'm way too focused. All I know is that on September 11th after a rugby match I noticed a small bump on the right side of my groin. I suspected it might be a hernia, but because it was senior year of rugby and it wasn't causing me pain (and because I'm stubborn) I decided to just play/lift through it. I continued training and playing until the end of the season, when I decided to get it checked out. By this time the small bump had grown to maybe half of a golf ball, but still wasn't causing me any pain.

    CONSULT
    After the season ended I went to my school's health services, who basically said "you're right it's a hernia, you need a surgical consult." I got an appointment 2 days later and met with my surgeon, he asked me some questions and poked at it a bit, described the entire procedure and answered all of my questions. His prognosis at that time was LIGHT walking and cardio soon after the procedure, no lifting more than 40 lbs for two weeks, then I could resume LIGHT weights and ease very slowly back into it. We'll see how accurate that is as I go along.

    DAY OF THE PROCEDURE
    I called the hospital the day before to find out my arrival time/estimated procedure time. I was told to arrive at noon for a 2:30 procedure, and to bring a photo ID and someone to drive me home, as I would be put under general anesthetic for the procedure. No eating after midnight, and I could drink water up to 3 hours before my procedure. I was drinking Xtend (I'm a huge scivation fan/addict ) up until 11:30 am.
    I checked in at 11:50 and was taken back almost immediately. I changed into a gown and they did the usual height, weight, blood pressure, etc. I was taken to a bed and a nurse came in and asked me a ton of questions confirming my identity and what procedure I was having done, and making sure I hadn't eaten since midnight. When she was finished another nurse came in and started my IV, then gave me a shot of anti-clotting medication. At this point it was around 12:30, and I just chatted with my mom and listen to my ipod for a long time.
    At around 2:15 I was taken to pre-anesthesia where they confirmed my identity again. I met with the anesthesiologist and my surgeon again, they made sure nothing had changed since my consultation, and explained what was going to happen. I was taken into the OR at around 3, and talked with the nurses while the anesthesiologist gave me stuff to relax. He put a mask over my mouth after a bit and I was out in about 3 seconds.
    I remember being conscious at around 5:30 and was given a small glass of water and graham crackers. They told me I had to go to the bathroom before I would be allowed to leave. Trouble was, I was still somewhat numb in the groin area, so it took three hours and two gallons of water before I was finally able to go home. During that time I took a few walks around the ambulatory. Pain wasn't too bad as long as I squatted in and out of my chair, and walked around slightly leaning forward. I couldn't straighten up completely because my abs were sore. At that point I was also on 2 vicodin.
    I drank the shake I brought as I was wheeled out of the hospital (scivation whey of course. I got some great looks). I should note that I wasn't feeling nauseous at all after the procedure, the doc said some people are really nauseous and so shouldn't eat. I got home and had some eggs but didn't want to push it. I went to bed almost immediately after eating, around 10 pm. That night I woke up multiple times to go to the bathroom as the numbing started to wear off and the two gallons started to catch up with me. It took a few times to get into/out of bed without some pain, but it wasn't too bad.

    DAY 1 - 10/22
    I got up to use the bathroom at 7 am and took a couple vicodin because the pain got a lot worse. I went back to sleep until 9:30. When I got up again, I started my typical off day diet, even though I wasn't really hungry. 50p, 15f, and 60c (I'm a straight up ectomorph). I ate every 3 hours as usual, despite not being hungry all day. I also had around a gallon and a half of water with Xtend through the day. At 1 I had some Ibuprofen when the pain started to come back (the nurse recommended alternating it with vicodin for pain).
    The bruising and swelling was a bit worse than the day before, the pics attached show it. No more 6 pack and semi-obliques, but I'm still holding on to some of my ab veins .
    The nurse recommended getting up and walking around rather than laying in bed or sitting all day, so I went for about a mile walk in the afternoon. I felt pretty good, and was able to straighten up more as my abs loosened up.
    Just a relaxing day, the only time I was in any pain after the morning was when I walked to the bathroom. The location of a full bladder kind of pushes right where they did some work.

    Well that's enough for today, I'll update this as my recovery progresses and I get back at regular activities. I hope this will helpful to those of you who may have to have the same procedure.
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  2. #2
    Registered User bstockton's Avatar
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    DAY 2 - 10/23

    Woke up at 7 am to go to the bathroom and had some pain, less than yesterday but still significant. I took only 1 vicodin and slept until 9.
    I also showered this morning for the first time since my surgery. My incisions were essentially "glued" shut with some breathable clear stuff so I could shower. Supposedly this also helps reduce scarring. I noticed much less pain from movement today. I was able to get in an out of cars and my bed with almost no issues.
    Right now I need to go to work from 10pm-2am, I'm head of the audio crew at my theater, so we'll see how that goes. Essentially I'm going to be giving directions. I'm taking a vicodin beforehand, so it should be fine. I won't be lifting more than 40 lbs per doctors orders anyways.

    A couple things I left out from yesterday's post: during surgery they give you a breathing tube (after you're out of course), so I had a sore throat yesterday but that's gone today. After you're out they also pump carbon dioxide into your abdomen to puff it up a little so the surgeon can see. I didn't have any lasting effects, but apparently sometimes if the gas isn't completely drained it can cause you pain between your shoulder blades, which can be fixed by walking around. Finally, they strap you down. If everyone wasn't so nice it would have been kind of scary/sketch lol.
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  3. #3
    Registered User bstockton's Avatar
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    DAY 3 - 10/24

    Last night I didn't get home until 3:45 am, strike took much longer than anticipated. I didn't lift or overdo anything, but because it was the most I had been up and moving around I got pretty sore by 2 am or so. Not painful, but just sore. I crashed at 4am and got up at 12:15.
    I didn't take any pain meds at all today. Bruising around the belly button is still pretty much the same, but the lower two incisions are looking a lot better. Swelling is also down overall compared to day 1. Simple things like rolling over in bed no longer make my abs feel tight/sore like they did the first few days, and I can also get in and out of bed/chairs without thinking too much. I still haven't had any pain where the actual hernia was, which I was expecting at some point, but I guess that's a good thing.

    Diet is 50p 20f 45c x6 meals, and I'm drinking Xtend like its my job. 1-2 gallons a day

    Up until this point last night's strike has been the only major thing I've had to do, tomorrow I need to go back to classes so we'll see how that goes.
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    Registered User bstockton's Avatar
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    Day 4 - 10/25

    First day with jeans yesterday was a mistake. The lowest incision is right on my waistline, and my waist is still a bit swollen, so that got annoying really quickly. Luckily I only had to deal for about 4 hours before I could come home and change. Definitely finishing the week out in sweats. Still no pain meds.

    DAY 5 - 10/26

    The surgical glue on the bottom two incisions is starting to peel, but it's amazing how healed those two incisions already are. The line is very thin but obviously healed over, and the surrounding area is only slightly pink, though there's still a sort of bump underneath. They're about 1/2" long each. The bellybutton is the most bruised with the largest lump underneath, but you can't see the incision because the surgeon cut inside of it. It's also a "+" cut rather than just a line.

    Overall abdominal soreness is gone, but certain movements still give me a bit of pain in two areas: to the right of my bellybutton and to the right of the lowest incision. Coincidentally this is also where all of the bruising is. It's not a sharp pain, but it's definitely more than soreness.

    I can see overall stomach swelling going down because ab definition is (very slowly) coming back, as are some ab veins.
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  5. #5
    Registered User bclending's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bstockton View Post
    Day 4 - 10/25

    First day with jeans yesterday was a mistake. The lowest incision is right on my waistline, and my waist is still a bit swollen, so that got annoying really quickly. Luckily I only had to deal for about 4 hours before I could come home and change. Definitely finishing the week out in sweats. Still no pain meds.

    DAY 5 - 10/26

    The surgical glue on the bottom two incisions is starting to peel, but it's amazing how healed those two incisions already are. The line is very thin but obviously healed over, and the surrounding area is only slightly pink, though there's still a sort of bump underneath. They're about 1/2" long each. The bellybutton is the most bruised with the largest lump underneath, but you can't see the incision because the surgeon cut inside of it. It's also a "+" cut rather than just a line.

    Overall abdominal soreness is gone, but certain movements still give me a bit of pain in two areas: to the right of my bellybutton and to the right of the lowest incision. Coincidentally this is also where all of the bruising is. It's not a sharp pain, but it's definitely more than soreness.

    I can see overall stomach swelling going down because ab definition is (very slowly) coming back, as are some ab veins.

    I had hernia repair done in december 2009 i was back in the gym abut 4 weeks later and i had the open surgery witch i guess is a longer recovery. Good luck on the recovery you should be feeling alot better in about a week
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  6. #6
    Registered User bstockton's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    1 WEEK - 10/29 - GYM

    It's pretty amazing how far I've come in a week. I was feeling fantastic with no ab soreness so I decided to hit the gym. I did an upper push, (military press, laterals, incline db press, assisted dips, pushdowns, and close grip bench) and used ~70-90% of my normal weights. It felt amazing to get back at it, and made me even more motivated to be using those weights already. I've basically maintained my bf from before surgery as well, so apart from my abs I'm pretty good. Compare the attached picture to the original post. Bad lighting, but you get the idea.

    DAY 8 - 10/30/10

    Did some back today at the gym, rows, pulldowns, t-bar rows, and was feeling good at the end so did some light deadlifts, 185 3x10. It felt good, but I just wanted to get a feel for it, not push anything. I should note that both days I started off with 5 minutes of ab warmups on machines to loosen up. I think this will be critical as my workouts climb back to full intensity.
    I attribute my doing as well as I am to a few things. Maintaining my diet (I ate even though I wasn't always hungry at the beginning, your body needs to repair all the tissue that got messed up during surgery.). Getting enough sleep is obvious, and being active is good (taking walks and being up and about and not just lying/sitting around). I also think my mega dosing Xtend to the tune of 10-15 scoops per day helped. It helps recovery during/from workouts, why not damaged tissue from surgery?

    In other news, I spent the last 15 minutes picking already-peeling surgical glue out of my bellybutton. ****'s annoying. It's also isn't a + incision like I said before, the glue/swelling made it look that way. It's just vertical cut.
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    Registered User bstockton's Avatar
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    2 WEEKS - 11/5/10

    Well, I've pretty much disregarded my instructions to not lift more than 40 lbs for two weeks. Since the two "get back into it slowly" workouts I posted above I've hit delts/tris, back, and bis/calves followed by 10 minutes of HIIT, all with 90-100% intensity. I weighed in this morning at 186 lbs, and apart from a slight bump in my abs next to my bellybutton (which has steadily been getting smaller) am still in excellent condition. My recheck is this coming tuesday, so we'll see what the doc has to say.

    Speaking of surgeons, do research on your surgeon and check others in your area as well. I got lucky, my guy went to MIT, NYU, then Johns Hopkins, though I only checked out his background after the fact. But I did find others in my area who didn't appear be as good based on patient reviews. That's not to say that someone who didn't go to a big name school isn't good, or the opposite. After all you only get out of college what you put in. Go with your instinct. He's digging around in your gut, you want to trust him.
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    BStockton,

    I just had the same procedure two days ago. You seem to have recovered rather quickly. How did things go for you after the 2 week mark? Did you have any complications or did it just get continually better?
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    in my wallabees mass922's Avatar
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    had this same procedure, 1 week ago. just left gym after 400m swim & 20 pullups. laparoscopic is the way to go. hoping to add weights in workout again by end of this week. thanks for sharing, even though this is old, appreciated the log... i thought i may just be freak-healing... haha.
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I ain't even mad.
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    Laprascopic Double Inguinal Hernia Repair

    Wanted to give some background and update on hernia repair.

    About a year ago, I had been working out and eating great. Was down to 9% bf and then one day felt something pull. Though I pulled my groin at first but it didn't go away after about a week. I began working out again and after playing in a weekend softbakk tournament had some light swelling above penis and groin. When I laid down it went away. I went to doctor who confirmed hernia on right side. He scheduled me for consult with surgeon who also confirmed hernia and recommended surgery. My insurance at time wasn't great so I decided to wait until my new insurance kicked in. Scheduled surgery for March 27 at 7:30am.

    Surgery Day:

    Nurse put in an IV. Anthesiologist came in about 30 minutes before surgery and asked a bunch of redundant questions. I was wheeled in to surgical operating room at around 7:45am. Just before being rolled onto that room they gave me some feel good juice in my IV. Once in the op room they placed a mask on my face and I was out in a few seconds.

    Woke up in recovery room. Had a very bad cough, which didn't hurt bad at time because of anesthetic but surgeon quickly yelled at nurse to get me sone lidocaine or I would bust my sutures. Surgeon came over to talk to me and explained that he made three incisions and fixed hernias on both sides and that he placed mesh on both sides

    Went back to my original recovery room where wife and mom were waiting. I went pee after about 25 minutes and they gave me two hydrocodones. I felt a bit nautious so they gave me some fenergren. Sorry if I misspeled that. I left hospital after about an hour or so and was probably a 3-4 on 1-10 pain scale.

    Got hone and slept for 4 hours. Woke up that night and had some soup. Took no additional pain killers. Peeing hurt a bit and it was difficult to completely empty my bladder. Getting in and out of bed was brutal but managed it fine. Pain maintained at about a 3 or 4. I also had a light cough and had to continuously clear my throat. This sucked baddd. Pain was excruitiating.

    Day 2:
    Pain was not bad in morning. Peeing still a bit difficult. Testicles and shaft were black and blue and swollen. Ate light meals throughout day. Still in pretty good pain. Cough still sucked bad. Took a pain pill with colate stool softener at night. This pain pill made me feel better. It was the only one, other than Alieve, that I took. Went to sleep. Sleeping on back only still.

    Day 3:

    Woke up and took bandages off. Took shower. It went fine. Got ballsy and decided to take my dog to groomer. Horrible idea to try and drive. Turning wheel at this point isn't fun. I came home and slept. Still haven't had a bowel movement at this point so start loading up on prune juice and milk of magnesia. Walked up and down long driveway a few times. Felt good. I can stand straight up. Did some light stretches and body weight squats to keep my legs from getting too weak. These were fine. No painkillers today. Worst pain is from being bloated and constipated.

    Day 4:
    Woke up in AM and finally had bowel movement. It wasn't bad. Just let it come and don't push. Pain is about same as yesterday but I feel mote limber and can bend over to pick things up.

    Will post more updates later.
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