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Day 9 – Axilla sentinal lymph node biopsy

May 2, 2013

So I had the biopsy. It had to be performed under general anaesthetic…and a lot of firsts for me: I’ve never had a stay in hospital before, never had general anasthetic . Basically I’ve never been in hospital for anything in my life other than a simple x-ray or blood test.

The experience was good though. The staff were fantastic, friendly, caring and that helps a lot.

First lots of health details were taken, and visit from the operating surgeon andanaethesist . Then it was a little time lying on the ward bed waiting to go in. First they took me into the anaesthesia room (it’s quite fun being wheeled around on a bed – though obviously without the surrounding causes). This was the bit I was so unsure about. I don’t like needles and assumed it would hurt or be uncomfortable, but the anaesthetic needle in the hand was fine! Whoopie! A fear dismissed.

My consultant also popped in to see me, just to say hello and see how I was – that was so nice. I am fortunate to be in good hands.

Next an oxygen mask was put on me and they said I might feel the anasthetic going in – that was weird. It was a cold sensation spreading up my arm , but it didn’t hurt in any way.

Next thing I knew my name was being called as I tried to rouse myself from a dizzy, foggy state. It was over. It’s interesting how you can’t remember the point at which you start  to drift under in anasthetic.

It took a good 45 mins to get to a state where I was fully awake, and then the nurses brought me back to the ward to rest, have a snack and a hot drink (I wasn’t allowed to eat from early in the morning). I wasn’t sure how I would feel after anasthetic, but I actually felt really good, and the wound was only slightly uncomfortable – no pain killers were needed.

I’m glad that’s over, but also glad for the experience as it gives me some idea of what to expect going in to the big operation. It’s awkard moving and sleeping, as every time I move the arm on the side of the wound it starts to hurt, so trying to keep above the elbow pretty still.

And today, I feel good in myself. I think part of this whole process is the unknown experience – we can fill our minds with fear and anxiety, but when it comes to actuality, reality, often things are not as bad as we dreamed up.


From → Days

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