I had my preoperative physical yesterday afternoon. A nurse, a PA, and another nurse asked me questions about my medical history, took my vitals, poked my abdomen, and faxed FMLA paperwork to the surgeon for me. So I spent an hour and a half at their office mostly answering questions I’d already answered on the pre-appointment questionnaire. It doesn’t make much sense to me to pay all those people to see me just to ask background questions and get some vitals, but I suppose there are people with more complicated medical histories than me who might need a face-to-face visit to make sure everything relevant is covered. They were pleasantly surprised that I had nothing to tell them regarding previous surgeries (this is my first one!). And everyone in the office complimented me on my awesome snow boots, and I happen to really love those boots (they’re so warm and comfy, and they’re waterproof!), so it was a pleasant visit overall.
The only issue that came up shouldn’t have any bearing on whether or not the surgery will go well, and that issue is that my blood pressure was kind of high. 148/81 is the highest non-labor reading I’ve had. The nurse suggested I check it myself over the next few days and, if it stays elevated, to talk to my regular doctor about management. So that brings up another health issue that I’ve been trying to push off as far into the future as I can, and that has to do with my family history of high blood pressure and other heart related ailments. It’s disappointing to have a higher reading, especially since I’ve been exercising regularly and getting pretty good nutrition. I’ll have to be more conscious of nutrition relating to blood pressure I suppose.
Also disappointing is that there is a long list of nutritional and herbal supplements I’m supposed to stop taking 7 days before surgery, and at least 3 of those are listed on my bag of Vegan Chocolate Shakeology. 😦 The nurse said a simple protein drink would be fine, but with all the extra stuff in Shakeology, it’s probably best to stop drinking it for a week beforehand. I so love being able to drink at least one meal everyday (I’m super lazy when it comes to food), and now I’m going to have to come up with something else dairy-free to drink for breakfast for that week.
They didn’t do any lab work on me, and I kind of wish they had because I love data and I’m curious to see where my TSH, T3, and T4 are at now. TSH is the hormone released by the pituitary to stimulate the thyroid, and T3 and T4 are produced by the thyroid. Low T3 and T4 levels lead to hypothyroid symptoms like weight gain, lack of energy, and depression. I definitely feel like my T3 and T4 are a bit low for me, I mean, I’ve been doing these Core De Force workouts for 42 days now, and I’ve been eating mostly right (except for an extra couple of cookies here and there because, well, it’s baking season, isn’t it?), but I haven’t lost a single pound and I’m more tired than I think I should be. I’m convinced it’s the Hashimoto’s causing me to not lose weight and have low energy, and I’ll be attacking that issue once that baseball-sized nodule is gone from my neck. I thought about writing about Hashimoto’s and the problems of treating it like a thyroid disease when it’s actually an autoimmune disease that causes thyroid dysfunction (it’s not actually a thyroid disorder in and of itself), but there’s already great information here about Hashimoto’s and the prevalence of symptoms despite “normal” lab test results (mine have been “normal” every time they’ve been checked) in an article by Dana Trentini, author and founder of the fantastic blog Hypothyroid Mom (this really is a great source of information on all things thyroid related, you should check it out!).
At the end of my appointment, they gave me a folder with instructions on finding out what time I’m supposed to report the day of surgery, what to expect the day of surgery, and what to expect after. I’ll have more specific discharge instructions once the surgery actually happens, but for now, I should expect to go home around 11am the next day and just rest for the first 48 hours. Regular activities should be fine within roughly 10 days. I guess that means I can’t workout until the 15th or so (boo!), but I’ll have plenty of time to check into my Challenge Groups and offer support while everyone else is getting started on their New Year’s resolutions. (My Get Fit, Get Happy in 2017 group starts Jan. 9, btw.) I’ll certainly be right there with you dialing in my nutrition (which is really what needs to be done to lose weight anyway, right?), and then I’ll jump into the workouts with you as soon as the docs give the “okay”.
I think that’s all I’ll have to say about my bulbous thyroid until the surgery actually happens, but please feel free to comment or send me a message if you have any questions or comments. Thanks for reading!