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Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Cheerios hickman line

0203_hickman_0005tattoo_500wide Today I had my hickman line fitted. When I got to the hospital this morning Sarah asked me if I had eaten anything this morning as I was supposed to be nil by mouth because I was going to general anaesthetic, which was new to me, as I thought I was just going to have the local the same as last time! I told her I had some breakfast this morning at about 7am. When I told her that I had Cheerios, she laughed as it is a child’s breakfast and had great delight in letting everyone else know. I don’t care I like them :-) So with me having a breakfast I couldn’t have the general, which was fine by me. They were going to give me some Valium, but after I told them that I had my last line fitted with just the local they agreed it would be ok and probably better if I was fully compus mentus, although I’m not sure I’m ever that.

I had to wait to be told when I was going down as there was another person in front of me and then platelets were started. No sooner had I started on the platelets when the wheel chair arrived to take me down. Sarah came with and stayed throughout the procedure as she had never seen a Hickman line fitted before, even though she had been at the hospital for a number of years, so it was an ideal opportunity to see exactly what was involved and I didn’t mind at all.

I was expecting the local to hurt like hell as usual when first going in but it didn’t really hurt at all. In fact the whole procedure was the easiest and least painful that I had undergone. However as usual with me nothing ever goes perfectly and when he measure the line and inserted it, it was too long and actually went into my heart (so I was told by Sarah afterwards). So they had to pull it back slightly, they couldn’t take it out and start again, not sure why, but anyway the excess line had to go somewhere and he decided that he would put it into a loop and insert it under the skin and sew it up. You can see where about on the pic under the white plaster near my shoulder. I’m sure I will have some bruising come up soon. The only bit that I really felt was when he was stitching me up at the end which was only slightly painful as I think the local anaesthetic was wearing off.

It was flipping freezing in Surgery and I couldn’t wait to get back in the warm and stop shivering and go to the loo as I was bursting, I had to pee in a bottle as Sarah wanted me to stay in the bed, although I had to stand up to pee anyway so it didn’t really make any difference to me. I just hate using those bottles.

Sarah said to me afterwards that it was horrendous to watch and she didn’t realise how much was involved and she would recommend that all the nurses go and observe one to see what we have to go through. I was also told by Jayne another nurse later on that the actual nurse in the theatre told her that it was the worst one she had see as well. I would have loved to have seen a video of it afterward, shame they don’t do that, as I was covered by a blue sheet all of the time and couldn’t see a thing. At least I didn’t feel anything apart from the usual pushing and shoving.

Once I was back on the ward I just had to rest and have my obs taken every 30 mins or so to make sure I was ok. No problems though and I was able to go home at about 3:30pm.

Had a good laugh at the hospital and chatted to the guy in the next bed who happened to have myeloma as well. Although I’ve been going to the hospital most day, I actually quite enjoy getting out of the house and being around other people. It’s the only bit of interaction I get lately since not being at work, so I secretly look forward to it. I’d love to take my camera in and take some pictures, but I’m not sure they would allow it. I might ask at some point so I can post some pictures of the people I speak about.

I’m looking forward to my Cheerios tomorrow :-)


  1. Chris Sanderson2 March 2011 at 21:36

    All this time I have known you, but never known you have a tatoo.
    Jodie never mentioned it either.

  2. Not too sure about the idea of a 'loop' - you'd have thought they could have just left more of a dangly bit!

    Did that tattoo not take a lot of panting to get through? :D

  3. the loop is just to keep it out of the way, stuck up with a bit of clear tape. I take that off and it drops down when in use :)

    Not really, it only took about 5 mins ;)