A Tale of Tubes and Tears

The last few days have not been great, though due to the magic of blogging you won’t know that. When you’ve been reading about the trip to Wales I’ve actually been in hospital in Nottingham. On balance, despite the unpleasantness of a stay in male urology, I prefer Nottingham. There were no Kites, and no bilingual road signs, but the food was better and there was no problem with finding a toilet when you wanted one.

However, as a consequence of the operation and the bad night that followed I’m feeling subdued and tired, so I’m taking the easy way out and talking of hospital rather than Wales.

I quite enjoyed the first part of the visit, though I really don’t like spinal anaesthetics – being stabbed in the backbone isn’t my favourite procedure and I’m not fond of anything that involves putting my feet in stirrups whilst men with beards mess around with urological equipment.

The operation was OK, and being awake allowed me to watch what was happening and talk to people. The recovery room was also quite fun, and the nurses on the ward were very cheery. I even arrived on the ward in time for lunch (fish and chips followed by apple pie and custard).

They even, to look on the bright side, fitted me up with a personal toilet system. It has taken care of the problems I had with passing water, and it means that I can no longer be caught short as I have all I need strapped to my leg.

I was horrified at first when they told me I was going to have a catheter for 6 weeks, partly because it’s the sort of thing that only happens to old men, and partly because I was hoping to have everything fixed up in one go. It seems they want me back in six weeks to tidy things up and remove some stones from my bladder. Typical NHS, you go in for help with one problem and come out with another.

Tea (served at 5pm) was tomato soup followed by Β leek, chicken and ham casserole with mixed veg. I had the tinned fruit for dessert to try and increase my intake of fruit and veg. You don’t really get enough fruit and veg in hospital, which is strange (a) because it’s healthy and (b) because nurses are obsessed with asking about bowels.

The food was excellent, far better than when I was in 12 years ago. It was hot for one thing, which wasn’t always the case last time.

I could do a post on hospital food, and may well do that later. I won’t, however, dwell too much on catheters. I can be quite amusing on the subject, but it’s really more suited to the rugby club crowd rather than the sophisticated readership of WordPress.

No pictures today – there wasn’t much that was suitable to photograph.

29 thoughts on “A Tale of Tubes and Tears

  1. Pingback: Pepys, Posterity and Parmesan | quercuscommunity

  2. beatingthebounds

    “The sophisticated readership of WordPress”, thank you sir!
    I can also recommend ‘Nature Cure’. But not hospital food.

  3. Helen

    I’m glad your operation is out of the way.

    As for the bladder stones, you might try sodium bicarbonate diluted in water to drink. It worked on my ex-husband’s kidney stones. On the other hand, it won’t be as tasty as the hospital food you’ve just been eating, and they are going to be dealt with by other means in the near future.

    1. quercuscommunity

      Every little helps. I suspected I had symptoms of stones but got rid of them with citric juices. Was surprised to find I had others. As for bicarb – it can’t be as bad as lemon juice! πŸ˜‰

  4. The Snail of Happiness

    Glad you are home now.
    Catheters can be an absolute boon (I won’t go into details of how I know, suffice to say that my late father’s spinal injury gave ne a really in-depth perspective on the whole business) and yours should mean that you don’t have to suffer the excruciating pain of passing a stone. Fingers crossed that you’ll be all sorted out in six weeks time and that the food is as good for your second visit.
    Next time you come to Wales, visit Ceredigion, where I can give you detailed advice on good places to stay, eat, watch birds and find toilets!!

    1. quercuscommunity

      Yes, they have proved useful for me in the past, but only for days at a time and only whilst in hospital.

      Living with one for six weeks is proving a little more difficult.

      However, this is my third stay in male urology and having seen many people with stones I agree with you about that.

      I will definitely get in touch before we return – this was a bit of a rushed trip. πŸ™‚

  5. clarepooley33

    Have you read Richard Mabey’s “Nature Cure”? He describes an uncomfortable stay in a male urology ward which you will sympathise with. The book is excellent in many other ways.

    1. quercuscommunity

      I just broke one of my personal rules and bought the Kindle version of the book for Β£5.99. I can see myself having the time and the need to read it. πŸ™‚

      1. Life_As_I_Interpret

        that is so great! the hospital food is so famous in being, how do we say it, untasty, yet I always thought tomato soup could be an exception to it. I am glad it was delicious and you are doing better. all the best πŸ™‚

      2. quercuscommunity

        They have made vast strides since I was last there (12 years ago) and it’s a different world to my first stay in hospital 30 years ago (square boil in the bag scrambled egg!)

      3. Life_As_I_Interpret

        boy! i had a surgery 8-9 years ago and the food I remember; the green beans; the rice; the chicken; the rice pudding. no taste, no nothing… it was horrible but I am glad that things are changing, hopefully here in Canadian hospitals too! in-patients of all nations – unite against the hospital food!! :))))

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