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Blow by blow description of my three days in TJ


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Arrived in SD and transported to TJ on the 9th before noon for preops. Was just banded 6/10- lost 10 before I got there. Surgery was easy. Stay in hospital overnight- you will get something IV for pain and GERD, and a sleeping pill. Two people who went to the hotel had to go back to the clinic in the middle of the night. Also would NOT recommend flying out the day they say. Better to stay in San Diego at hotel, or with friends if they live close, or at the TJ hotel. I have had fluid retention (face puffy), wicked abdominal bloating, no BMs, feeling very tired (all of this only after I was d/c'd from the hotel). I called Dr. Acosta (he stayed in the hospital overnight to care for people done on the 10th). He said I was not drinking enough or getting enough protein- so the water is not going to the cells but rather causing edema. It is really too early for protein shakes, but I happened to go on bariatriceating.com and ordered these clear liquid bullets (look like giant test tubes). They have 3 oz of protein drink worth 42 grams of protein. Watered it down 1/2 or more and feel MUCH Better since having one. Tastes like vitamin water or melted jello depending on how much you dilute it. Dr. Acosta said I should be drinking a gallon a day of water. Could not imagine getting on a plane on the 12th like I was supposed to. (my parents live in San Diego so I came to stay with them for a couple of days.

Anyway, everyone was great. Preop- had blood drawn, saw the cardiologist and talked medical hx with him, had an ECG and Spirometry (they check out lung capacity), and met with Dr. Mirando who had a powerpoint presentation and post op instructions. Next morning- put in a gorgeous hospital room (small but had a satin bedspread, loveseat, chair, little fountain, and soothing music.) Anesthesiologist, Dr. Ortiz, the other surgeorn, and Dr. Acosta (the overnight dr.) ALL came to my room preop and chit chatted with me for 10-20 minutes before they gave me instructions. Dr. Ortiz brought his coffe cup with him, sat down, and did pt teaching. IV was started, had a ativan (tranquilizer) under my tongue, and walked to the OR. (Usually they bring a wheelchair, but I wanted to talk.) Dr. all speak perfect english. Nurses do not but they are very efficient and understand you even if their english isn't exact. Place is immaculate, everyone wears shoe covers so the floors don't get dirty. I am a nurse practitioner and could'nt believe how superior it was to ANY hospital in the states I have been in. I do not know how an emergency is handled but the run of the mill stuff was great. This was an outpatient OR, it was not a general hospital. The floor is Dr. Ortiz' and the other floors are not necessarily medical i.e. hospital wards.

Overnight was watched by the dr. and nurses. Had popsicles and water that night and broth in the AM. Was encouraged to walk. IV stayed in till morning. Went to hotel at 830 or so, new patients were coming in. Took a taxi ($5) to Revolucion Ave where all the shopping is. Came back after a couple of hours. Went to the Restaurant. The waiter was banded 12 years ago (lost 45 lbs) by Dr. Ortiz, and knew exactly what we could eat and order depending on wether the people were there for fills or just banded. Walked to the grocery store late after noon and got more clears because the restaurant was expensive for broth (4.80 for a bowl.) Finally had some discomfort at bedtime and lots of abdominal bloating. Sorry for the long post but I like the blow by blow when I am at someone's mercy.

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Those protein bullets sound pretty interesting!

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You were great company, and I learned so much from you. Thank you for making my trip even nicer.

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