Thursday, August 25, 2016
Some surgery with a difference
I rarely remark on my plastic surgeries to remove skin cancers. There are so many of them. But one I have just been through had me pretty anxious about it. It was in the aftermath of an excision that was unsuccessful. There was originally this tiny lump near my right nostril that I realized from long experience was probably a "bad 'un". The surgeon cut it out but the pathology report came back to say "incompletely excised". The report suggested that the tumor was aggressive and had spread both widely and deeply. So to get it all, a rather nasty hole in my face seemed needed.
I hate having my face sliced up and I hate anything affecting my nose so I was pretty tense as soon as I knew what was ahead. What was ahead was a Moh's procedure -- where the surgeon cuts out what he thinks is needed and then promptly puts the specimen under the microscope to see if the cut had got it all. If not, there is a second cut.
Mohs can be done as an in-office procedure at a suitably equipped surgery but this looked like being a pesky one so I arranged for it to be done in a private hospital. And last Tuesday was the day. I was first on the list at 1:30pm and did not get out until 7:30 pm. During that time I was on the operating table four times -- 3 to get all the bad bits and a 4th time to put my face back together. There was a hole in my lower face about the size of a 10c piece to be patched up. I don't know how the surgeon did it but he somehow did get it all covered up. He is quite brilliant. So my face will be back to normal as soon as the stitches come out.
The drama was not over, however. Next day I had a lot of facial swelling, which indicated that a bacterial infection had got into the wound. On some past occasions like that I have had to be admitted to hospital and be put onto a Vancomycin drip to deal with it. With the benefit of experience, however, I promptly put myself on a high dose of clindamycin -- two capsules every 6 hours. And it worked! By next morning the swelling had reduced.
So I have come out the end of all that completely fixed up without too much trauma and am once again feeling on top of the world!