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People weren’t joking, scalp reconstruction hurts!
I underwent a scalp reconstruction yesterday to close a Wide Local Excision on the left side of my scalp. It was (and is!) quite painful.
To put that in perspective I didn’t have any meds after my last two surgeries (the initial WLE and Lymph Node Biopsy, and nose surgery to fix a deviated septum), but damn I needed it this time.
It took the doctors close to 5 hours to get the pain under control, but I’m feeling much better now. Ketamine and clonadine did the trick.
The great news is that they did not need to perform a skin graft! They were able to rotate my scalp and close the wound with a couple of flaps. I’m absolutely amazed because it was a 7.5cm x 5.0cm incision that went down to the skull.
I have a head full of staples, and the scalp is obviously a little indented but should heal from the inside out.
I also have a small subcutaneous hematoma that needs to be monitored, so we’re (my wife and I) taking regular photos of it. They did not want to open me up again because of the risk to the scalp reconstruction, but if the hematoma increases I’ll have to go back in and have it addressed – possibly lose the scalp and have a graft from both legs. We don’t want that!
Here’s to healing, and thank you all for the wonderful messages last night and this morning when I was unable to sleep. You’re all such lovely, lovely people!
Ouch. Anything on the head is extra painful IMHo. I’m always so scared of becoming addicted that I switch to high does Tylenol and try and wean from there. At one point after my stroke (when I also had a giant crainiotomy and my jaw was dislocated from the anesthesia I actually slept clutching my secret bag of Tylenol.
I was taking Tramadol for nearly 4 years for an unrelated chronic pain issue. I weened myself off that over a 16 week period, so ever since then I’m cautious about pain meds. I’ve never had any cravings or urges or anything like that, I guess I’m lucky in that regard. But it’s good to be careful with these drugs.
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