Operations when diagnosed with Fibromyalgia 

I thought I’d share my personal story just in case any of my fellow fibro friends are going in to hospital for a procedure.

A bit of background

I was took into hospital at 11pm one night after having pain in my right side radiating down into my groin, feeling nauseous and having to urinate every 5-10 minutes.  They found a small cyst in my right ovary and sent me home with a big bag of pills after 6 nights and told me to see my doctor about a referral but explaining it would be highly unlikely the NHS would do anything as the cyst was under 5cms.  I won’t bore you with the stressed and somewhat abusive overworked nurses, let’s just put it down to a bad experience and I was glad to be home.

I am lucky that with my job I get private Healthcare and my spinal pain consultant had a word with his Gynaecologist friend and he got me in the same day I left the NHS hospital.  As he was on holiday the week after I was booked in for an exploratory laparoscopy the week after sand he promised to remove the cyst 👍

Pre Procedure  

As you can’t eat before you Operations, I ate at 7.25am and my operation was at 2.00pm, that’s a long time without food.  I have to eat every 2/3 hours or I get very ill; shaky, dizzy, lack concentration, flu like feeling, aching, bad headache.  By the time my operation came up the doctor agreed I looked terrible!  So be warned people the lack of good might make you feel somewhat ill pre op.

Post Procedure Tips

  • As I had CO2 gas inserted for the procedure it’s advisable to eat light or the pain is unbearable, 2 shots of morphine and oxygen attached to my face and meditating with my phone and headphones I felt much better.  So please if you have this procedure eat light and often to help expel the CO2.
  • General anaesthetic will give you constipation, don’t be afraid to use gentle laxatives, Laxido is fantastic, double up the sachets as I did.
  • Drink lots of water 3-4 litres to help flush out toxins and recover from the anaesthetic.
  • Ask for stronger pain medications as our friend Fibromyalgia is likely to make pain feel much worse than it needs to.  But be warned that if taken constantly for more than 3 days you may feel slight withdrawal symptoms as I did coming off morphine and fentanyl patches.
  • Get moving.  It’s important to get on your feet asap for most procedures.  If you nurse/doctor tells you this then do it. Start small then build up it really does aid recovery.
  • Use relaxation techniques such as self hypnosis, meditation and mindfulness to relax you and help you sleep.
  • I did not sleep at all overnight in hospital due to pain so nap when you get home but I wouldn’t recommend going this for more than a few days as it can affect you at night.
  • Research after effects from your procedure do you know what to expect; I did but not enough.  I suffered terrible hit and cold flashes, having to change clothes 3 times a day, shower twice a day and wash my bedding daily.  I also sank into a terrible depression and was very irritable and could not sleep for more than 2 hours over an 8 hour period.
  • If anything does not feel right or the after effects are severe speak to your doctor.  A 5 minute phone consultation will out your mind at rest and may need further medical assistance.
  • Prepare to take longer off work than the standard recovery time just in case
  • Get help at home in the first week
  • In the second week I’d recommend increasing activity and housework if you can otherwise what I found is that stiffness and pain from my fibromyalgia got worse, a lot worse.  I restarted some simple sitting yoga just to get me stretching and I walked twice a day and started to hoover 👍

So there you go I hope that gives you a little insight as to what to expect if you need an operation whilst battling Fibromyalgia.