Kidney Stones Hurt Worse Than Having Babies

I am happy to report that I am 2 weeks straight with no pain or pain meds!!!!!!

Memorial weekend was no fun for me. The night before Memorial Day…I started to not feel well. During the day, I was just fine. Around 4pm I started to complain to my hubby about my stomach being upset. When I got home I laid down for a little bit and around 6pm it was instant pain. I walked from the living room to the bathroom and all of a sudden I couldnt breathe. The pain was unbearable. I crawled my way out of the bathroom and into the living room where my hubby was and whispered in my breathless tearful voice…. “Babe….” He looked over and jumped up and said, “We’re going to the hospital right now! Can you stand?” I shake my head NO. He helped me up and we headed to the ER. We got there and I got doped up with a lot of morphine and Zofran. 3 hours later….we find out I have a kidney stone. And its only 4mm. Not so bad. The ER doc says “Surgeries are only done on 6mm and bigger. And since yours is only 4mm….we are going to send you home with pain pills and anti-nausea meds. And you just take them until it passes. Could be 1-2 days.” Perfect. So we head home.

We get home and I decide to make an appearance at the neighbors house. They were having a party and I wanted show my love. Especially because I was still high on all the morphine they gave me. I go over there… I say my hellos and then I go home. I felt like I needed to lay down….I still felt ok and a little loopy from the meds they gave me at the hospital… so I decided to just lay down without taking any pills. Well….that was a mistake!

About an hour later I woke up to go pee and all of a sudden the sharp pain is back. I feel like Im dying of pain. Im nauseous and dry heaving so I decide to take the meds they gave me at the hospital. I take one Zofran and one Percocet and then I laid down on the bathroom floor. I thought if I laid on the cold tile – hopefully it will help the pain subside or at least take my mind off of it because I am now freezing my ass off. But that doesn’t work either. About 2 hours after I take the meds….my hubby wakes up and finds me curled up on the couch, crying in pain. And once again….we pack the kids in the car and go to the hospital. I felt bad for my babies since it was 4am and they were being woken up and dragged to a hospital, but I also didn’t want to wake my mother in law at that ungodly hour.

So we get to the hospital and they take me right back. The doctor walks in and says …since the pain is that severe and the meds at home didn’t help at all, the stone must be stuck and he is scheduling me for surgery. They finally roll me back to the nurses section of the ER and they FINALLY they give me an IV. (I say FINALLY because it felt like an hour had passed but I think it was about 20 minutes from entering the ER to getting the IV drugs. But with that kind of pain….it felt like time stopped. I felt like I was dying from pain. I was literally about to pass out.) The nurse then begins to give me pain med. He gives me morphine. Then walks away and says…lets see how that works. 15 minutes later he comes back and I am curled up in pain again. So he gives me morphine again. And again…. walks away and says…lets see how that works. Another 20 minutes passes and he comes back and I am curled up in pain AGAIN. So once again….he gives me morphine. So this is 3 sets of morphine within the span of 45 minutes to an hour. And this time instead of walking away he sits by my bed and waits to see what happens. He sits there and watches me get loopy and then all of a sudden the pain comes back. He looks like he isn’t quite sure what to do. He says he will be right back. Then I see him walking from one room to the other and I am laying there in pain. And in my mind I am yelling…..GIVE ME DRUGS TO KNOCK ME OUT!!!!! But all that is actually coming out is cries and moans of pain. Finally (after what seemed like forever – but was probably only 15-20 minutes)…he comes back and says that maybe we need to change the drug. Maybe the morphine isn’t working for me. So he proceeds to give me Dilauded. Well apparently the Dilauded worked. My eyes went to slits and I was talking and laughing with my hubby. (It was nice to see my hubby smiling and laughing. He had such a worried look on his face the whole time. He looked like he wanted to punch the nurses for not making my pain go away. My hubby was a great support through all of this. But my true love for that man is another story for another time.) Finally the nurse comes back and notices that my blood pressure and oxygen is getting really low. He tells me to take a big breath – so I do and my numbers go up. He sits with me and begins reminding me to breath. And he tells my hubby that with all the meds he gave me – it would normally knock a football player out – but I am still talking. That is how much pain I was in. Then he says that because of all the meds – my brain and body may forget to breathe – so he has to keep reminding me to do so.

Finally the transport person comes to take me to surgery….and my nurse tells him to remind me to breathe every 30 seconds. We roll around the hospital and finally get to the ER and everyone there was full of smiles and jokes. And to our surprise…the nurses and doctors don’t tell us much. They tell us that they have to go in and remove the stone and we should be in an out in 1 hour. That’s it! And for me it wasn’t enough. Well….let me rephrase that….for the drugged up me – it was just fine. But for the now sober one – it wasn’t enough info. I am a research geek – I like details. And I got none. I think if they would have told me more – I could have avoided what was about to come.

So…..Surgery is done and they wake me up and take me to my room.

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I was told that I have to stay in the hospital until I stop peeing blood. Im laying there thinking about my baby and I then realize that I haven’t pumped my boobs all night. I tell my hubby that he has to go home and get my breast pump. He brings it back and I pump out 3 oz per boob and go to sleep. This pattern is basically my life for about 24 hours. Sleep…pump…sleep…pump…say hi to my family as they visit for an hour….sleep…pump… sleep…pump…and finally eat. My pee is finally starting to fade to a dark pink rather than a dark red. I haven’t been on any pain meds since the surgery. Im walking around. So they decide to send me home. The doctor that is making rounds on my floor comes by and again doesn’t say much. He tells me they put in a stent in to help me pass the stone that they just broke up. He tells me I need to take the meds that I will be given. And to take it easy. The stent will be removed in 1-2 weeks. I asked the doctor about what meds I can and cant take since I am breastfeeding and he researched “a little” and came back to tell me that the only antibiotic that I can take is a sister drug to penicillin. (keep in mind – I am allergic to penicillin). He says “either take your chances with the sister-drug to penicillin OR don’t breastfeed. Well…I choose breastfeeding. So I say ok the meds and they send us home.

I start taking my antibiotics, UTI prevention med, and pain meds….and again…pumping and resting. Well the drugs they gave me say to take 3x a day. And by the 2nd pill I start feeling funny. And not in a haha way. I am peeing dark pink. I keep having pain attacks and I have a migraine that wont go away. I figure its just my bodies way of telling me it been through hell and back and is trying to fix itself. So I go about my day. Finally pill # 3 comes . I take it and about an hour later…I feel like I am going to die! My migraine is worse. My chest is tight. My muscles are so tight I cant move. My neck muscles are pulling so much that my shoulders are lifting. It was getting hard to breathe. And around this time it is about 9pm. And all I could think was – OH SHIT – allergic reaction to the sister-drug to penicillin. And then y brain goes to my babies. I don’t want to drag them to the hospital again. (I should have!) But I didn’t. Instead I laid on the floor and tried to meditate. I was able to focus the pain away for about 5 minutes at a time. Pain would be gone…then it would come back. I would try to focus on other things but it didn’t work for long periods of time. Finally 4 am comes around and I am able to fall asleep. I wake up around 9 am and I still feel the migraine and the neck pain. The chest pain and breathing is finally back to normal. So I figure that its working. Waiting it out until the drug is out of my system is working. So since its morning and I am feeling a little better (well….I don’t feel like I am dying…just hurt…) I try to pump my breasts. I have to pump still because I am on the pain meds) and low and behold …. I HAVE NO MILK!!!!   WTF!!!   I went from having 3 oz per boob to ½ ounce per boob. So not only did I feel like I was going to die…but now I have no breastmilk! Now I am angry! I call the surgeons office to tell them what is going on. I get a machine and I leave an urgent message. 4 hour pass and still no call back….so I call again and leave another message. Finally 4pm comes around and I get a call back. I tell the triage nurse what is going on and she says she will talk to the doctor and call me back. 5 pm comes and she calls to tell me3 to stop taking the meds (well no shit Sherlock – I stopped taking them at 9pm last night!) Then she says the doctor wants to take the stent out early…so we made an appt for the next day.

I get to the doctors office and they take me back. The nurse puts a little lidocaine on my who-ha and we joke about the pain being worse than having kids and she leaves. 10 minutes later the doctor comes in – puts the camera in my urethra and yanks out the stent. And by yank – I mean yank. Not a pull, not a tug…a yank. I just about jumped out of the seat. He gives the scope to the nurse and says, “ok see you in 4 weeks.” And walks out. The nurse then says, “I will give you about 10 minutes to compose yourself and I will be back”……then she leaves. She finally comes back and gives me some papers and tells me to do the blood test and pee test in 2 weeks and they will see me in 4 weeks.

I walk out of the office feeling pained from having my insides pulled out and also feeling a little uninformed. I get home and I start feeling a little better. I go grocery shopping and about an hour into it I start feeling the pain a little. It kinda feels like Im passing a stone again. So I thought…ok maybe the broken up stone didn’t fully pass and now it is. I hurry to try and check out so that I can get home before the real pain starts. I get most of the way home and I realize that I have to pick up the boy from school. So I stop by the school and picked him up. We get home and I give him the iPad hoping that I can just take my pain meds and lay on the couch until they kick in. Well…..that didn’t work. It was now 3pm and I feel worse than when I had the first kidney stone incident in the ER. So I texted my hubby asking him when he will be home and I tell him I am not feeling so well. He calls me and I answer crying. He hears the tears in my voice and says he is coming home right now to take me to the hospital. So once again…..I am headed to the ER.

So after having my stent out for 4 hours…I am back in the ER. This time instead of taking me straight to the nurse with the IV meds…they take me to CT. I finally get to the ER nurse with the meds and they dope me up with morphine and this time it worked. I finally stop crying and the doctor comes over and says, “Everything looks normal. You have another 2 mm stone in your kidney but that is not moving yet. And that one should be easier to pass. As for the pain you are feeling – its from the inflammation from them taking out the stent. It will feel just like passing a stone. But this should all get better soon. Probably 1-2 more days.” Well great! It would have been nice for them to tell me that! It could have saved me a trip to the ER. I would have instantly doped myself up at home after getting it out.

So I go home and I am again doped up. The pain is so bad that started taking one percocet every 6 hours like the instructions said…and it eventually became one every 5 hours and then 2 pills every 6 hours. The pain seemed to be getting worse. This isn’t making sense. And since it’s the weekend – I cant see the doctor about it. I just have to wait it out.

Finally Monday comes around and I make an appt with the doctor. I arrive with the family at the office and for some reason – NOW – the doctor decides to give me information about what it going on. He says, “Well you had a 4 mm stone that was stuck. It was stuck long enough to have your urine be backed up into the top ½ of your ureter and kidney. I went in and broke it up. I put in the stent to help give your ureter and kidney time to heal from all the inflammation that was there. We took the stent out early not giving it time to heal properly. Usually that healing process takes about 3 days but mine has been going on for over a week. Its probably taking longer because you had so much inflammation previous to the surgery. If you have pain for a couple more weeks then you will have to get an IVP to make sure something isn’t wrong. And we will probably have to put the stent back in.” 2 MORE WEEKS! WHAT! There is no way I can deal with this pain and all of these pain meds for 2 more weeks. But what can I do.

Luckily the next day the pain started to subside. I didn’t feel as bad. I was down to 2 pills a day (rather than 2 pills every 6 hours). And eventually…..about 2 days later…..I was pain free. No more pain. No more pain meds. Yay!!!!!

And after doing a lot of research I found that if I pumped my breasts more often I could try and teach my breast to create milk again. And it worked. About a week later – I was back to making milk and I was able to feed my baby. The weird part is that I think she got used to the bottle because a least once a day she will want the bottle instead of the boob. I don’t mind because it gives me a little break.

I am, however, happy that I can still produce milk and I didn’t have to stop altogether. And I am especially happy to be out of pain.

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4 comments on “Kidney Stones Hurt Worse Than Having Babies

  1. Wow!!! What an eventful time for you! I’m so sorry you had to go through all of that…sounds like a complete nightmare! Glad you are on the way to recovery! Here’s to hoping you never have to go through that again!

  2. April, what am experience. I’m sorry you had to deal with that, and deal with what strikes me as poor bedside manner from your doctor. Here’s to hoping you continue to feel better with no more pain!

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