This will vary from person to person. Waking up from anesthetic can be a daunting experience.
Common experiences include:
Nausea - The anesthetic can make you nauseous, and it is not unusual to vomit when you awake. The nursing team will be used to this and will have sick bags/bowls available.
Trapped gas pain - During laparoscopic abdominal surgery, gas (commonly carbon dioxide) is used to ‘inflate’ the abdomen - giving the surgeon more room and a better view of your internal organs. Many report waking up with stomach and shoulder pain where the gas has moved post-op. Pain medication can help - as well as gentle movement where possible.
"I felt crazy bloated (with shoulder tip pain - a one on me!), I hated the feel of the catheter, but I was relieved it was over and excited about sleeping with no interruptions!" - Patient
Pain - Patients report varying levels of pain when waking up from surgery. For some it is very minimal, and others have greater pain. Your care team will be able to provide appropriate pain relief, so be sure to tell them about the pain you’re having and ask for additional help in managing the pain as needed. Some find that heat pads on their abdomen help so do request them where possible.
"I felt very 'full'. I had a lot of vaginal 'packing' so I felt like there was something stuck 'up my hole' and yes, sure enough, there was! I felt tired and a bit nauseated, along with period type pain as well" - Patient
"I felt very bloated and really crampy. I remember that I kept panicking as thought I was wetting myself in recovery - it was just that the catheter was unfamiliar" - Patient
Visit www.iapmd.org/surgery for lots of evidence-based information and resources for those considering, going through or recovering from surgery for PMDD/PME.
"My pain level was manageable with the pain meds they offered and was no worse than when I had my c-sections. I felt very sleepy and slept a lot in the first 48 hours post op" - Patient
To get group support to others at the same stage as you:
Visit www.iapmd.org/surgery for lots of evidence based information and resources for those considering, going through or recovering from surgery for PMDD/PME.