Well, yesterday morning at 11am I checked into City Hospital’s Women’s Health Centre and had my ablation. It was a positive experience, painful yes, but the staff were very helpful and respectful. A nurse sat down with me first to go over my medical record and my current medications, as well as the other pre-op forms that were filled out by a GP at my doctor’s clinic (my family doctor was on vacation and I needed the forms filled out before she got back). Then the nurse described what the procedure would be like and how it would feel, she said it would feel like period cramps, which was true. She told me what drugs they would give me (gravol and fentanyl and some local freezing). And then she sent me off to get my IV and blood pressure tested. Apparently I have lower oxygen than non-smokers, possibly because I smoked for 12 years even though it has been a year off them. Anyway, then I sat in a recliner and waited. I was supposed to go at 2:15, the third in line. But something happened with the first patient and I was suddenly scooted ahead to number 1. They had me walk to the room, then I had to lay on a short table with stirrups. It’s a little bit of an awkward position. My OB/GYN came in and did the check in to make sure we all knew what procedure was happening.
Then he left and the nurse gave me the gravol and then the fentanyl in my IV. The gravol didn’t feel like much but the fentanyl was bizarre. It made me feel kind of woozy/dizzy and dreamy. “This is weird” I said. Then the doctor came back in and they got to work.
I had a blanket over my lower half, so I didn’t see anything going in or out of me. A speculum went in first, I was used to those so it didn’t bother me that much. They gave me some freezing and then they dilated me. That felt a little worse, even with the tablets they prescribed me to put up my vagina that morning. Then he had to measure the inside of my uterus, and that really felt like yucky period cramps. The cramps kept moving around to the different parts he was measuring. And then he inserted the Novasure thing. I don’t know what it looks like, so I can’t describe it, it is supposed to be a mesh that expands to fit your uterus and then they use some kind of radio frequency or something that basically heats up and burns the endometrial lining of your uterus. Getting it in place felt crampy. And then like the nurse had said, there was a hum.
The hum lasted for 90 seconds. That doesn’t sound bad, but the FEELING of having it heated and burning your internal organs is NOT NICE! I pretty much made moany whimpery noises the whole time it was happening. It hurt. A lot. BUT not so much that I wanted to die. 90 seconds can be a long time though. And then finally, it was over.
A funny thing that happened is they left a radio station on during the procedure and Rick Astley’s Never Gonna Give You Up was playing during my ablation. I was all drugged on fentanyl and trying to explain Rickrolling to them. The nurse who had described the procedure earlier was with me in the room and she was super comforting. She would distract me during painful parts by asking me questions and making light conversation. I think her name was Brenda.
After it was over they helped me into a wheelchair and took me back to my bed (a recliner) and brought me some ginger ale and two cookies. They also called my mom to come and get me. I got dressed and then they took my blood pressure over and over until I seemed ok. I went home with Mom. I basically went to bed.
Afterwards was uncomfortable. I felt crampy, AND I was constipated, and I kept feeling like if I could shit the crampy part would go away but I couldn’t poop all day. At 7pm I took one of my super duper extra strength advil and I finally got a little bit of sleep. At 8 I woke up and went into the living room. I had some food, my appetite was back and felt good. I went back to bed around 10 and slept until 1am when I took another Advil, they had told me to take something every six hours. So then I took another one this morning at 7:31am and I felt back to normal today.
As for the lasting effects of the ablation, I won’t really know for a few months. My OB/GYN wants to see me in three months to talk about how it is going. Ideally, I would like to never have a period again. For years I have had to take iron every day because I bleed so much I am anemic. I bleed so much that a pad or tampon or even sometimes my diva cup can’t catch it all in the night so if I sleep over at someone’s house I am DESTINED to bleed on their bed. It’s been really awkward, and people have been pretty shaming about the bleeding so much thing, which sucks. Like I have literally gotten talking to’s about bleeding in people’s beds like I do it on purpose or something. I also don’t like the feelings of my periods, I get bad cramps. On the second day of my period I have to empty my divacup about five times in the day. It’s just ridiculous.
One thing is I won’t be able to be pregnant, which is fine. I don’t want kids. I had to tell my doctors over and over that I don’t want kids and they finally believed me. Which is good because some doctors try to preserve fertility even when their patient is adamant that they don’t care. I COULD get pregnant but it would be a horrible idea with complications and I would need to abort for my health. So no sperm in vagina for me! Which is fine by me!
I still might need to get a hysterectomy in the future if this doesn’t work, like my Mom and Auntie and my Grandma, BUT this is the new alternative to hysterectomies and a lot of women are really happy with the results. Especially with the Novasure. I’ve had a little bit of discharge, watery with a pink tinge to it. Not really super bloody. I can’t put anything in my vagina for six weeks, also no baths with salts or oils, no hot tubs, and no swimming pools. No tampons, pads only. I haven’t had much pain today. It’s been good. And yes, today I finally had a poop. Poops are good! It means things are working normally!