Okay, after a few scary moments and an emergency hospital admission, Joe has had the operation to widen the neck of his bladder. And guess what … he can now pee like a man should and has said goodbye to the catheter. Fingers crossed this is a permanent situation. Although he gets a bit fed up at times he doesn’t seem to mind the nephrostomy bag now he’s got used to it, and let’s face it those catheters did get in the way of normal life and movement.
I have to say that the UK’s National Health Service reacts to all emergencies in the most efficient manner. I was kept fully informed of developments by phone. For instance the emergency situation resulted in him being transferred from Good Hope Hospital to Heartlands Hospital (a ride of about 20 to 25 minutes on a good day) and then to be returned the next morning in time for the operation. That was to take place in the Day Care Centre, which closes at eight o’clock at night. Consequently they had to find him a bed on which to recover and if that didn’t transpire he would go back to Heartlands. Fortunately the Bed Manager did find a bed so I was able to go and see him at the hospital nearest to home. I had so many phone calls I was on Christian name terms with folk at both hospitals!
There was one little bit of humour that’s worth relating.
When one nurse couldn’t insert a catheter she called for an ‘expert’ to do the job. The ‘expert’ was a middle aged black nurse who had a sense of humour as well as being highly efficient. She introduced herself to Joe. Leaning in close she said ‘My name is Vilma, V-i-l-m-a. I tell you that because you and I are going to get very personal so you need to know who I am.’
Joe is home now and looking much happier and I know he joins me in thanking you all for your love and good wishes.