Friday, 29 November 2013

Five Weeks Later...

Well, this week will be short.  Nothing much to report other than it seems to slightly change in form.  It appears to be closing almost by the day.  This week it looked a little more red than usual, then seemed to settle again.

Anyways, here are the photos from this week taken 'before' cleaning.  I did this to show the 'crusting' around the scar that is taking place.  This is expected and part of the process.  They look closer than usual as I took these photos myself. 

I will continue with weekly updates until the wound closes, then reduce the frequency.

Until next time...

Friday, 22 November 2013

Sutures (Stiches) Get Removed

My sutures (stiches) finally came out a few hours ago - WOOOHOOO, YEEHAAA, WOOP WOOP!!! - OK, that's the emotional bit over with, now to a return to being a typically reserved Brit, a quick translation "What a jolly good thing those fine fellows did by removing mi sutures" - lol

Anyways, back to business - Here's what happened:

1) As advised by my GP, I went to the 'Wounds Clinic' (a specialist NHS [National Health Service] unit in the UK - I never knew it existed but apparently it's been around for 10 years)

2) I gave a detailed explanation of my previous AKN condition to the nurse, then referred to my blog to show progress and what to expect (which she found very useful), then I gave her the details from Dr. Umar

3) Sutures removed without any pain or discomfort and a basic dressing applied for my journey home

4) Washed hair thoroughly using baby shampoo (the mildest I could find), but was sure to keep everything away from the wound - This was the first wash since the operation for fear of upsetting the wound

5) Washed and dressed the wound using the usual Videne, guaze and pressure bandages process

6) Good night's sleep

Sutures Removed, Pictures 'BEFORE' Wound and Hair Cleaned:

There's is no denying that my hair looks 'natty' as we Brits say (or 'mappy' as the Americans say).  Whatever the term, this necessary process left my hair looking the most unpleasant it's been since being in the Cadets.  A small price to pay for the common good of the overall work, however I was very keen to wash where the sutures had been.

Sutures Removed, Pictures 'AFTER' Wound and Hair Cleaned And Videne Re-applied to the Wound and Where Sutures Were:

With the sutures removed and the scar rapidly closing, I can now begin to see just how I might look once the healing is complete.  So far, everything looks very good and I remain optimistic and committed to precisely following Dr. Umar's every instruction [even if I do ask some seemingly odd questions], especially the advice of maintaining a 'chin high' posture.

The Sutures Laid to Rest... 

Stay tune and will talk again soon...

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Four Weeks Later - 2 [Interim]

Miraculously, today the rash is gone and my skin is settling again! :-)

See above from where I cleaned the wound myself and took some update photos:

I guess all is well again now.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Four Weeks Later...

Feeling very pleased with myself as this week I succesfully cleaned and dressed the wound myself.  I waited until everybody was out, then just got on with it!  It was the first time I saw it in the mirror, up until now I only saw the pictures as my head is down whilst my wife / mother cleans the wound.  Surprised how much smaller it looks in the flesh.  It took me around 30mins to clean as I kept looking at the wound to make sure I hadn't damaged anything (and to admire my own handy work).  lol - Straight forward enough, although I managed to get Iodene all over my hands, down my back and on the brand new flooring that was laid just last week, other than that, PERFECT!!! :-) 

The itching is now almost (but not quite) unbarable.  For the last few days I was using a different brand of pressure bandage which seemed to breath less.  I think it may also have contributed to a slight rash that came up 2 days ago, just below my lower scar line on the left.  After thorough cleaning and change of bandage brand, it has dramatically reduced this evening and seems settled, so hopefully no issues.  Anyways, I informed Dr. Umar and will see what his view of it is.  One other point to note is that Dr. Umar advised I stop using the Bacitracin ointment last week.  My GP (General Practitioner - basically a UK term for your regular/generalist doctor) questioned the use of this drug for more than the first 7 days as it is an antibiotic.  She advised that after 7 days the effects would be null as my body's defences would become immune to it.  I put it to Dr. Umar and he mentioned that the Bacitracin was also important as a lubricant during the early stages to prevent the guaze sticking to the wound (well he is the expert).  I informed my GP, who then prescribed me the required repeat prescription (UK equivalent called - Polyfax Ointment 20g).  To my surprise, when I stopped using the Polyfax ointment, the Iodene soaked guaze does 'not' stick to the wound at all, very impressed!  Whilst I'm on the subject of UK equivalent drugs, we (in the UK) do not have Betadine, so my Pharmacist and my GP prescribed Viodene Antiseptic Solution - 10% w/w Cutaneous Solution - Iodinated Povidone).  Looks, feels and smells exactly the same as Betadine and seems to work a treat - Both are Iodene based and used for cleaning!

Dr. Umar's update from last week was that I am likely to have my sutures removed the follwoing week (e.g. this week).  Can't wait, I appreciate the good they have done, but I just want them gone as I feel I have to be extra cautious with them. 

So, below are this week's photos after 4x weeks, after being cleaned but prior to being dressed and msot likely the last set of pictures before the sutures are removed (hopefully tomorrow).  The sutures are quite embedded and some are barely visible:

This last picture shows the rash (although it's now hardly visible).  It was really itching so I was keen to be sure it's nothing serious, will report more on this next time:

Notice also the little bumps below the scar line, I think they are heat-related due to the different brand of pressure bandages that didn't seem to breath as well as the usual ones.  Whatever the cause, those bandages are long gone!  Will see what Dr. Umar says and how this progresses and report more next time.

Until next time...

Friday, 15 November 2013

Three Weeks Later...

So, it's itching like crazy but apparently that's a good thing?  The sutures seem to be embedded, but are still visible.  I can really see the scar closing.  Looks very different this week, very sealed and very settled.  I will not miss the head bandages though, it itches under there and gets a hot.

Anyways, enough words, time for this weeks pictures:

Bye for now, more next week.