Retro Post: Part 2>Goodbye Summer, Hello BURN CENTER
So Monday finally comes. I've MapQuested my trek to the Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Wellstar Hospital in Austell, GA. Austell is NOT close to home, just for the record. But anyways, I head up here bright and early, with the assumption that I'll beable to go to work afterwards-I wasn't. I get there, check in and get directed to the Burn Center-I just want to say that the service I got at this hospital was the best I have ever seen. EVER. There were people to tell you everywhere to go, everyone was helpful and nice. It was the most pleasant hospital visit known to man. Seriously.
So I go in, thinking...is this going to be a 3rd degree burn? Am I going to need skin grafting? WTF are they going to do?? My nurse comes in for my assessment, takes a picture of my stomach ( I won't publish the picture unless there's a demand to see it...so if you want to see it, @ me on Twitter or leave a message here..whatever floats your boat). She then asks me if it hurts. I say no, its just uncomfortable. I see her face kind of flinch like 'oh no', but she doesn't say anything. Then the doctor comes in, takes one look at it and says its a 2nd degree burn...tells me what they will be doing to remove the layer of dead skin that is on there, and leaves to tend to the next patient. The nurse then proceeds to tell me that when I said it didn't hurt, her stomach 'dropped' because typically 3rd degree burns are the ones that don't hurt because your skin is that messed up. (she used more technical terms but I'll keep it simple)...and then asks me if I drove myself to the center today. Umm...yes...yes I did. Well that question was asked because they typically give you something for pain before the 'dead skin removal' process, which literally consists of the doctor SCRUBBING the layer of dead skin off and leaving the area pretty much raw. So since I drove myself...I couldn't get the meds. Great. Awesome. ...so I ask if I can take Motrin -I am always prepared. She tells me I can and recommends I take 3-4 of them. I'm thinking ...shit, this is going to hurt. So I pop 3 hoping it will do something for me.
Next they placed a layer of cream on the burn area, and left it there for around 20 minutes. I chat with the nurse (she is my favorite person in the hospital btw) and read a magazine...then the doctor comes in. They lay me down, put gauze all around the the area to be 'scrubbed', and go at it. She's literally scrubbing the dead skin off. IT HURTS LIKE HELL. I seriously thought I was going to pass out. It was terrible. But it only lasted about 4-5 minutes, which naturally felt like hours. She finishes, and they put this horrid dressing on the raw skin. A silver-infused overlay that looked like a mouse pad was put on my stomach, and it was secured to my body with an exceptional amount of tape. This dressing made me legitimately feel like I had a fat suit on for an entire week. Picking out clothes was super fun. SMH.
My fat suit week ends and I head back out to the Burn Center for my follow up. This time I was prepared and popped 3 Motrin before I even went, because I knew all that tape getting ripped off was going to hurt something serious if I didn't. I wait for about 45 minutes to an hour, all the while looking at all the other people in there for follow up visits. There was a 5 year old with a leg cast...a 3 year old with a hand cast.a guy clearly high on something with a completely messed up hand-because he had just taken his medicine and then tried to cook something. Yea, ok.
I get in, my dressing is ripped off-it didn't hurt at all, my Motrin did me justice. The nurse and doc look at it and are impressed with the healing that has happened. I was a little impressed myself. The rawness was gone, there were no blisters, there was a little bit of scabbing but it wasn't attached to the rest of the skin-it could just be exfoliated right off. What took the longest to get off was the tape residue/glue. And now I just wait. I wait for my color to slowly come back. I must apply lotion and massage the area at least 5 times a day...and I absolutely MUST put sunscreen on the area even if I have a full shirt on to protect the area. Oh...and I definitely have to invest in a cut-out bathing suit for my trip to Puerto Rico this December.
That'll do it for this go round...Stay tuned for the next set of noms for your eyeballs: Fall eats, drinks & ROMANCE (holy shit!)