Tenckhoff Catheter – After Op
This is one post I really wanted to do because just before I had my tenckhoff catheter op, I was searching the net to find out about them and all I could find was YouTube videos on how to put them in (as I wasn’t putting it in myself, that wasn’t helpful) and what they were.
I not going to repeat readily available information with you about what the tenckhoff catheter is but I wanted to share my experience of after the op.
First no one explained about the wind, well that is not strictly true – what I mean is the wind pain was downplayed. When I woke up, my shoulders were very painful (obviously my tummy was uncomfortable too but that’s to be expected). But my shoulders were painful from trapped wind – do not underestimate how painful it can be – it was like a constant dull ache that I couldn’t shift.
It did take several days to get rid of the shoulder pain and I used Extra Strong Mints (yes, the sweets) and rolling around on my bed – these both got rid of the wind (farted! – hey? We’ve been through pooing together, I think we can handle farting).
The “rolling around” was as follows.
Lay on your bed or any flat surface (make sure your comfortable) and lay on your left hand side as bring your knees up as close to your chest as you can (but don’t hurt your tummy – if there is any pain in your tummy STOP!!) – stay there for about a minute. Then put your legs straight and roll onto your back. Leave your legs straight and stay there for about 30 seconds. Then roll onto your right side and pull your knees up as close as you can to your chest and stay there for about a minute. After that minute, straight your legs and roll back onto your left side and repeat as required. There should be “movement” by at least the third go.
Vick Rub is also very good and helping with the pain from the wind. Rub it on the shoulder that is painful.
These did confuse me and it might have been me not listening or being incorrectly told – but I was under the impression that I would get three flushes of my tube; one a week.
This wasn’t so, the first flush was a week after the op and the nurse comes round to take a lot of the bandages offs (which is such a nice relief) and to flush your line.
I’m not going to lie, it does feel weird but it wasn’t painful at all. The redness in the liquid above is normal (or so I was told by the nurse).
My second flush was actually a few weeks after the first – again there was no pain and everything worked as it should.
My third flush was when my extension was added. The extension is the part with the blue connector on it – up until then you have a silver clamp on the end of your tube. The blue connector is what connects you to the bags/machine.
It was a good six to seven weeks between the first and third flush.
When you wake up you (obviously) have a lot of bandages all around your tummy. But under my bandages I was itching like hell – I thought it was just the CKD but when they came off (1 week after the op) there was a little plastic clamp digging into me causing me to itch – keep an eye out for that!
When all the first lot of dressing comes off, it is not all replaced and the dialysis nurse just cleans and covers your exit site and your tube – the tube is completely covered at the moment as you are not using it.
Each time the nurse came back to do a flush, the dressing got less and less until I was left with just two bits of dressing.
Remember that you can not have a shower or bath for 3 weeks after the op.
By the second change of dressing they should be teaching you how to care for your exit site and change the dressing yourself.
I believe that waterproof dressings are available but I have never seen or used them.