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frmertd

Brand new to the SAH

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TJR, Im getting on very well. Thank you for asking. I have worked twice (12 hour shift instead of my usual 24). I had no problems other than stamina. Only killed 3 patients but they were old. (just kidding, i didnt do that). I fortunately had no cognitive problems so far, but stamina was a problem. As a doctor, stamina problems will make the nurses grumble but wont get you fired. ("sacked" you say in England). But cognitive problems will end your career.And you and the spouse??? How are you getting along.

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Hi

I am brand new to this site and not quite 3 weeks after my SAH for which no cause was found. Day 6 now at home after 12 days in hospital. As a Surgeon it was an eye opening experience being a patient and i think will make me a better doctor as a consequence.

 

I must say i feel very lucky not to have any complications aside from terrible pains in my buttocks and legs (now on Gabapentin) although my headaches have resolved.

 

My questions are;

 

1. Has anyone else had the leg/buttock pain which i am told is due to the blood in my CSF,and how long did it last for?

 

2. I simply cannot sleep at night no matter what i do. Any tips?

 

3. Does anyone have any experience of being on Gabapentin and its side effects?

 

Thanks and a speedy recovery to all

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi Alex and welcome to BTG. 

 

If you feel ready or willing to share your own SAH experience, please don`t hesitate t do so on our `Introduce Yourself Forum

 

You asked three questions. The first I think we can all share varying degrees of this sensation and it really is a very unpleasant feeling at times stabbing, bruising, aching with added sensations of prickling . The only thing that helped that pass was applying a heated  Wheat bag at the base of my spine, sleeping more propped up right and just the passage of time. 

 

Sleeping i found  setting a very good wind down routine helped for me . Stay away from devices and TV before bedtime, bath, listen to music that relaxes but I found when I couldnt  sleep sometimes it is best to accept that and then just let sleep comes when it comes.  I think the brain struggles to switch off And  the bleed disrupted our usual triggers , give yourself time, if you can’t sleep then just relax instead. 

 

None of us can give advice on the medicines but i did have gapabentin but hard to distinguish side effects along with the other meds and bleed impact plus I had some other stuff to contend with. 

 

You will see on the site Repeated advice from all of us who share an experience to rest well, adapt your pace and drink plenty of water. Do not expect slip back in to as you were before, there is healing to be done. 

 

as a surgeon you appreciate the marvel of what the body can do to heal but  of course your brain dictates the body functions and so now your brain needs some gentle space to allow it as an organ the best space to heal. Don’t ask too much cognitively in the early days and I think you will pay good dividend. And you are right following your insight you will be a better doctor that much I do know. 

 

Go steady , be kind to yourself. 

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Re Gabapentin, I took it for a different problem and had my mouth going really sore and my tongue splitting and bleeding. I do believe these side effects are listed on the information leaflet in the packaging.

Not everybody will get a reaction to them as I am sure you will know.

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Alexander....I had terrible pain in my lower back and buttocks probably about 2 weeks after my SAH...they told me it was from the blood in my spinal fluid...The pains as uncomfortable as they were did not last long, perhaps 4 days...they did put me on gabapentin for the pain ...it seemed fine initially but as I continued to recover and realize what was the after affects from the SAH and what was from the gabapentin I was anxious to stop taking it...I guess it served its purpose but I felt out of body while taking it...best wishes and I hope you are able to sleep soon...that is something I had no problem with...

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I also had excruciating pain in my back and legs as the blood traveled down.  It lasted for a week and they gave me something for the pain.  When they did an MRI on my back they found 2 hemotomas, a disk issue and some neck stuff so I'm sure that exacerbated the issue.  

I also have taken gabapentin but for different reason and I don't remember having any side effects.  Good luck to you!

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Take your time.  I was conducting conference calls from the ICU and now I don't remember them.  Work can wait.  Give yourself time to heal.  You will have ups and downs.  I have a nagging black cloud that haunts me from time to time.  Just recognize it and let it run its course.  It will leave again.  When you do go back to work, listen to your body.  It will tell you when to slow down.  I, like many on here, still struggle with short-term memory.  So you may want to get in the habit of taking notes.

 

Best wishes!

 

Chris

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Wow, did you say you are a surgeon? What is going on with all these docs???? Anyway, you are 3 weeks out. Very early. I had VERY significant sleep issues for 10 weeks. The sleep issues are probably what kept me from working more than anything. I highly recommend as long as necessary off work. If you go back to work too early, you may not have slept and will be sleep deprived. Coworkers will talk about you.

 

Just do yourself a favour, however long it takes. When you return, you want to be 100%, right? And that means you had a good night sleep. You are very early at 3 weeks. You have a long frustrating road of possibly several months ahead of you. I took long walks and hit golf balls to maintain my sanity. You will likely notice you cant listen to some things (tv, books on tape, stupid conversations). I expect you have more symptoms than you realize.

 

I made weird decisions with my family. But rest assured, after 10 wks I'm 100% back to normal and working fulltime and you may be too. The sleep thing was really annoying and persisted the longest. It kept me from working more than any other symptom. Good luck.

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I would not go back to work until I know for sure that I m ready because we cannot make mistakes.

Even if we are healthy , we might make mistakes or miss something because we are tired or sleep deprived.

 

During residency, we had one very good resident put a femoral line in the wrong patient in the icu due to fatigue and lack of sleep. But the patient was ok.

Doctors can make mistakes when they are tired by not communicating well, not documenting things, missing a diagnosis, making wrong diagnosis, giving the wrong meds , not catching allergies , drug interactions etc.  

 

If you do procedures and surgeries where you can affect a person's life on the table, You have to make sure you are ready to go back.

Good luck and take one day at a time. Try meditation. That will calm you too.

 

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Saw a patient again who had SAH in 1997 at age 33. No procedures.  She fell off the radar due to lack of insurance. But I see her parents all the time.

 

She said she heard a pop in her head and had the worst headaches of her life. Was in hospital for 12 days and had visual problems and headaches for a few more months.

 

She now works in her own office since she can’t tolerate noise.  I'm sending her back to neuro who are hard to get in.  Now just have dizziness . 

 

She was told she was one in a million and that she was very very lucky per her doctors. 

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