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Surgical G-Tube Removal Recovery

Apollo's g-tube removal recovery has been rough.

Apollo's g-tube removal recovery has been rough.

It’s tough to be Apollo. His recovery from his g-tube removal is not going as smoothly as I hoped.

When the surgeon came out to speak to me after the surgery I asked about how much pain to expect.

“It will be tender, like a bruise” he replied. He said it should be totally manageable with a little Tylenol if he even needed that. When we left the hospital, Apollo walked to his mandatory wheelchair. He was tired and groggy but in no pain. He threw up a few times on the way home, but that isn’t unusual after surgery. The doctor had numbed the entire area, so he didn’t feel anything.

Three days in I assume of these two things must be true.

  1. Either the surgeon has never had a bruise or
  2. he has never had a g-tube stoma surgically closed.

Apollo’s recovery has been very rough and nothing, nothing like a “bruise”.

The next day, day one of recovery was hard. He was walking hunched over, painfully slow, like an 80-year-old man. He was moving exactly like I did after my c-section. Rolling over, sitting up and turning were extremely painful for him.  He was also running a low-grade fever.

Yesterday, day two of recovery was worse. The pain was worse and his temperature higher.

I called the nurse down at Children’s who told me I should be switching between Tylenol and ibuprofen every three hours (standard pain treatment after surgery). I hadn’t been dosing him every three hours because 1) he was only in pain if he moved, 2) the doctor said it would be “tender like a bruise” so preventative pain measures hardly seemed necessary (in his mind) and 3) getting him to take medicine orally is every bit as difficult as I feared.

Since yesterday afternoon I have been doing every three hours dosing. He woke up in pain in the night and then early this morning.

The “no PE for a week” warning seems a little bit silly since he can barely walk. There is no way he could walk up to the bus stop at the top of our driveway, much less attend a day of school.

He is asleep at the moment (after a very bad night) so I have no idea how he is going to be today, day three.



  1. Klara

    I am really sorry to hear this. The pain sounds too dramatic and he is running fever too, I would be worried about a post-op infection (and I really hope I’m wrong).

  2. Melpub

    I would take him to a good pediatrician. This much pain does sound like more than the prescribed meds can manage, and the fever suggests infection.
    I’m a worry wart. Sorry.

    • Tanya

      I agree…be very careful if he has a fever. After an appendectomy I developed staph infection in the incision and it was HORRIBLE. Better to catch it sooner than later, if there is infection! Poor baby!

      • Renee

        For sure. I called and talked to a nurse on Thursday, called and talked to a doctor on Saturday. Neither seemed concerned in the least. Too bad, since it turned out to be a puss-fill infection :(

    • Renee

      I’m not a worry wart, but I am very aware and watchful of his medical stuff. We ended up going to a walk in clinic (since it was Saturday) before heading to Seattle.

  3. Heidi

    I’m still in shock you had to have to surgically closed. They just took my daughters after 8 years and just let it close, took only a couple days was completely closed and healed with no pain and no surgery.

    • Renee

      He had both scar and granualtion tissue surrounding the site. If he didn’t have that, or just a small amount, they would have let it close on its own.

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