Amber had her surgury done at the end of the month and is now home healing up.
The official name for the surgery was called a Radical Cystectomy with Ileal Conduit Urinary Diversion aka a Urostomy. Her supra-pubic catheter, as well as her bladder, and me having to flush it for her every day or so are now things of the past. Technically this is skilled nursing stuff but the nurses were more than happy to train me to do it so they didn't have to.
The urostomy is rather interesting. They remove the bladder entirely and then connect the two ureters from the kidneys to a small section of intestine they cut out and fed to the surface of the abdomen. When it's all healed up, it will look like a perky red nipple. To that attaches a small plastic pouch that collects the urine. The icky factor of it is how the intestine section works. I never knew it but the intestines are also mucus glands so they're constantly oozing out a bit of slime. This is what helps keep everything clean so bacteria doesn't get inside. Actually, it's not as gross as I thought it would be.
The interesting part is that I seem to be doing a better job of changing her seals than the home health nurse does. She has changed it twice and both times I had to change it in less than a day after because her's leaked. I'm guessing it's because she has only worked with patients who had them for a long time and Amber's is quite new.
My ultimate goal is to not have to do any of this anymore but I still need to know how to do it if there is a problem while we're hanging out together or if she has used up her monthly allotment of home health visits.
So my project for the month is to take lots of photos and maybe some videos too and assemble them into a guide for her aides. It's just as easy to screw it all up as it is to do it perfectly correct so I'm pushing to make the latter happen more often.