My mother just got a “Left Supine Craniotomy for Aneurysm Clipping” yesterday. She’s had difficulty waking up fully, but has been in and out of sleep today… How long did it take for those who have had clipping surgery to wake up from the anesthesia? I just need some comfort…
Cheri, as @DickD says it’s really impossible to give a time as we all react to anesthesia differently. When one speak about aneurysm repairs, we need to think differently with time length than say if someone has broken a leg. Seems some folks just take a bit more time to get over the anesthesia and the craniotomy. I think the reassuring thing for the medical team is that she is waking up. Please take heart in that it’s a very good sign!
Firstly, Welcome to Ben’s Friends. Lots of good people with lots of personal experience around these parts. I must also agree with everything both Richard (aka DickD) and Moltroub have said.
Sleep is not a bad thing. Our bodies use sleep to recharge and recuperate. A craniotomy is a MAJOR assault on the body. Our skull is made of bone to protect the brain. The medicos have opened your mother’s skull and disturbed the fine neurocircuitry within. The impact of which can be shocking for all involved, but especially your mother. The medicos will still be watching her and monitoring her condition regularly, if they feel the need to intervene, they will. The recovery processes can take a long time, no I mean a L.O.N.G. time, so patience (and lots of it) is going to be very important.
The recovery from any neurosurgery takes time. How long? Nobody can say with any great surety. I was given the obligatory/normal 6-8wks, but my craniotomy took much longer and was nothing like a straight line of improvement but more like a rollercoaster of up’s and down’s. Even months later I was still up and down, it was exhausting. I’m almost 10yrs on from my last surgery and some days my symptoms up and bite me so bad, it could have been yesterday.
Your stresses are normal. It can be very trying time, but your mother is in the hospital, the best place she can be at the moment. She will be surrounded by all the care she needs. I say this because post-surgery they were keeping charts every hour, day and night on me. Monitoring everything. They had a neurosurgeon on call, so any issues and they were onto it really quickly.
Now, please understand, I am not saying this to be rude, far from it BUT as stressful as all of this is you have to look after yourself too. Burnout is VERY common for family and carers in these situations and the shock of it all can throw our normal routines all out of whack. You still need sleep, you still need food, and you still need time for you (even more so in times of stress). If one of these is missing that burnout can occur much, much quicker. If you’re burnt out before your mother leaves hospital you’ll have no energy to support her in the transition.
Please remember to look after yourself. We are always here if you need.
Thank you so much @DickD! your response was the first one to my post, as I was feeling very sad and panicky since the nurses were saying they weren’t too happy with how long it was taking her to wake up. But it’s been about 3 days now and she’s doing better, so thank you for the comfort during that critical time. Everyone is different, and I think she’s personally more sensitive to anesthesia.
This was so thorough, I so appreciate it! I felt much better after reading through it. And you’re right, I was so anxious and burning myself out when she just came out of surgery, so my dad and I have been taking shifts. I am feeling more confident and better about her recovery.
This is important. Make sure you don’t sacrifice yourself trying to “be there”. This can be a very long road and it is important to look after yourself so that at the right time you can look after your mum. I always liken it to being told on an aircraft to fit your own oxygen mask before attending to a child. It is contrary to what you want to do but important to make sure you’re ok to look after your mum. Don’t skimp on looking after you.
I know… …me too!!!
Prior to my own neuro journey, I had other family members, my sister-in-law and my niece, both require neurosurgery and the stresses on the family were HUGE. My SIL was found to have a terminal glioblastoma, a nasty brain cancer, and we made a bit of a roster so that we each had time for ourselves in amongst supporting her. The stresses were still there, but they were shared between us all rather than them all being piled on one person.
Taking shifts is a grand idea, smart thinking! When my younger brother was in Loma Linda VA hospital with esophageal cancer, my parents went to Cali from Missouri and I from NC. We had to take turns it was stressful and exhausting. We didn’t plan on enough me time in the beginning. Then I started taking my brother out for daily excursions about three times a week to the angst of the RNs😂. So take some me time and do something non hospital related. Only takes a few hours to reboot yourself. The hardest part was convincing my parents that we needed to take a day off and not go to the hospital. But it helped us all.
I really don’t know how long it took me as I don’t remember anything for the first six days after the rupture. It was a surprise that I was laying in a hospital bed in a different city with 10 doctors surrounding my bed at 6 in the morning asking me questions… The neurosurgeon introduced them as his team.
I think it depends on if the aneurysm ruptured or not. My first aneurysm ruptured in 2008 was flown to UCSF where I had a clipping done but because of the trauma from the rupture and swelling I was kept in an induced coma for about 6 days. I had another clipping done in Jan of this year & was awake in a few hours but still very groggy. Here i am 10 months later walking, talking, whistling, singing, taking care of my chickens, very blessed. I hope all goes well with your family, I dont know you but will keep you in my prayers. Brain stuff, so scary believe me i know.
Experience teaches us that there is no rest for patients in ICU. It’s hard to realize that unless you’re the one in the bed I think, with the exception of the ICU RNs of course. I always was baffled when one of the Residents would tell me I needed to get more sleep:crazy_face:
Thank you @TinaBee. I don’t know anything that went on in ICU. My boyfriend told me they kept me sleeping until the swelling went down. It was all weird in the sense that I had problems walking and eating, as well as thinking…I think the hardest thing for me is I look good on the outside but on the inside I am messed up the bit. Lol It’s hard.