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The Uterus Removal Journey: I Did Not See That One Coming...


As a pelvic floor physical therapist, I was prepared for many things in regard to this surgery and healing. However, I learned something new and decided to share this new knowledge with you! Two days ago, I noticed an itchy rash popping up on my stomach. Being fair, it's not uncommon for my skin to be reactive to certain things. I assumed it was the naproxen, stopped taking it. After a few hours, the rash was progressing so I took a couple of anti-histamines. By that afternoon, the rash had spread to the tops of my thighs. I messaged my surgery team who agreed to continue with the antihistamines and stop the naproxen. The next morning, the rash was still there with no change.

In an effort to ensure that I wasn't losing my mind (I know, that ship has sailed), I booked an appointment at the urgent care center. I can handle a rash but I mostly wanted to make sure the incisions were not compromised by the rash. The provider said it looked like contact dermatitis and to continue with what I've been doing and add hydrocortisone cream. I had no idea how I could have gotten contact dermatitis on my stomach and upper thighs, so I was not thrilled with the answer but know that it did look like contact dermatitis. She assured me the incisions were healing great.

After I purchased some Benadryl and a variety of topical creams, I returned home. A couple of hours later, my surgeon messaged me and informed me that it sounded like I was experiencing an allergic reaction to the surgical scrub/cleanse they put on my stomach and thighs before starting the surgery. Apparently, there can be a delayed reaction.

That was my reaction. I am now back in Olympia as of this afternoon to discover that yellow jackets have set up camp on my porch and doorframe. They gave me a lovely greeting by stinging me twice in the thigh/buttocks region. I called my landlord to come empty a can of whatever insect spray he had on hand to keep me from being held hostage in my apartment. He complied. I'm covered in hydrocortisone cream. Other than waiting for the rash to calm down, a swollen right butt cheek and not be tempted to scratch, everything else is good. Y'all have a great weekend!

Kathleen Neal, DPT

PS: My favorite Disney movie is The Sword in the Stone

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