Logistics

After my sort-of whirlwind appointment with my urologist, I was sent home and told that I could expect a call from his secretary within a couple of days providing me with the date of my surgery. Free health care means that you won’t get much say in when your surgery takes place, but I found out that there is a bit of accommodation made for life stuff when it comes to scheduling.

I waited for the call for a week, but all I got was radio silence. A quick call to my urologist’s office confirmed that all the staff were on vacation and that I’d have to wait another week. Even then, I must’ve been on the bottom of the priority list, because I didn’t receive a call. I don’t know if this is typical, but I could see that being so. A circumcision is actually a fairly minor procedure from a urologist’s point of view, after all.

In between my appointment and receiving my surgery date, I had received an offer I couldn’t turn down for a summer job in another province. So when I called the office and learned that my surgery would be on June 19th, I was a bit worried. I explained the situation to the secretary and we went back and forth on dates until a mutually-agreeable one had been decided on. My urologist only does surgeries three days of the week, so it was kind of a difficult thing to schedule. The secretary was super nice about the whole thing, though.

Here’s the thing: after a circumcision, it is recommended that you take a week off for recovery. You could certainly function normally immediately following the procedure, but there can be a lot of blood and swelling which are painful and uncomfortable. It’s really difficult for a student to fake a week off-we don’t get medical leave from school, after all. Thankfully, my university has a fall reading week. I decided to sacrifice that time for recovery and managed to schedule my appointment for the Friday immediately before the break.

Here’s the other thing: there are a lot of things to do to prep for a circumcision. You’ll need to avoid aspirin and other painkillers for a week prior to the surgery, call two days in advance of the surgery for a pre-op consultation (apparently done over the phone-sketchy!), call one day in advance to get your surgery time, and arrange for a ride home following the surgery. Apparently shaving isn’t important, because they’d rather do that for you, if required, while you’re under anesthesia. It’s really inconvenient that you only get the surgery time the day before–once again, that’s hard for students to work around. I guess I’ll just have to take the whole day off and get a note from my urologist for my professors. It all seems very complicated, given that the procedure is often done in under an hour in the urologist’s office in the US. I now understand why the process is taking so long and I’m glad that I have the time to plan all this out. I would advise anyone getting cut to do the same. The more prepared you are going in, the smoother the recovery process is likely to be.

Oddly enough, I’m most stressed about getting a ride home from the hospital. Not many of my close friends have cars, and as I’ve mentioned before, talking about this issue (especially with people I don’t know well) is really difficult for me. Thankfully I’ve got a few months to figure that one out.

-T

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