The Bionic Sound Project

this girl’s journey to sound

It’s Been Done – Surgery! Thursday, July 13, 2006

I had my cochlear implant on Monday, July 10th. I’m fine, but I had a really rough time with it, and ended up staying in the hospital for almost 2 and a half days. I’m at home now, and I’m doing okay, but not that great. I’m making this entry very short and will update more later.

My surgery was around 7 am, and I didn’t get moved up to a hospital bed until around 2 pm, I believe. I was very sick and having a lot of trouble with post-anesthesia issues.

Here are some pictures from my experience (on Surgery Day and the two days afterwards)


My Dad and I at Good Sam around 4:50 am




Mom and I in pre-op. After the IV was put in, I started hyperventilating (without realizing it, until Bridget, my nurse, told me to breathe) and was vomiting before surgery.



My doctor came in to see me, and was teasing me about throwing up (along with my family). He put a little black X to mark the spot.



Me with my favorite barf bucket. That was at my side 24/7 for the last 4 days. Look! I have lovely flowers from Alex!



Still sicker than a dog.



Alex comes to visit right after I was wheeled out of post-op and into my room!



My doctor checking up on me on my 2nd day in the hospital around 11 am. He told me that I had to start sitting up in bed (I didn’t want to because of the nausea/dizziness) because they were afraid that I would collapse my lungs or something.



Removing the bandage on my third day in the hospital. A few hours later, I got to go home (which I did not enjoy, because the car ride and moving around made me extremely dizzy. I was just hanging on for dear life.)



I did not like him removing the bandage, as the hairs on my head were being yanked out.



My implant scar!

Despite all the problems I had, I look at this as the worst of it is over, and now everything from this point forward can be positive. Steph and I didn’t get to meet up before she had her surgery. Bummer, it would have been cool. The best part about this is us sharing our experiences at the same time, so we both know it’s normal or not.


41 Responses to “It’s Been Done – Surgery!”

  1. Allison Says:


    Easy, I’m a photo major. 😛

    Actually, I wasn’t nervous about the surgery (others would disagree) and I kind of had an idea of what I wanted to take pictures of, because my mom just had back surgery on the 28th, so I saw that whole process and knew what to expect.

    Don’t freak out about the bandage picture! It actually feels great to have it off, but at first I was feeling all weirded out cuz it felt like a phantom bandage was constricting my head, and it was just throbbing. I wanted it off, cuz I was itching like mad, and every time I moved, my hairs would get tugged, the ones thatwere stuck on the tape.

    And I finally took a shower on day #5 (today) because I was too sick/too dizzy to do it before. I feel much better, but still dizzy. It was weird, mom washing my hair for me…don’t even remember the last time we had been like tthat.

    A bell? That’s so cute. I’m just yelling, haha.

  2. Allison Says:

    Kyle, just like your pictures! i am strong!

    and the ci better work! :-p

  3. Allison Says:

    thanks kat! you’re so sweet! i hope you don’t have to go through this ever!

  4. Allison Says:

    Ray Ray,

    with music from one of my favorite dj’s! ;I)

  5. Allison Says:

    thanks steve!

    i sure hope so too. we’ll find out on aug. 9th. how are you doing? i haven’t heard from you in forever.

  6. Allison Says:

    thanks rho! how are you doing?

  7. Allison Says:

    thanks kev!

    i definitely will let you guys know how everything’s going.

    how’s the weather up in maine right now?

  8. Allison Says:

    Hey Sam! Good to hear from ya!

    Yeah it was the anesthesia that made me sick. I was throwing up blood/blood clots till 5 am the next day. It really sucked, cuz every time I went to the bathroom, I threw up while sitting on the toilet.

    They said my throat was “oozing blood” from the tube/vomiting.

    You gotta tell me about your experience!

    Hope summer’s going awesome for you.

  9. Allison Says:

    Sam, nope, not my first surgery. i’ve had two surgeries on my ear before, and one other surgery.

    diarrhea, i think, is so embarasssing! has anybody told you that you’re weird? :-p definitely feeling so much better, but you don’t wanna know how i had to take the meds to keep me from barfing!

    thanks for telling me about your experience.

  10. Allison Says:


    i know, i know. between my phone sucking mega-ass, and not being online very much, i’ve kind of disappeared myself!

    it definitely can only get better from here! ^.^

    and where the hell is matt? he’s gone AWOL on me. 😦

    are you gonna have an apartment-warming party in the fall?

  11. Allison Says:

    Jason, you maaaaaaaaaay want to re-read my post carefully, as it wasn’t smooth sailing! For Steph it was, but not for me! 😛

  12. Allison Says:


    Ok ok ok. 😛

    Well, I was barfing up blood/blood clots, which is why I had to stay in the hospital till wednesday. And everybody I know has done this as an outpatient procedure or went home 23 hours later.

    What was your experience like?

  13. Allison Says:

    *pounce* STEF!

    Well, we got that taken care of! But we will catch up soon when you don’t have to take off, and when I can actually sit and have an extended conversation on the computer without getting dizzy!

    I can’t wait to hear all about your adventures in ITALIA!

  14. Allison Says:

    Good, Jen, you’re catching on fast.picture posts are good. Speaking of that, where’s yours? 😛

    And you made me laugh with your rhyme.

    And its “reap”.

    I looooooooves you too!

  15. Allison Says:

    Thane, like they say, no place like home. However, I wish I had the hospital bed, cuz it was so comfy!

    I won’t know what its like till August 9th, cuz that’s my activation date. But I will keep you updated!

  16. Allison Says:

    it’s okay! sorry i didn’t respond earlier, but i’ve been fighting nausea/dizziness.

    a ci, according to google is <i>”medical device that bypasses damaged structures in the inner ear and directly stimulates auditory nerve to allow some deaf individuals to learn to hear and interpret sounds and speech.”</i>

    but you know me, i just want to take my hearing to new levels!

    gonna have a end of summer/pre-school year bbq at the lake again?

  17. Allison Says:

    Jessi, somehow I missed this comment. I am so sorry to hear about that.

    I really hope they didn’t find a tumor. 😦

    *hugs* do let me know what’s going on.

    I won’t have a car right away when I get back to school, but I’m sure I can drag some other people to a BBQ if we hold one. I’ll let you know if we do go to the lake as well.

  18. Allison Says:

    christie! 🙂 i know, i’ve really gone AWOL from the internet, because my phone has had an attitude, and I don’t keep the computer on at my mom’s house. Plus my computer’s been starting to hate me recently, so I need to do some work on it and get it running smoothly again.

    as for when I decided to get a CI, i’ve been thinking about it off and on since 1997. I applied for one through the FDA trials, but I missed the cutoff for the implant criteria by 1%, and since then, I kinda felt like, well maybe my hearing’s too good for an implant, so i’m not going to mess around with it.

    now that i’m getting older and the technology has come so far since then, it’s looking like a good time to get an implant. plus i’m starting to notice i’m not using my right ear very much anymore to listen (partly because my hearing aids were falling apart). i know you’re not on LJ very much, but I was talking about it this spring, specifically if you look at the cochlear implant tag…that’ll give you a little more insight into it. 🙂

    how are you doing? don’t forget to bring your camera back to school this fall!

  19. Steph Says:

    how could you take pictures before the surgery like your ear marked & stuff.
    i was too nervous to think about that lol.
    omg, that last few pictures are freaking me out right now.
    i’d rather have the bandage on and not see it at all.
    when are you able to shower?
    i’m feeling a bit worse now than i did at the hospital.
    my parents are sleeping right now, and i have a bell if i need ‘em. lol
    hope you’re feeling better!

  20. Kyle Says:

    Hope you feel better, and hope the CI works!

  21. Kat Says:

    wow thanks for sharing your experience. i’m glad you got through it.*many hugs*

  22. RayRay Says:

     now just make it wifi ready and stream some internet techno stations 24/7

  23. Steve Says:

    Congrats! I really hope you get all that you are looking for after such a hard process. Best wishes.

  24. Rho Says:

    Hope you feel better!!!!

  25. Kevin Says:

    Congratulations!! I’m glad your surgery went well in the end. Get some rest and let us know how everything progresses! 🙂

  26. Sam Says:

    glad the surgery went well even if you got sick and all of that. you will be okay. it was probably from the meds and such. take it easy and feel better!xo

  27. Ariel Says:

    I’ve been wondering where the hell you were!!!
    It can only get better from here!

  28. Jason Says:

    congrats! i’m glad it was smooth sailing.

  29. Stef Says:

    I miss you soo much!ALLISONNNNNNNNN! I am so glad your OK! I miss you soooo much and i really wana talk to you some time soon. Get better and call me- seing as I am back from Italy. LOVE YOU LIKE WOAH!

  30. Jen G. Says:

    I hadn’t commented yet because I haven’t seen the post yet… I should have expected a picture post out of this ;)It’s icky that you’re sickly, but soon you can reep[sp?] the benefits!

    I loooooooooooooooooooooooooove you

  31. Thane Says:

    Wow. Good to know you’re out of hospital now.Can you notice a difference already?

  32. Jessi Says:

    going to sound ignorant here, but what’s a ci? i’m a bit too sloppy drunk to google.

  33. Jason Says:

    Lol, allison! I did read your post word for word. I said “smoth sailing” because you survived. :-POk, im kidding about the “survived” part but it could have been worse and im glad it wasn’t that bad.

  34. Kyle Says:

    <i>Hey sam! Good to hear from ya!</i>

    I think this has a new meaning for you, Allison.

  35. Sam Says:

    was this your first surgery?? .. i can’t imagine throwing up blood. *shudders* i hate vomiting more than anything. i’d rather to have a reallly BAD case of diaherra instead of puking. i hope you’re feeling so much better experience was very simple. hmm i’ll update my lj about my experience but i don’t have any pics. sad.

  36. Christie Says:

    Like someone else mentioned, I was wondering where you were… I’m glad that the surgery didn’t go disastrous although there were quite the side effects. 😀 Hope your recovery goes along well and finishes up soon! When did you decide to have a cochlear implant?I totally missed that…

  37. Jessi Says:

    i don’t know i hadn’t thought of it, i should do another one.glad to hear you’ve got happy news to share, part of my blonde’ed phase at the moment is due to me hearing my doctors say “we think we’ve found a tumor” so i’m a bit out of the loop on these things.
    tre cool!

  38. Christie Says:

    I’m doing great! 🙂 I’m interning with the American Lung Association of Washington office in Seattle-back home. 🙂 I’m enjoying time with family and friends and enjoying the Seattle scenery again.It’s good to hear about the process of getting a CI. I’ve also considered your point of view when I think about the possibility of getting a CI for myself. I don’t know if I want to get it now… and plus it’s a ton of money. I’ve also gotten used to hearing aids and still use them remarkably well as I’ve been told. Therefore.. I’m still waiting for when they improve technology even more and we’ll see from there… I am told that I can be a candidate since my hearing is severe to profound, but I almost wasn’t for some reason I forget. But anyways… 🙂

    I will have to remember to bring my manual camera to RIT. Perhaps you would be able to develop them for me? 😛 haha… Plus I’ll have to get film, but to me it seems pretty expensive getting them at Campus Connections, is it? Perhaps I’m wrong… I haven’t shopped there for photography items as you have. 🙂 hehe So we’ll see if it’ll be good to bring it in the first place. 😀

  39. Kat Says:

    can’t say i would want to go through that. any kind of surgery scares me. you’re a strong cookie.

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