|Dr. Brockwell's office set things up for me to check into Matilda International Hospital at 6:00 AM on December 29, for surgery at 8:00 AM. Lin, Aaron, and I flew into Hong Kong on the 27th, and had the 28th to play. We stayed at the serviced apartments at Matilda, which were wonderful.
At 5:45 I got to reception, checked in, and was given a place to scrub up and prepare for the operation. They gave me a checkup which found all normal except for heart rate: my pulse rate was 45, normal for me but not what they are used to in someone before an operation. I felt confident that it was the right thing to do, had researched both the Birmingham Hip and Dr. Brockwell on the web enough to know they were both state-of-the-art, and had prepared as well as I could. There was nothing to be nervous about, I was ready.
The anaethetist came in and introduced himself, and explained he would be using general, and why. It was fine with me. Then Dr. Brockwell and the assistant surgeon came in, along with Hua Lin. We finished our discussion and they took me in to the operating room. When they started giving the anaesthetic I was surprised it was not the "99...98...9zzz" I had heard about, for several minutes after getting the anaesthetic I remained awake and alert, and none of the doctors seemed to think this unusual.
The next thing I remember is being half awake in the recovery room with Hua Lin and Aaron sitting beside the bed. I told them, apparently repeatedly, to go away and come back later - perfectly logical, since I was in no state to enjoy their company.
Apparently others did not find this stage as smooth as it was for me. The operation was supposed to take 3 hours, but at 11:30 as Hua Lin was preparing to come over she got a call from the doctors asking her to come to the operating room immediately. Apparently I was bleeding a lot, and they wanted to ask her if I had been taking any Chinese medicines, which could inhibit clotting. I had not (unless my mother-in-law slipped me something in that last meal I had at her house...), and they finished up. I lost 1.5 liters, and they gave me 0.6 liters.
For details, here is a copy of the operation report.