I am about to schedule an extra oral approach to my right styloid. It is hooked around my external carotid artery. Looking for pre and post op tips and recovery time. It is also highly ossified at the ligament. Causing massive pain from chest to ear as well as heart palpitations. Dr Rishi Gupta Vascular Neurologist diagnosed Eagles and Dr Michael Vick ENT is to do the surgery both with Wellstar Hospital outside Atlanta.
I had my right styloid removed in mid-Nov. - extraoral approach. It was close to 2 wks post op before I started functioning sort of normally, & at 2 months, I actually felt like myself again. I was sent home post op w/ steroids to control swelling, anti-nausea meds in case I needed them, antibiotics & oxycodone (Percocet) for pain (as this is much less likely to cause nausea than Vicodin). In the recovery room after my surgery they wouldn't let me go until they were certain I had no nausea. I made one little mention of my stomach feeling off, & they injected a bunch of anti-nausea meds into my IV. Nausea is a very common side effect of anesthesia which can last for a number of hours post-surgically. I was given jello in recovery & ate "blender" chicken vegetable soup an hour or so after I got home & had no problem w/ nausea (never needed the anti-nausea meds, thankfully).
I took 1 Percocet every 3 hours for pain. The name of the game for staying out of pain is to keep ahead of it. Don't let your pain meds wear off & your pain get to a severe point. It's really hard to play "catch up" in the pain reduction game. My doctor told me days 3-4 would be the worst as far as my pain went. I didn't believe it & tried cutting my pain meds back in that time frame. TERRIBLE mistake as I was in a lot of pain & ended up in our recliner in a barely functioning state for the better part of 2 days.
To recap: Stay on top of your pain. Don't worry about getting addicted to your pain meds. It won't happen in the first 2 weeks post surgery which is the most critical time for you to keep your pain at bay. Being in pain slows recovery. Don't be afraid to eat "blender" meals. I found that throwing a complete meal in the blender w/ some almond milk made a pretty tasty shake. Do keep ice handy & use it on your surgical site as needed but no longer than 20 min. on & no more often than 40-60 min. off over the course of the first couple of weeks. Keep your head elevated above 30 degrees when lying down during that time period, too. Be willing to listen to your body & take it easy but don't be a couch potato for 2 weeks either. Starting about day 3 post op, try taking a couple of short walks/day (10- 15 min.) to get your blood flowing.
So glad you found doctors who gave you a difinitive diagnosis & will do your surgery. It sounds a bit complicated compared to the norm, but we each have our quirks w/ ES! I will pray for everything to go perfectly & for a quick recovery for you.