I want to thank Dr. Brown for solving my most bothering issue of 2020. I got a hernia in December 2018 during three days winter backpacking trip at Tahoe mountains. I won’t tell you how much fun it was – probably the most suffering experience of my life. Carrying the backpack up and down the mountains through the deep snow in cold weather with the constant pain in your stomach – was unforgettable! Earlier, I also felt the pain after windsurfing practices, but I didn’t even understand what it was, so I didn’t do anything about it.
But coming back from Tahoe, I’ve decided to address the issue. I went to PAMF here in Fremont, CA. At first, they’ve ignored me, dismissing the hernia diagnosis altogether. After it was confirmed by ultrasound, the PAMF surgeon still has never get back to me. I let it go at that time because it got better and didn’t bother me anymore. Then it became worse again in summer 2020. First, I couldn’t do push-ups, then I stopped running; it was too painful. Later I couldn’t even walk for a long time, got tired quickly. It was so unusual and uncomfortable, so I finally decided to fix it.
I had enough of PAMF’s ignorance, so I searched online and quickly found Dr. Brown 10 min away from my home. It was around mid-November 2020, I didn’t want to completely miss the ski season, so I pressed it forward. By that time, I’ve studied a few websites on the topic, including ones from the top medical institutions – UCSF and Stanford. The main idea I’ve got from my research is that it is not a complex surgery, if doctor does it regularly. It’s essential to find someone who focuses specifically on hernias and does hundreds of procedures a year. I thought Dr. Brown fits that requirement for the right professional. I’ve also trusted his experience with mesh/non-mesh choices; his explanation on the website sounded reasonable to me.
At the first visit, Dr. Brown confirmed the diagnosis and proposed the surgery. He also explained how it works, how to get ready, and what happens after. We’ve scheduled the procedure a week later – in early-December 2020. In total, I spent about 6-7 hours in the surgery center in Fremont, mostly waiting. I have quite busy and stressful work, so it was a good relaxing time out off work, and I took a nap for an hour or so. Since surgery is not something I often do, it was a unique and exciting experience. Everything went well, and my wife picked me up around 5 pm the same day.
The next few days were somewhat rough and uncomfortable, but not even closely comparable to my Tahoe trip. I’ve never found enough reason to use strong pain medicine, which was prescribed to me. What was especially surprising is that every morning Dr. Brown called my wife or me to check how I feel. It was very kind and unexpected. Every day I felt better. After two days I was walking for 30-40 minutes, in two weeks I was riding a bicycle, and in a month I was skiing (carefully, with kids :)).
Now it’s been two months, I feel great! I’m back into push-ups and running and hope to go backpacking sometime soon. 😊 I feel very thankful to Dr. Brown for the great work he does!