Friday, August 1, 2008

Talking about going to Family House

Mellie left about 10:30 - after talking to his nurse and saying good-bye to Butch. Her morning report - "changing from Lovenox to Coumadin. Heart beat has gone into bradycardia 56 - 59 BPM. Probably lopressor may get switched back to 37.5 mg. Lasix is stayin @ 20 mg IV. All else looks good. 0 labs so far today".

What that means is that the heart beat is swinging back and forth between the two conditions, trigeminy and A-fib. They are adjusting the medication accordingly, and are getting closer - the cardiology team is happy with the progress. 2 days ago his legs and feet were so swollen -it looked like he had elephantitus - the swelling is almost all gone (the lasix part).

As for the infection - haven't spoken to the infection control team yet today, but - they said yesterday infection is almost gone. He is on a pill now, so we can leave when everything elso is OK. Switching over to counadin will help with going home also. As the electrolytes get stabilized, and he uses less and less pain medicine, his confusion is clearing up.

Dr. Yu - from Dr. Gamblin's team - came in and said we should be in control of that heart beat soon, and - he is thinking about discharge. He talked about POSSIBLY Sunday , and discussed with Butc and I whether we should go to Family House or a rehab facility - naturally, Butch wants to go to Family House. I just worry because he is SO weak - hasn't walked in 3 or 4 days, can't even sit in the chair without discomfort. Because of that, I said until Physical and Occupational therapy takes a look at him, I withhold my vote. They came - about 1/2 an hour later, and evaluated him. When they got him standing up - his blood pressure dropped, and it is already low. So - they got him back in bed and today he is going to try sitting up for periods in the chair and breathing into the spirometer. Tomorrow , he will try walking again.

He ate solid foods again yesterday - and today - he is doing quite well with the solid foods. Mellie and I went to the store and brought him frest fruit - cut up melons, strawberries, blueberries, etc., and he likes that. Also - brought him scrambled eggs abd he ate most of them (I finished them - can't waste food, you know)! The breakfast they offer you is VERY limited - cold cereal or instant oatmeal, a banana, hot coffee or tea - you really need to supplement it with something more substantial. He really likes that berry V8 fusion, and drank it even when he was terribly ill. That is great stuff - an 8 oz. glass is a full serving of fruits and a full serving of vegetables. With that and 2 or 3 ensures every day - you can go a long way towards making up for the lack of nutrients, BUT - without solid foods, you can't really get your strength back. And - he really didn't want to go on the total parental nutrition by IV if he didn't have to. So - food is coming along.

I can't tell you how much it boosted me up to have Melanie here with me for a couple of days. I am feeling much, much better now. I got a little more rest, stepped up my medicine (after consulting the Doctor), and we spent a bit of time away from the hospital. I am learning that this is MUCH more difficult than I anticipated, and I must learn to manage the stress. I have been waiting for him to turn the corner, and it looks to me now that - it is "just around the corner"! However - since things change on a dime here in this altered state of reality - let us not get our hopes about discharge up to much - and - I want him to be stable when we leave.

To anyone who is reading this from work - I don't really like being on this end of the medical spectrum - I would love to leave medicine to the professionals and be dealing with computers! I have seen - up very close - how the computer systems are utilized here by the clinical staff, and what they think of the system - there are a LOT of manual systems in place - everyone seems to have one, in addition to the elctronic system, due to - among other things - a basic distrust in the stability of the computer system - for very good reasons, they assure me. They are in the midst of going total electronic - but - have a LONG way to go, I think. I miss you all and am looking forward to a future when Butch is on the road to recovery, and I can return to work. After this, work will seem like FUN (I hope).


Loma said...

Great post--until I got to the end and read "After this work will seem like fun" and I freaked. Are you out of your mind???

Seriously, things do sound much, much better and so do you! So glad Melanie was able to come down and take some of the stress off you. Butch looks really great when you consider everything that's been done to him. Give him hugs from me and keep one for yourself.

Love, Loma

MellieD1974 said...

Glad I could help. The girls really liked the pics and of course the stuffed animals. I am missing you already. Keep me posted. love you lots and lots.

Alex's birthday - slide show