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Hubby still on ventilator in hospital - needs trach put in today - has pneumonia - possible blood clot in arm - fever ..........

Trish_from_Pittsburgh's picture
Trish_from_Pitt...
Posts: 58
Joined: Nov 2009

Tough times ahead. Got the BIG GIRL PANTIES on!

Roy has been on the ventilator since his surgery on November 23. His lungs aren't working properly (due to COPD and pneumonia). Doc says a trach tube would be better for him. So they are putting that in today, along with a "filter" to catch any blood clots. His right arm is extremely swollen. They suspect it may be a blood clot. They did a doppler on him on Wednesday but couldn't even see any blood vessels at all because his arm is too swollen. They put him on a "chilling blanket" to try to reduce his fever, but it is staying elevated. They are keeping him sedated so he is comfortable. His feeding tube was clogged, so they put coffee in it (he would be thrilled to know that, he loves coffee!) Boy are we gonna have the stories to tell him when he wakes up!

Has anyone out there had any lung issues after surgery or had to have a trach put in?

I'd appreciate any help anyone can give me with this. Please keep us in your prayers, too.

Love,
Trish

Trish_from_Pittsburgh's picture
Trish_from_Pitt...
Posts: 58
Joined: Nov 2009

Just got back from the hospital. As terrible as it is to see Roy with a hole in his neck (the trach), he certainly looks better without that "snorkel" on his face! We really struggled with the decision to trach him or not. I put myself in his shoes and wondered is he going to be mad when he wakes up and say "Why did you agree to this and not give me longer to try to get off the ventilator?" or is he going to say "What the heck, what's one more scar anyway? I'm glad I didn't wake up to the ventilator on my face!" I think he will say the latter. When he had open heart surgery 4 years ago, he said that was the worst part of the ordeal, waking up with the ventilator (he is claustrophobic). He pleaded with the doctors before this surgery and said "Please keep me sedated until you get the vent out". But they said they have to wake you up with the vent in to see how well you are breathing before they can take the vent off. That made him very nervous!! So, seeing him tonight without the ventilator on his face, I think we made the right decision. But look out tomorrow, nurse Justin, when you try to wake him up and have to explain the trach and all his other problems to him. God bless all the nurses at Presby Hospital. They all have been so extremely nice to him and our whole family!!

However, the docs did not put the filter in him today (to catch any blood clots). Nurse Justin said after the docs consulted this morning, they felt it wasn't necessary and instead started him on a Heprin drip. I'll have to discuss this with the docs. They are monitoring the clotting factor of his blood very closely to keep the Heprin at the right amount. I hope they don't have to do this as a seperate surgery after he wakes up...

So far so good, I'll keep you updated with his progress as they try to wean him from the trach now. Papa Bear will be grumpy, I'm sure!

As I've said so many times before, I don't know what I would do without all my friends here. Everyone is so amazing. We all have learned a lot from each other! This is very theraputic for me!

I better put on my "golden slippers" tomorrow when I go to see Roy because I think I'll be "dancing in the rain" (I love doing the Electric Slide)! After all, I think there will be a rainbow after the rain tomorrow, don't you?

Love & hugs,
Trish

P.S. His temp is coming down ever so slowly.

MOE58's picture
MOE58
Posts: 649
Joined: May 2009

Trish,

I am so glad things are better, first off let me tell you they have to discuss your husband with you yes the HIPPA laws put a kink in things but there is a room somewhere you can talk private, I know I work for a hospital, don't worry about what nurse Justin says cause docs do change their minds, they did on jeff, Just know things will be okay, and I am glad to know you talk about different things in the room, thats what you need to do. Yes when you get scared just sign on to this site this was/is my therapy, and I know its yours too, I can tell by your postings, Each day you will see a little improvement and you will one day walk in and see him up and talking.

Yes get those GOLDEN SLIPPERS READY, you will need them, and when you think you cant do anymore beware William Marshall will cheer you up, I know he did me many times.

I just want you to know I am here with any questions.

Love and hugs
Lori

Trish_from_Pittsburgh's picture
Trish_from_Pitt...
Posts: 58
Joined: Nov 2009

Lori,

Boy, did I laugh when I read your post: "when you think you can't do anymore, beware William Marshall will cheer you up"!

He sure is the "Grand Marshall, Cheerleader Captain", isn't he? I think he makes us all laugh! He & Loretta should write a book. I'm sure it would be a best seller!

Now I'll go to bed laughing...zzz...zzz...zzz
Trish

P.S. Yes, I'm feeling much better. My BGP are on the right side tonight.

Trish_from_Pittsburgh's picture
Trish_from_Pitt...
Posts: 58
Joined: Nov 2009

William,

When I woke up this morning I thought "Boy, I really slept good last night". Now I know why - you were awake and doing research for me while I slept! 4:14 in the morning and you were researching heparin for me (what did I do to deserve you?)! I so understand why God never took you to heaven 7 years ago....I believe his purpose for you in life is to help all of us here and of course, to teach us to always praise Him. Thank you, God for allowing William Marshall in our lives!

Thank you so much for all the research you did for me. I think I can rest easier with "Dr. Marshall's" RX. It sounds like the heparin will work just as well as the filter.

Roy has a big scar down his chest from the open heart surgery 4 years ago. Even when he was still recovering right after the surgery, he was showing the grandkids "Pappy's boo-boo". He walks around without a shirt on all the time. He isn't self concious about his chest scar at all (plus, since he has lost 60 pounds it doesn't look as thick)! So, I really don't think another scar on him is going to bother him (especially when he hears about everything he went through).

They are constantly monitoring his blood. They said they prick his finger every 2-6 hours to check it and keep the Heparin at the right level. They really take good care of him! Actually, the nurses there work 12 hour shifts so he only has 2 nurses a day which makes team work for them a little closer-knit.

Again, thank you! Please know how much I appreciate you and all you do for me!!!

Hugs,
Trish

MOE58's picture
MOE58
Posts: 649
Joined: May 2009

Trish,

Its okay, Jeff had surgery on a Monday and was immediately put on a ventilator due to his lungs, i am going to quote as the doctor quoted me. "BEING A SMOKER DIDN'T HELP, AND HIS LUNGS ARE SICK VERY SICK" I know you said Roy quit smoking 5 years ago, but you have to realize that they deflatted his lung in surgery to get to his tumor, and with him having COPD doesn't help as the doctor told me, Jeff was on the ventilator from 7-23-09 to 8-9-09, you keep asking yourself will he come too or just lay there and suffer, Jeff too had a slight case of pneumonia, and they gave him antibotics, along with a fever, they kept him very sedated but you have to continue to talk to Roy, tell him of things going on, people needing him, whats going on at home etc like that, cause he can hear you he just cant talk he may be on a ventilator for quite sometime, they had to call in a lung specialist for Jeff and he was awesome, and with the doctor you have I think you have a awesome doctor too according to Mr Marshall, of course now Jeff had the open surgery and Roy didn't so you just have to think positive and keep your BGP up, I know its scary and i know its hard to see your husband laying there and not able to do nothing but you have to put one foot in front of the other and say okay Trish, you can do this, and you tell ROY honey, I know you are sick, but I love you and you have to stay strong for me, Of course Jeff did not have a Trach put in, and don't know anything about those, but everything else Roy has or is doing is the same scenrio as I went through, I had days I was so scared I didn't think I could go any further, then I would post something and somebody would calm my fears, and advise me what to do and how to do it and I would get through another day. I lived at the hospital as we are 45 minutes from the hospital, so I only came home long enough to shower and change clothes and then go back, lucky you don't live that far. Just keep your faith going cause one sunday night I left him to come home, I checked on him before I went to bed, and in the middle of the night, and I got up about 7 and was signing on to do some work from home when I got a call from the hospital stating he was off the ventilator and breathing on his own and he was asking for me, I was so overjoyed I had to call several people to let them know it was like GOD said Jeff wake up you have family that need you, I mean it too cause he was not breathing well when I left that night and then BAM, he was up and awake the nexxt day, so you just have to keep going cause they will do everything they can for him,

I want you to know I am here if you have any questions, I usually check this every night when I get home from work and off and on on the weekends.

Please know I am here and I HAVE DEFINITELY WALKED YOUR SHOES, and WORE THOSE BIG GIRL PANTIES.......

There will be prayers keep me posted.

Lori (and Jeff) aka moe and papa

Trish_from_Pittsburgh's picture
Trish_from_Pitt...
Posts: 58
Joined: Nov 2009

Lori,

You are so right, Lori. Just like you, everytime I'm afaid and I post something, somebody comes along with a message to encourage me and direct me in the right path and I cheer up right away! What a godsend everyone here has been!

I talk to Roy all the time when I'm at the hospital about our family and grandkids. But I won't talk about his problems in front of him (because I'm sure he can hear everything, he just can't talk yet). When I want to ask questions to the nurses or doctors I step outside in the hall because I don't want him to be agitated. The hospital doesn't like that though because of the new HEPA laws (they aren't allowed to discuss things with you in the hallways where anyone else can hear). Oh well, they'll get over it!

It certainly sounds like me and you have a lot in common. I appreciate you telling me about Jeff's experiences. It helps to know Roy's not the only one this has happened to and he can get over this "bump" in the road! I'm waiting for the day when Roy will suprise me and be sitting up when I walk in the room!

Thank you for your prayers and guidance,

Trish

Tina Blondek's picture
Tina Blondek
Posts: 1560
Joined: Nov 2009

Dearest Trish,
Wow!! You have gone through a lot these past few days!! God bless you. You and Roy will remain in my prayers. You are doing an excellent job Trish, keep hanging on!! Thanks for the updates. Best wishes to you Roy.

Sincerely,
Tina

Trish_from_Pittsburgh's picture
Trish_from_Pitt...
Posts: 58
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi everyone,

I just got back from my morning visit with Roy (I go twice a day to see him). When the nurse gave us an update of where he is now, my first thought wasn't "wow, I can't wait to tell our family how well he is doing (sorry, luv you, guys)", but "I can't wait to get on my computer and tell my friends at CSN"!

Well here's the update:

1. No more "chilling blanket". Fever is gone.

2. Still has pneumonia, but his lungs are almost clear now (nurse said 200% improvement over yesterday). They are still treating him with antibiotics.

3. They were trying to wean him slowly off the trach when we came in the room. He knew we were there and started to get a little agitated, so they sedated him again! They switched his meds and now are giving him a relaxant to keep him calm instead of the heavy sedation. And he went right back to sleep. They will try again later. Baby steps, they say. I'm ok with that...

4. His arm is still swollen, but it's slooooowly coming down. They are going to try another doppler on him today. They also ordered physical therapy to come everyday to exercise his arms and legs so when he comes to he won't be so stiff trying to walk.

5. They bumped up his feedings. His is tolerating that well. I don't think he had any coffee in there today though. lol

6. Then to top it all off, nurse Amanda last night gave him a nice shave and even trimmed his moustauche (now that's what I call service!)! He looks good!

So, that's my morning update! Couldn't wait to tell everyone! Now I'll call the family and let them know. But you were first on my list, my dear friends!

It's a sunny day!

Love to all,
Trish

mumphy's picture
mumphy
Posts: 486
Joined: Jun 2009

Hi Trish,

First of all I have to say how bad I feel for both you and Roy that you are having to go through all of this. I am glad see you that your spirits are up! The nurses at UPMC Presby are GREAT!

I see what has happened with you and Roy and THANK GOD EVERY DAY THAT AL HAD SUCH AN EASY RECOVERY!

I think that is why I haven't posted much. While we have had our share of bumps in the road
we had nothing that compares to what you are going through.

You are in my thoughts and prayers daily!! and am glad to see things are getting better.

May God Bless and keep you!

God Bless
Kath

mumphy's picture
mumphy
Posts: 486
Joined: Jun 2009

Thank You, you always know the right thing to say!

God Bless
Kath

Hope_Faith
Posts: 164
Joined: Aug 2009

Yay! What wonderful news regarding your hubby :)
The Lord is so good!
Continuing in prayers and blessings,
Shelly

MOE58's picture
MOE58
Posts: 649
Joined: May 2009

Trish,

See I told you so, that one day he wouldn't be doing good, and then the next he would make a 100% improvement, and that it sounds like he did, Isn't it awesome how we all have become friends and we tell each other here before our family? Your scenrio is exactly the scenrio we had back in july/aug. This is so amazing that mine had open surgery and yours only had the mie, wow thats amazing.

I will say some nurses are great while other nurses are a real you know what, some care some don't.

Don't give up your BGP yet, you might need them in the does ahead, sounds like they are not slipping anymore, and your actions sound so much more calm.

Keep me posted

Love
Lori aka MOE

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