Today is the start of the 3rd week. In fact it is very close to the time Carol was put here in the ICU. I have written and not posted todays entry at least 4 times. Tough day for me.....one of the toughest so far.
Carol did well today. Very sedated and sleepy, heart rate and temp stayed mostly down, although at 1 point she was up to 102 again. She feels normal now.
The doctors all had a big pow wow today to discuss where we go from here. She has not done well in the breathing trials the last couple days. She was expected to do better. Her sedation has to be lowerd during the trials. Carol becomes noticeably upset, and either in pain (albeit they are not lowering her pain med, just her sedation) or very uncomfortable, or upset that she can't move well. Seeing her the last couple days, I am feeling that she isn't in pain but uncomfortable and confused as to why she can't lift her self up out of bed. The doctors are afraid she is having pain. We are both speculating at this point. She is pretty maxed out on her current pain medication, so they are switching her again to another tonight/tomorrow. So essentially the trouble is that she is not waking up enough to breath on her own, becuase she is on too much pain medication. It supresses her breathing. So it was decided and I agreed, that tomorrow the breathing tube will be taken out and a tracheotomy will be placed. That should allow for many things, and hopefully be more comfortable for Carol. Plus it may allow her to mouth words.
So to the lame stuff of the day. I am going to say I few things that are a little hard to hear. This is how much of the family get's the news, so I must. Well, if in fact she is in alot pain. Why, where. Those are the questions. All the doctors did a thorough examination of Carol's skin, hands, arms, legs, feet. Her left hand is actuually warmer now, and although looks crazy, is getting blood flow now somehow it seems. All of her skin is healing well, except on her calves (the back side).... Her feet are very cold now, and they haven't been able to hear arterial blood flow sounds in them for awhile. Although to me, heath, and several nurses, like I've been saying for the past couple days, look pinker. But, there is a pretty clear line just above both ankles where the skin looks normal, and then darkens in color. The doctors are speculating that this may be where her source of pain is coming from or the calves. The vascular surgeon said " I am confident the feet will not be viable when all this over". So they want to take them.....tentatively on Thursday. I've got second and third opinions coming in, as we speak. But my general feeling is that it is not time for that. Of course I asked why now, why not wait. The answer is that if any of the stuff on her calves and feet spread upwards, the knees could get involved. Sparring the knees is a much better deal prosthetically...i guess. Also, afraid of further infection spreading to the body from the calves. Her white count has remained at 17 for the last few days, for those who want to know. So yeah....this crap is getting a little harder.....big decisions have to be made. I was hoping we wouldn't have to make any of these decisions quite yet. They are not really presenting as a decision I should say. We are really hoping to wait and let it play out abit. I don't think I am going to let them yet. Sorry for telling it like it is...it's therapeutic.