So another day of progess for Carol, her pain seems to be getting much better. Yet an emotional day. I have been not posting on many of the details the last week or so. I have been losing my confidence in the plastic surgeon involved with Carol a bit, but been biting my tongue, for a few reasons. This is why I have been really pushing for Harborview this week. She is going there on Tuesday. She will be in one of th 8 burn unit beds...thanks to all the swedish docs and harbor view who are making this happen. Her plastic surgeon at swedish may be great....but when he tells you he is the only person who would take the case a weeks ago..it doesn't bolster confidence. I do however get that swedish doesn't have in house plastic surgeons, and if I was in private practice and a p. surgeon.....this would be the furthest thing I would want to do. That being I said I thank him for his work, but I really want another set of eyes to look at her. He may be good, but let's just say his bedside isn't the best. Plus all week he has been.."if we were at harborview we could do hyperbaric, and put her in a special bath to clean the wounds, and all the tools I need would just be there, etc. etc." So why not have her there. The politics in medicine in the US is a joke, maybe the world. The freaking special bath and bed is across the street, just send her to it. Across the freaking street.....pisses me off. The patient part of healthcare here get's overlooked sometimes due to peoples ego's and what not. Patient care should always be easy....if you are the responsible doctor(s), what would you do with your mom or kid....do that.
Anywho....I can't remember if I have talked much about her grafting situation. Well early in the week in the wee hours of the night/morning...Dr. Luu (the aforementioned plastic surgeon) had a talk to me about her needed skin grafting. So she needs alot of it. They only put alloderm on her right leg and ran out. Alloderm is good for growing the dermal layer only of skin, not your epidermis (outer layer). Only your own skin will work for epidermal grafting. Cutting edge technology is out there for tissue engineering your own epidermis, but the technology is still it's infancy, and is reserved for patients that have no other skin to take, mostly due to costs, and time needed to harvest it. That decision was made for me about the cost of procedure to grow it...thanks Dr. Luu. I personally would like all the options presented to me no matter how experimental, and let me decide if I can afford it.
So she needs alot of skin. Enough to cover both legs, hips, and a decent amount of the right and left arm. That leaves the only undebrided areas, as harvest areas for grafting. Her back, chest, and scalp. So now, her legs will be scarred forever, her arms will be scarred forever, and even though her back chest, and head (not letting them do the head) are fine now, will be scarred forever too. Try explaining that to your significant other in the kind of state Carol is in. So I hummed over most of the week, and last night Carol and I finally discussed it. It went as expected, pretty emotional. I think even though her hair would grow back and cover all scarring there, losing her hair too would be just too much..mentally. It's up to her though. It sucks, because in time all of this could heal without grafting. But would take like 6 months or more, at least that is what Dr. Luu told me. That is long time of pain, and chance of infection. I am not an expert on this, but the research I have done, it seems correct.
Spent sometime with Chloe and Carol at the hospital tonight. Went very well.
So hopefully that catches everyone up on the more serious details of the week. later