Saturday, May 21, 2011


This has been a challenging week for my dad and family. Once he received the wrong antibiotic last weekend things have gotten worse. He has developed cellulites on a leg which rendered him almost immobile before coming to the hospital. Once he arrived at the hospital it was quickly decided that he should not leave the bed without assistance, which has made it hard for my mother since she is 5’4” tall and he is around 6’2”. When a man of that stature cannot stand on his own a lady that small does not stand a chance.  

Along with this difficulty he experienced blood problems, a white blood cell count of 800, compared with the normal range of 4,000-10,000 and a platelet count went below 100,000 (normal range is 150,000-450,000. This week alone he has received 2 pints of whole blood and 4 applications of platelets. The doctor said his blood is looking better now, I laughed and said, “Of course it is, it’s someone else’s blood!!”

Blood wise he is doing better, strength wise he is not! Along with this he is acting sort of ‘out of it’ for the lack of a medical term. When he was asked a serious of cognitive review questions Friday he was unable to identify that he was in a hospital, the date, and once he did not identify my mother. Of course this upset her and everyone else in the family but we have to keep in mind that he had a kidney removed a couple years ago which makes the filtering of his blood take much longer than the regular timeframe. Everyone understands it will take longer to filter drugs from his blood, but right now the drugs need to be used, and remove later (but it does not make it any better).

Of course Mother is doing more than anyone should have to do, but she does it (and all the others before her did, and all those that follow her will do it too). This week she has stayed every night at the hospital with Dad and parts of several days. Simple math reveals that she is sleeping less-and-less and becoming less effective at dealing with the situation. Family members stay with him the time she is not there and she returns, but he continues to request that she stay with him at night.  

Friday the clinical team realized he had some higher volume of fluid in his bladder; the next step, a catheter. When I was told this happened I expected the next sentence would be all about his struggling and uneasiness, but instead the nursing team noticed he turned into a more comfortable patient and became a little more cooperative. This completely surprised me but at midnight (about 1hour before writing this post) he was asleep, talked in his sleep while I was on the phone and kept sleeping. Blessing are few and far between, but appreciated.

It is now Saturday morning, which leads me to believe he will be in the hospital at least until Monday.

More to follow.

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