Thu 7/12/2007 7:26 AM
Hey to all,
Sorry, I haven't written in a while, but Dad has kept us busy. He has been in and out of the hospital again. He is currently in today and is getting his feeding tube replaced due to some obstructions and the top plug has fallen off (the hospital nurses lost it last time he was in).
Joan is here and Tom and Matt are coming today for visits. Joan will be here for 2 weeks (her normal help us out summer trip - I won't call it a vacation) and Tom will be here for 4 days. Matt will be staying a bit longer and will go home next friday. Mary is going to have back surgery on the 16th and with Matt staying here with us will free up Tom to focus on Mary and her recovery.
Back to Dad. We took him back into the hospital on Friday, the 6th. He was making the awful gurggling sounds when he took a breath. The Pulmonary doctor has been treating him aggressively and started to have his lungs suctioned on a regular basis. One of his lungs was filled with mucus and had collapsed. The suctioning has helped that alot.
Another issue was that his formula was getting into his lungs. When we feed him, you pour a certain amount of the formula and water directly into his stomach. What is happening is that the fluid is comming back up his throat and the little flap that closeses the lungs isn't working and the fluid goes into the lungs. So the doctor has changed his type of feedings to a feeding pump where he is getting a continuous amount of food (40cc's) an hour and has ordered that his bed be kept in an upright position and he is not to be laid down flat except for very short times.
Oh, my God has this helped tremendously. He is like a different person. In just one day, the change was astounding! His color looks so much better, because of the clear lungs and his ability to process the air without the mucus in the lungs. God, he is such a fighter!! I just don't know where he gets the strength to fight.
The outlook was very gloomy on Monday (his coloring was gray) and the doctor told us that there may be a very good chance that he would never get to go home and that he would have to be in a skilled nursing home for the rest of his life. Then on Tuesday, they said, oh, he will be going home as soon as the G-Tube is changed out(his coloring was a pretty pink)! What a difference a day makes and a change in the way we are feeding him.
So that is how things are going this week. He is supposed to have the surgery today at Noon and it should only take a few minutes, they go into his stomach and pop off the old tube and insert the new one. No cutting is involved. So the recovery will be pretty quick. He does have to be sedated so there is always a chance of things that could go wrong, but I am confident that all will go well. He is such a strong man.
I will let you know when he goes home and how things are progressing. I hope that eveyone had a great 4th of July and a great month ahead.
Love and hugs to all,
Mary, Anna, Joan, Tom, Jerry, Matt, Aaron, and all the pets (Tiger, Hoochie, Lucky, Harley, Daisy, Gus, the fish and The Birds - who have 9 eggs that we think are duds and that the birds are both girls)
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