Saturday, January 23, 2010

Slow And Steady Wins The Race

Jan. 23, 2010 (Day 6 of intubation)

Okay, There isn't a lot that has changed, (really only meaning that Mark is still intubated and in ICU). What HAS changed is the fact that he is definitely getting a lot better. He is maintaining a much more stable pulse ox and heart rate over all, (though his heart rate increases when he spikes a fever, which the doc told me is a typical side effect of the Campath). His fevers don't tend to ever get too high, I think the highest was around 102 or so, and they don't typically last very long.

They were extremely worried about his kidneys but now have changed their tune and are saying that they're functioning a lot better than they were when he was first intubated (6 days ago). His "output" (i.e peeing) is a LOT better this week; they're giving him Lasix which helps with this process. Also, it helps with relieving some of the fluid that is trapped in his lungs, (had no idea that urinating actually helped fluid filled lungs). While his kidney function isn't "perfect", it's leaps and bounds better than it was last week.

They've got him on a steady stream of sedation, (Fetanyl and they just gave him some Ativan to mellow him out more because he was getting really agitated). Starting about two days ago, they've begun to shut off his sedation to "wake him up" at least once a day but when they see him getting a bit irritable, they interpret that as him being in pain and they put him under again. When the sedation IS shut off however, he does try his damnedest to open his eyes and he DOES listen to you. We consistently have to remind him that he's got a tube in his throat and he can't speak because it's very obvious that A. he's trying to say something, and B. he's really pissed off that he's restrained. We just tell him to relax and rest, and then immediately, he falls asleep again and chills out. The docs want us to keep trying to talk to him, to remind him of where he is, and to remind him that he has a tube in his throat. Because he's had the amnesia medication along with his sedatives, as he awakens, it's understandable that he's agitated, as to him, it's still last week, and his last memory of being awake was fighting with the team that was trying to intubate him. So it makes sense, but what's great is that he definitely listens to us when we tell him to relax, and to just try to open his eyes.

Mark's really good friend Talon got into town on Wednesday and has been with him every day since. He even gave Mark a mani/pedi (for the guys that don't know that I'm talking about: a manicure & pedicure). You think I'm kidding, but his feet look awesome...and so supple. Dino has been nothing short of awesome and has been here every day as well, he claims that Talon was the only one responsible for the manscaping but I still have my suspicions. Dino, Talon and Mark go way way back and have CRAZY stories about the hijinx the three of them caused. Let's just say, they put the "SHE" in SHEnannigans. Oh boys.

Mark's oncologist (Dr. Odenike)has changed his Campath schedule to be every other day now, which is good. He'll be getting the last of his first week of shots tonight around 9pm, we've got a LOOOONG way to go...but you know what? It's okay. I've got to say, I've personally flipped a switch about being patient with Mark's care, (hence the title of this post). I think when we all first learned that Mark was sick, and sick with something like Leukemia, and sick with a Leukemia that is so rare and aggressive, all I wanted was for someone to hurry up and fix my boyfriend. I can't tell you how many times I thought to myself "OKAY, shut up and fix him then!!" My natural impatience has been making this process get the better of me and help to dwindle my reserve. I finally made peace with the fact that this disease is FAST...but his treatment must be slow. I believe that saying "slow and steady wins the race". (It really does). The trick in all of this (for me personally anyway) is for me to keep reminding myself of that. The more time we take in Mark's healing, the more stable and secure and final his eventual remission will be...and it's not going to happen in a month, or two months, or even three months. It's finally okay with me because it has to be.

Mark will beat this, he will get better, he will walk out of this hospital on his own two, (very well groomed) feet...I just have to shut up and be patient.

So as of right now guys and gals, we wait. He's OKAY right now. He IS getting better, but it's just slow. It's a good thing that he's waking up every day, it's a good thing that he listens to you when you tell him to open his eyes. His lungs are still fluid filled, but they're a little better than they were, and for today, right this second, that has to be enough...and it is.

UPDATED BLOOD COUNTS:

JAN 20, 2010
2:00AM
WHITE: 96.9
RED: 3.24
HEMOGLOBIN: 10.3
HEMATACRIT: 31.6
PLATELETS: 126

2:00PM
WHITE: 96.4
RED: 3.10
HEMOGLOBIN: 10
HEMATACRIT: 30.2
PLATELETS: 118

JAN. 21, 2010:
2:00AM
WHITE: 98.1
RED: 3.23
HEMOGLOBIN: 10.1
HEMATACRIT: 31.6
PLATELETS: 134

2:00PM
WHITE: 106.3
RED: 3.03
HEMOGLOBIN: 9
HEMATACRIT: 29
PLATELETS: 132

JAN. 22, 2010:
2:00AM
WHITE: 97.8
RED: 2.96
HEMOGLOBIN: 9.2
HEMATACRIT: 28.7
PLATELETS: 129

2:00PM
WHITE: 108
RED: 2.91
HEMOGLOBIN: 9
HEMATACRIT: 30
PLATELTES: 129

JAN. 23, 2010:
2:00AM
WHITE: 119.2
RED: 2.88
HEMOGLOBIN: 10
HEMATACRIT: 30
PLATELETS: 127

(2PM RESULTS NOT BY YET)
(CAMPATH shot scheduled for tonight at 9:00pm)

Love to all of you,
Leslie

2 comments:

  1. Barbara & Pat Kerrigan ( Mom & Dad )January 23, 2010 at 11:34 PM

    Thank you ever so much for the update Leslie, Keep up what you are doing cause you are being so strong , and Loving to Mark! ! Sounds like Mark has some great friends ! Sweet dreams Leslie and Mark ! Love, Mom & Dad

    ReplyDelete
  2. Mark & Leslie,
    Keep strong.My thoughts go out to you daily.
    Cousin Gretchen

    ReplyDelete