Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sunday, 19 Nov. 2009

Dad did great today. He was aware and alert, able to communicate to people what he wanted (for the most part) when he wanted it.

As yesterday, Dad mostly used his face and hands to communicate what he wanted. Mom had even more trouble understanding him today, but eventually the message got through. He was able to sit in the chair for an hour, almost an hour and a half, but he got dizzy and had to leave it a bit early. Still, he hadn't sat in the chair for a few days, so it was understandable. Once he got back in bed he was fine, vitals steady and normal, face no longer flushed.

Dad kept asking Mom when he would be coming home, and she suggested three weeks (she still thinks he won't remember most of what she says) but when he kept pressing the matter, Mom realized he would remember what she said at least for the day. When she found out that Dr. Wang was coming tomorrow to visit and talk to Dad, she then only said that Dr. Wang would tell both of them when he could go home. Dad was actually happy with that.

Dad then kicked us out (actually managing to say "Go home" in very hoarse tones) about two o'clock when he found out it would be raining later today, and that it might hit us on the drive home. We didn't dare argue with him in case we agitated him.

Mom's going to go up early tomorrow, since Dr. Wang was said to get their at about eight o'clock. We'll find out more then, I hope.

- Kim

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Saturday, 28 Nov. 2009

Yesterday Dad had a down slide after about a week of steady days. He was pushed a bit too much, and actually went into a relapse, including respiratory failure. He’d had to wear the Bi-PAP again, and was unaware of Mom completely.


Today, Dad’s much better. He only has an oxygen mask on, and he knew Mom on sight. He beckoned her into the room too soon; they were just redressing his bandages, and she wasn’t supposed to be there. When she could go in, he held on tight to her hands.

Dad’s on his way to getting better now.... Though we’re still not sure exactly what that means. I’m wondering how much harder it will be then we think.

- Kim

Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday, 23 Nov. 2009

Today is Mom and Dad's anniversary. Happy Anniversary!!! ^-^

Dad's breathing tube was taken out, and he seems to be doing fine. They replaced the temporary pace maker with another temporary pace maker in fear of infection, but also just in case he doesn't need a permanent one. They're still fifty-fifty on that one.

Yesterday Mom had promised Dad she'd spend the night in the waiting room, and check up on him periodically. Today he told her (hoarsely) to "Go home" and I think it was because she appears so tired now-a-days. She also said he remembers the heart attack and the ambulance ride, but its still a bit fuzzy, and other things are off-kilter. He did ask to return to "our Valley" and she asked him if he wanted to be transfered. He said, "Yeah." She told him he had to get all the rest of the wires and whatnot out of him first, and that she was hoping he would be able to walk out of that hospital, which meant he was going to have to wait a bit. She also explained about how other hospitals had been unwilling to take him since he was such a high risk, but this hospital had. He mumbled something like agreement, probably his famed, "Okay."

That's everything for today.

- Kim

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunday, 22 Nov. 2009

Dad sat in the chair for nearly four hours today. He dozed off a bit during that time, but did pretty well according to his nurse. He was moving his arms alright, and was even twitching his legs a bit, knocking them off the foot rest. When the nurse said to help her pull it back up, he strained his musle to lift; she was happy because yesterday he didn't really move his legs at all.

He wore his glasses of a time, and looked around at things. He still wants to come home, of course, but he seemed less agitated today. He did keep gesturing at the restraints, giving us looks like "Well, why aren't you taking them off already?" Mom lectured him about needing the restraints, because he would pull the things out of his body. Dad kind of shrug/nodded in agreement, as if saying "What else would I do, leave them in?"

He still has the breathing tube, they're slowly tapering him off that; they might take it out tomorrow, but we'll see. Dr. Wang is still impressed with Dad, and so are other people of the staff who worked on Dad during his surgery.

That two weeks to get home looks more and more promising. Now we just have to wait and seen, and watch Dad work his magic.

- Kim

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Saturday, 21 Nov. 2009

Dad's awake and doing well. Mom mentioned a convoluted a couple of conversations Dad had today, though he still has feeding and breathing tubes down his throat. The doctors did mention the tubes might come out tomorrow, though.

The doctor couldn't lip read, but Mom translated for him. Dad wanted to know when he could go home. The doctor said something like, "Maybe in two weeks." Wow, but we'll see.

Mom also mentioned that Dad doesn't like the doctor. When she asked, "Because he won't let you go home?" Dad nodded his agreement.

But Dad got to sit up in a chair for an hour and a half; hour and half, that's great. It's the most he's done in nearly a month. Mom says the doctor's are mostly concerned about his bed sores than about anything else. I asked about his lungs, but I guess we won't know until we take the tubes out tomorrow.

Dr. Wang had half expected Dad to need a pace maker, but when they took the temporary one out, Dad's heart worked fine on its own; its HR was in the high sixties and seventies, which shocked the doctor somewhat. I'm thinking they'll do the same tomorrow with his lungs, test to see how well he breaths on his own.

I think that's all for today. Tomorrow I'll be going to see Dad myself, so it probably won't be 'til late or the next day that I post something. There's no internet down there. *tear* I know.... ^-^

- Kim

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday, 20 Nov. 2009

Yesterday, Dad had his second heart surgery to repair, not replace, his mitral valve.

It began at 11:05am, and ended at 10:20pm. From seven hours of surgery (the first time) to eleven hours (the second), Dad has proven to be a miracle man yet again. Dr. Wang, the heart surgeon who worked on Dad, was tired but well pleased. He mentioned that he went back in a couple of times to be absolutely certain that the heart value looked right to him. That took another couple of hours right there.

Mom and Aunt Sandi saw him late last night, some two hours after surgery. Just as before, his limbs were swollen with blood flow, but this time it made him look normal. His color was good because of this as well, and both of them agreed he looked like Dad again.

Just a moment ago, we got word from Mom. She'd arrived at the hospital, and Dad knew who she was. That was all she said, and she hasn't answered any calls yet.

That's all I got, though I might be on later with more information.

- Kim

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thursday, 12 Nov. 2009

Oiy. I apologize for not updating, and I realize (unexpectedly, truth be told) that my non-updating has actually worried people.

My only explainations are that my laptop has been giving me technical difficulties, and I was only willing to power it up for required school assignments. Which have just recently begun to pile up on me... >.<

Anyway, Dad's had some relapses. I say that in the pulural becaue I mean that in the plural. After his panic attack, followed by his possible appendicitis (which proved only to be gas, by-the-by), Dad got out of ICU (somewhat too early). Before I explain that, I will mention some more uplifting things.

Dad always knew who we were at this point in time, and was able to respond to teasing. He was also a bit more aware of his situation. Mom told me that when Dad's friend, Kevin, was visiting, she mentioned getting him better and getting him home, but he shook his head, and circled his chest with his thumb. Mom asked him if he wanted the (second) surgery before going home, and he nodded, saying, "I want it done." Hah, that's Dad. Nevermind the increased risk factors, let's get it all over and done with now.

Shortly after this, unfortunately, things began to imply that Dad might actually know what he was talking about better than the doctors. Hmm.... It is his body after all......

Mom and I visited him on Sunday, off and on in between doing the chores ususally left to Dad (meaning, chores we weren't entirely sure how to do). We saw him about noon, and though he was a bit grumpy, he was alright, not completely there, but coherent enough. This was the day he was taken out of ICU, something that surprised all of us.

Later, Dad wasn't doing so well. Mom and I visited him, with Tracey meeting up with us a short bit later. Grandma and Grandpa were there already, so we had to juggle the hospital tags around.... (@.@)

So, Grandpa comes down and I enter the room, Mom and Grandpa already present. As we stand there, Dad's not doing well at all. His vitals are down, he appears "loopy" and a bit panicked, his breathing shallow and labored. What happened is unclear, the only people in the room being Grandma and Grandpa, who say that it was because Dad's roommate was going home that got him upset. Considering his earlier statement of wanting the second surgery first, maybe this did upset him. Or perhaps something happened that Grandma and Grandpa missed.

In either case, Mom asked Grandma if she called a nurse, to which Grandma responded in the negative. Mom got the nurses, who started coming in and out of the room in increasing numbers. Grandma had to leave, which allowed Tracey to come up to the room, and we were there when Dad was transported to a different room that had better (more in-depth) monitors. They got him calmed down, and he fell into a deep sleep. They also gave him some sedatives to keep him out the rest of the night.

The next day, Dad was back in ICU. This day wasn't so good, but the next was better, even though he choked on the chicken and wouldn't eat anymore. Mom reported that the chicken was rubbery. She asked the nurse if she could cook something for him and bring it in; the nurse said it was okay.

Mom brought the meatloaf and rice Dad requested in time for lunch, only to find Dad in a drug-induced sleep, and to learn that he had had a bad night. This was Wednesday.

Right now, Thursday evening, Dad remains under sedation, and is being considered for transport to USC again, to have his surgery soon.

The problems he is facing that lead to this are: his lungs are filling with blood, but they cannot be drained because he was given blood-thinners to help with his heart. The deterioration in his heart has progressed further, the implication being {perhaps nearly?} too far. And he has developed pneumonia again.

His chances, as he stands now, are low, of course. Surviving without the surgery, survivng the surgery, surviving after the surgery.... They're all high-risk factors, making the doctors unwilling to undertake the task.

We don't know what's going to happen next, or when. The Antelope Valley Hospital doctors are trying to find USC doctors willing to take Dad on, but so far no good.

One last note: I'm not sure when, I lose track of things especially given the time gap (I haven't written notes for this since the first few entries) but Dad now has most of his lines back in; catheter, IV, BiPAP, feeding tube down his nose, drug (er, sedation) lines... They're all back. *sigh* He's got restraints on his wrists, but most of the time the nurses don't tie them down since Mom or someone is there to yell at him (er, direct him in firm tones) to not pull things off/out. So that's something...

I believe that is the lastest of "Dad in the Hospital". I'm not sure when I'm going to update again; I'll seriously try to not leave a gap like this, but between the computer not turning on every time and the homework rush, I'll just say.... When there's something big/solid/etc., I'll post it.

- Kim

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Tuesday, 3 Nov. 2009

Today's Steph's birthday; tomorrow's mine. Both of us aren't particularly over joyed about this.

Yesterday Dad was moved from Kindred Hospital in Cover City to an elderly clinic in Lancaster, down where we live. I obstain from posting things about Kindred Hospital because this is a public blog, and I don't want to cause trouble--until Mom has a chance to do it properly. Suffice it to say, Dad was not getting the treatment he needed, and Mom (angry and upset, but cooly dangerous with it) insisted on him being moved.

The drive took three hours, and tired Dad out. Mom got a call this morning right before I went to class, and was asked if anyone had told her how severe Dad was. She described the valve, the chances given, and reiterated how USC Hospital kept saying they were sending him [to Kindred] to get stronger so he can come back and have his surgery. The response: "No one really told you how severe he was, then?" Mom agreed with a question in her tone.

Dad is still critical, he is not doing as well as we'd allow ourselves to think, and {Ken?} on the phone said he'd never seen anyone so young in such critical condition. Mom was asked some relevant questions, and then notified of some tests they wanted to do. She agreed, of course.

That was before class. When I came home, nearly two hours late due to school and need of gas, Steph greeted me with the news that Dad could have appendicitis, and that he might need surgery (to remove his appendix). If he needs it, the surgery could take place today at its soonest.

The doctor told Mom that if Dad needs this surgery, he might (more like probably) won't survive it. He is still weak, and at Kindred, nothing was done to improve his chances.

That's all I've heard so far. I will update this again once I know if he is going into surgery or not.

- Kim

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Sunday, 1 Nov. 2009

{Today marks the fifth week Dad's been in a hospital.}

Sorry for not keeping up to date; life's just full of twists, turns, and tumbles it loves making you dodge. So, Dad is no longer at USC Univresity Hospital; he is now at Kindred Care Hospital in Cover City (I think... the hospital is the right name, anyway). He was moved Friday afternoon and has been there three days now.

By all accounts, the fact that he was able to be moved proves he is getting better. Friday, once the drugs wore off a bit after his dinner, Dad was able to get all the way through the alphabet. Might seem odd, but Mom was moved to tears. Dad couldn't figure out why.... ^-^

While his first day at Kindred did not go well in the slightest, Mom says they are treating him prefectly fine now, though I am unclear to the details of this care. She's been going early every day, and Dad's even asked her to stay [the night] with her, but Mom knew she couldn't do that. I'm sure the staff wouldn't have let her, anyway.

Dad still has an IV in his arm, but only sometimes has to use the oxygen tube (in his nose), and can go potty (both) on his own--in a canteen or bedpan, though. He still can't walk, but he has stood for a few minutes on his own. He's always asking, "When can I go home?"   Same old Dad.

That's about all there is to update. I'll try to keep up better, but I promise nothing (school's starting to kick into gear as finals and essays are coming up). *sigh*

- Kim

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