Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Tuesday Update

I haven't updated in a couple of days because there hasn't been any new news. Bill is still at Scott & White in Temple. Yesterday tests were run to verify that he was ready to be transferred, and Ruth was told that a room was available. The results weren't back until today, though, and by the time the results came back that he was good to go to the longer term rehab facility, they had already filled the room. So, it's back to the waiting game.

They have also found 3 blood clots, for which we do not know the source (I don't know if the doctors have any ideas or not, but I'm now twice removed from all the news as Phil gets it from Ruth, then I get it, so don't always know if I'm getting all the details). They are taking him off of blood thinner now. The tests they ran showed that there was some minimal brain damage, HOWEVER, they said they could tell this was old brain damage that had been there for some time. We think this makes sense as he has over the years become slower at understanding what we are talking about. We attributed it mainly to hearing loss, but this coupled with the hearing loss would explain his comprehension of things. His blood pressure today was up & down again.

I talked to a friend today who is a nurse. Actually, I asked her the other day some questions about the trach tube. She asked if he had a tracheostomy or a tracheotomy. I have no idea! She said with the "ostomy" the tube can be removed, but with the "otomy" it's permanent. She told me that the sooner they can wean him off the ventilator, the greater the chance for him to not need the trach permanently. Today I told her that Phil's greatest concern is that Bill is "not responsive." She said it is normal to keep them sedated with the ventilator and the trach tube to keep the patient from bothering it. She also said that when the nurses look for "response" it is not the open eyes and such, but they have places they touch the muscles to see if there is response to that. They open the eyes and check the pupils. So, it seems that him being sedated is normal. That doesn't sit well with Phil, though. This is the one thing that seems to bother him most about his dad's condition.

Ruth would REALLY like for people to visit her & Bill in the hospital. She has asked Phil to call her at her hotel room to save time on her cell phone. I just found an 800 # you can call to try to reach ICU. They can take a phone to Ruth in the room. It is 800-792-3710. If that doesn't work, the main number is 254-724-2111. You can e-mail me at cheflag@satx.rr.com for her cell phone number or her hotel number.

Please keep praying. Thank you!

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