Monday, March 20, 2006

3/20/06 #2

I'll start this post with an interesting email I got today; It said just
"Call out Gouranga be happy!
Gouranga Gouranga Gouranga...
That which brings the highest happiness"
And nothing else. I don't know the sender, or how they got my email address. Nor did I have any clue what it was all about. So I did a search on Gouranga.

I was amused somehow, but extremely happy that it wasn't the longer chain letter version...

Anyway, then I decide to do a blog search on the sender, whose name I didn't recognize. Apparently "Neateye" has made some rounds in the blogosphere...

Well, regardless, I think I'll "call out Gouranga" for a while. I need some easy-to-come-by happiness today. "Why?" you ask... Well let me tell you:

This morning, like I said, we got a wake-up call from the hospital saying that they needed to take Nova back to the operating room in reference to his incision. Well, you can't exactly say no, and I'm afraid that I wasn't entirely sure of even why they needed to go in, or what they needed to do. All I knew for sure was that there was an opening in the incision that needed to be addressed because it was seeping.

I don't want to go into a huge detailed description, but basically, when they did the surgery, the went through the skin, the muscle, and the membrane that encloses the intestines. The body naturally sends extra fluid (via the lymphatic system) to any area that has been damaged. This fluid was accumulating between the muscle and the skin and the pressure it created caused the incision to open, and the fluid was then leaking out. The accumulation of fluid isn't normal, and so they wanted to see what was going on in there, drain the fluid, and repair the incision.

Basically, from what I understand, they opened him back up, cleaned the area, drained the fluid, and resutured the membrane and the muscle but not the skin. Then they put on this weird spongelike bandage which is covered by a sheet of clear tape-ish stuff that has a tube attached to it. Basically, it creates an air tight seal, and the fluid is now being suctioned off of the wound.

It sounds more complicated and serious than it is, but it does put off all conversation (for the umpteenth time) about extubation and/or heart catheterization - at least until NEXT WEEK. Nova has been intubated for 4 weeks today, and I'm really concerned about how hard it will be to get him off the vent. He was showing signs of a fever (though not actually running one yet) and needed some blood products to up his blood volume, and off the lasix - completely knocked out on narcotics, off the feedings, back on the dopamine, and recatheterized.

Despite all that, he was stable, and all his numbers looked pretty good. It just sort of puts us back at square one with his recovery, because now he has to spend a few days just recuperating, and they have to keep him more sedated for the pain. They had just started to really wean him off the fentanyl and versed from the last surgery, and now it's all back up again. They had begun to wean him off the vent pressures, now that's back up again.

The poor guy can't catch a break. And I'm exasperated beyond words. Part of me wants to be angry at the doctors, because that part of me wants to believe that someone is doing something wrong. But the truth is, this shit just happens. His body was so overtaxed from the heart surgery and the possible heart/lung issues that still have to be addressed that it doesn't have the energy to heal or maintain itself the way it normally would - so other things start to go wrong.

I can't take anything else going wrong. I need things to start going right. And damn it, I know that the things that have happened could have been worse, that we're lucky to have nurses who are so caring and vigilant, but damn, you know? He's been through so much, and it's just one thing after another, and he's been through enough.

And to top it off, we got to the hospital and immediately checked into the waiting room. There was some new chick I've never seen before, so I made sure we were on the master list, that she had our names, and we got a beeper so if we needed to leave the waiting room, they could get ahold of us if they needed to. This is their system, and it normally works very very well. So we sat a while, and decided we'd get some breakfast just before 10. We ate and came back and sat and waited and waited and waited... at 11:50 I went up to ask if they'd heard anything. By that time, I'm thinking he'd been in an awful long time for what they said was a simple procedure. There was a crowd at the desk, so I just called upstairs and asked Nova's nurse whether he was out yet.
"Oh, yes ma'am, he's been back here since about 10 o'clock. We called the waiting rooms on the 3rd floor, the 6th floor, even the surgeon went down looking for you. We expected you to be in here at 10!"


When I asked at the desk, the new chick asked me who I was, who my patient was (hullo!?!?!) and what doctor would have been looking for me. I told them that Dr. Bambini had said he'd been to the waiting room looking for me, and that the nurse had called down... so why wasn't I paged?

According to her, no one ever called or came in asking for me. Bullshit. Doctors and nurses don't lie about looking for the family, and they ALWAYS call you up as soon as the patient is out of recovery and back in their bed. For God's sake, Dr. Bambini even called my house looking for me and talked to my mother, so I KNOW that he tried to find me.

So even though Nova was done with surgery before 10, and I could have SEEN him at 10, we didn't see him until noon. Talk about pissed, oh man was I pissed. Hell, I'm STILL pissed.


  1. Hey, how hard can it be to do a heart catherization? Extubation? I think that was the name of one of the enemies faced on Star Trek: The Next Generation. Riker and Picard managed to beat them.
    Look up the procedures on the net, Scotty can do them.

  2. lmfao D! Scotty can't handle the sight of guts and such - he most certainly cannot do it! My kids though, the way they watch those gruesome movies, and me and my medical shows... we might just be able to pull it off D!

    Now all I need are those nifty hats and shoe covers for all of us...

  3. That fuckin' stupid bitch! I guess bouncing her head off her desk probably wouldn't help much . . . I mean, well, some shit you just got to cuss about.

    My love extends to you all, your family, you, Nova, all of you. It always will.

    ~ James

  4. Good grief E! I think I'd have had to beat that stupid chick silly. You have so much grace and control that I find it amazing.

    I'm sorry that Nova's had such a rough time of it over the last month. I'd like to think that he's going to get through all of this and never have another problem for the rest of his life! But we all know he's a trooper- one strong little guy, and he's GOING to pull through this, and soon.

    It would be nice to have someone or something to blame, wouldn't it? I'm sorry that's not available for you. If it helps, you can blame me for something. :) I take blame well.

    Love you E, and kiss that baby for me, ok?

  5. Stacy8:33 AM

    Erin - I've peaking in at Nova's progress everyday. Just wanted you to know good vibes and prayers are coming from California. I also think of your strength everyday and think how lucky your family is to have you. I can't imagine how long this road seems... Take Care

    Stacy (WSE sister)

  6. ERIN! If you need caps, gowns, masks, gloves and booties, I can hook you up! Believe it or not, we use them at work. Yeah, some vets are still neutering cats while holding them airborne by their tails, but not us. :o)

    I realize you'll probably want to hit me if I say "Think positive," so I'm going to throw yet another cliché at you:

    What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

    Nova's gotta be the strongest little dude around. Chin up, girl. I know you are being pushed to your absolute limit and them asked to go another 100 miles, but you are a strong woman and a damn good mother. You can do this...and we are all supporting you.

  7. Yeah, I know just how you feel. I get lied to all the time. LOL sweetie.

  8. Aaarrgh! Stupidity comes in all fashions, I guess. Doesn't excuse it though. At least you know all the love you have out here! :-) Can ya feel it?!! *BIG MARY HUG* We love you guys. The angels are singing, E. It's spring time and I'm...I'm.....being retarded :-P LMAO. I have spring fever and it's raining over here...Anyway, yeah...Love you. Prayers and well wishes always!