If you’re new to this storyline, my husband was in an accident on July 22. The unfolding is here.
On Wednesday, we got Roger off the pain med Fentanyl. What was gained from this?
- Because delivering Fentanyl requires 2 tubes going into the IV and an additional control cord, as well as a stand that needed to go everywhere with him, the presence of this contraption meant that any movement, like simply putting on a gown, was a complicated project that practically required a spreadsheet to coordinate. Mobility has been regained.
- The narcotic had been taking him away (think Calgon meets Quaaludes). Although he was lucid and able to talk, he was flat. The only way I can describe it is that he wasn’t there. Now his personality was regained.
- No more headaches and nausea.
What was lost? His ability to have pain relief delivered at the touch of the magic green button. A worthwhile trade-off.
It’s still in. The problem is two-fold. First, until this morning, the top of the lung was separating from the pleura, meaning the vacuum seal that makes the lungs work was compromised, there was air in the chest cavity and the lung was still just a little collapsed. Today’s xray showed improvement.
Secondly, while the color of the draining fluid is now very light pink (which is good) the tube will stay in until the volume of the fluid is near 100 ml a day. The most recent check was 400 ml.
If tomorrow’s xray shows a lifted lung, and if tomorrow’s drainage shows not too much more than 100 ml, the docs will clamp the tube for several hours (simulating the absence of the tube, without taking it out yet) to see how Roger’s body responds. Will his body reabsorb the fluid? Or will it begin collecting in the lung?
If the latter, he keeps the tube in another day.
If the former, they’ll pull out the tube (they say it’s painless), play Wait & See for a few hours, and then pack up all the stuff the room has accumulated and come home. With a lot of Percocet.
And maybe something for Roger, too.
Roger just gave himself a sponge bath — guess I’ve been fired. He took a Percocet in anticipation of his first foray off the ward — we are having a date in the cafeteria. He looks very handsome in his gown and nearly full beard, and he’s carrying his own lung bucket. I am wearing the shirt Lollipop Goldstein sent me from BlogHer09 that says, Born To (front) Blog (back).
One of our more memorable Date Nights.