Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy Halloween (Monday, October 31, 2011)

Today started out rough again. After the doctors did rounds he became restless and angry. He couldn't get comfortable. He wanted the pillow under his head and then out and then in and out. We do this many times a day, but more in the early morning and late at night. He kept wanting to get up and get dressed and wants them to take the catheter out. He was complaining about all the tubes and how bad his neck hurt. He then started to say that no one up here was helping him and he should just go home because it would be the same. Then he kept saying, "I think they keep getting all these tubes and needles out of happy meals." (This is one of those out of the blue statements he makes) I told him that he was getting good care and that we had to stay so they could help him. He was really just angry and frustrated. Once he settled down he began to have a more normal day (not that normal really exists up here). He was able to help occupational therapy give himself a bath and then he walked longer than he has yet, which was really good. Then a doctor from Radiology came in and said they would be taking him down to do a blood patch and an angiogram. After they pulled the lumbar drain out of his back his headaches got worse so they suspected that he had a spinal leak, which causes very bad headaches. (Billy has had a headache since the rupture and they said he will have one for at least 14-21 days, but the spinal headache is much worse and more intense) So for a blood patch they put a needle into his back very close to where the drain had been. Then they draw blood from his arm and inject it into his back. The blood acts like a patch until the body has time to heal the hole. Usually this works very quickly. After the blood patch they did an angiogram to see if he was having any vasospasms. For an angiogram they place a catheter in the upper thigh and then inject dye so they can see all the vessels in his head. During the angiogram they could see that Billy was having mild vasospasms, but they didn't think it was bad enough to treat at the time. It is very likely that Billy will have more angiograms. Depending on many factors it could be everyday, every other day or even 5 to 6 days in between. Again, there is no magic number. After he got back from these two procedures he was in pretty good spirits and the pain was better.

I had already promised the kids I would be home for Halloween so I could go Trick or Treating with them. Billy's dad had volunteered to stay the night. I left about an hour before his dad got here and he took a nap. Bob, Billy's dad, called me around 8:30 and said he just wanted me to know he was having a hard night. He was hurting pretty bad and couldn't get comfortable. This lasted for a couple of hours until finally around 10:30 he went to sleep and slept pretty well.

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