Monday, 23 November 2015

Day eternal of hospital stay: It feels like I'm never leaving.

I've had what everyone keeps calling a 'blip in the road' but it feels a bit more like a giant pothole in the road to me than a blip.

To backtrack, I woke up on Sat with a fever over 38 degrees. Before this, all my fevers have been in the 37 range which caused concern but not outright panic. A fever over 38 makes everyone freak out. They gave me some tylenol and then immediately started me on a broad spectrum antibiotic to combat whatever infection was in my body. And then a team of nurses descended upon me for testing. They drew blood for every possible virus, got samples from everywhere else, and drew more blood samples.

I felt light headed in the morning but after a few hours and a nap, the fever and lightheadedness went away. I was also visited by the on-call doctors from the floor, infectious diseases, and respiratory who all asked the same questions of, was I sure I didn't have an open wound somewhere? Was nothing hurting? Lungs? Heart? Urinating? Bleeding? Bloody stools? They aren't black? You sure? No pain anywhere? A giant rash, perhaps? Itchy? Anything? You sure? Really sure? What's wrong with you!?

Me: I feel ok, only a bit light headed and sleepy!! Ahhhh!!

Nothing really happened on Sunday (yesterday), the doctors returned with their line of questioning and continued with the IV antibiotics. Other than it giving me some diarrhea, I was feeling much better overall.

Today, I'm feeling ok physically but am super frustrated emotionally about this 'blip'.

Gloomy day for my gloomy mood.
This all seems like a pretty big setback as now hematology doesn't want anything to do with me until this is all settled down. The won't do the PET scan right now in case the infection is causing any inflammation in my body which would show up on the scan and could result in false positives. And they also refuse to give me the medication while I'm on an antibiotic for an infection so I'll have to wait this out. 

The good news is that they're pretty sure they determined the site of the infection. As they had drawn blood work to check for infection from my PICC and a secondary site and only my PICC site returned positive, it was clear the infection was somewhere in my PICC line. Everyone felt strongly that the PICC needed to be taken out despite my objections of 'but it's super convenient.' I know it's a scary place to have an infection as the line leads directly to the heart but I don't want to be poked anymore *whinny voice*.

The nurse then had to put in an IV (it took three tries) and now I'll have be poked every time they want blood work (which is all the time). My veins are tiny and scarred and are not prepared for this. If everything remains stable in the next 48 hours, they'll reassess if they should try to put another one back in. It's possible they'll determine that since I'm not on a ton of IV stuff (even though my current antibiotic is every 6 hours), that I can get by with just IV sites until discharge. In my opinion, it would be easier to get a PICC line back in for my cancer treatments though but I'm not sure if they'll want to risk another infection just for that. And honestly, I'm running out of good PICC line sites.

The nurse that pulled out the PICC was new to the floor and undergoing orientation so was super nervous about it. She took it out so slowly, I could feel the tubing moving through my veins. Literally, not like some pop song, I could actually feel it moving through my body one inch at a time. It didn't hurt, it's just a very strange feeling. They sent the last three inches of the line to the lab to be tested to see if they were right about where the infection came from.

I'm so frustrated. I want to go home. This is going to keep me in here for at least another three or four days. I know that really doesn't seem like a lot but it feels a bit every day like the room is getting smaller. I was hoping to get back to Springhill for the Christmas parade on Thursday. Somehow, they're still allowed to throw candy from floats there and I was prepared to take down the children for it. This hospital stay has already taken me away from my Halloween candy (it's still in a box at home), I don't want it to take away my Christmas parade candy too!
The best location the nurse could find.


Faith said...

Yeah, that sucks a lot. I don't have anything else to say other than... it really sucks. And I'll cross my fingers about the parade... maybe you can call the newspaper there and they'll send children over dressed in Christmas sweaters to throw candy at you whilst nurses poke you with needles? Turn the rest of your stay into some kind of Pavlovian adventure.

Poked with needle... KIDS THROW CANDY AT YOU! Poked with another needle... MORE CANDY!!! I bet the nurses would LOVE IT.

Amy Watson said...

Hahaha, i love this idea, Faith!