Monday, August 08, 2005

More good news than bad! :O)

After a few downer days, I was glad to hear so much more positive than negative from the Doctor today!

The negative (ain't much):
Still very sick, of course. Critical.
Still trying to control fever (from infection and/or medication)
Lung x-ray looks about the same (not showing improvement).
She's diabetic. This may be caused by becoming permanently diabetic after gestational diabetes, or by the SoluMedrol steroid that she started yesterday. They're starting her on an insulin drip.

The positive:
No more air leak in the lung. They're keeping the chest tube in anyway, because lightning can strike twice as long as she's on a ventilator.
No more acidosis.
Sodium is approaching normal.
Spinal tap results are in, and show no growth of nasty things. No menengitis.
Overall, she's stable.
She's not on a one-to-one care status anymore (she's better enough to warrant sharing a nurse with another patient).
The hospital is trying to procure a special ventilator from City of Hope (as posted yesterday). Specifically, the one they want will show optimal PEEP and help them get Denise healed.

The doctor rightly perceived that I've been concerned (obsessing?) about the oxygen concentration going between small fluctuations, like 55% yesterday morning and going back up to 60% again in the evening. He said that the range they're working in is different than going from 75% to 100%. The 5% fluctuations in this range aren't nearly the concern that larger fluctuations are, and at higher concentrations. It's encouraging to me to have this understanding. Also, I noticed that 2 days ago, Denise was at 55% for only a few hours. Yesterday, she tolerated 55% for over half the day. So I'm hoping that the trend of tolerating lower oxygen for longer periods will continue.

Denise's white blood cell count is down to a normal range. This could mean that the infection is subsiding. Or it could be an effect of the Albecet or SoluMedrol. They can mask & mimic each other.

She's on an IV iron drip. They're going to start her on a weekly Procrit treatment. That's supposed to boost marrow production of blood cells (and get that hemoglobin delivering oxygen to her body better).

Thanks for the incredible support network you all are. I, along with Denise's folks and my folks, are humbled by all the caring words and offers of practical help (oh, yes, I'll be contacting you!). And we're flabbergasted (now THERE'S a word I've always heard but never typed before) at how many people that we don't even know are pulling for my wife.

Finally, there's a waiting game. I've been advised by a few people with medical background that I have to be patient and not get discouraged. At this point in the healing process, we just have to wait & see. Things might not change enough from day to day to be news-worthy. So if I start to skip a day here & there with these updates, don't be alarmed. Make use of that link to receive an email when I post a new update. Send an encouraging email to Denise's hospital room (they print 'em out on decorative paper; I read them all to her and post every one on the wall). Learn more about Valley Fever. I think I'll start to finally respond to all your emails & phone calls. Above all else, please keep Denise in your thoughts & prayers during the coming long haul toward healing.

13 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Denise, Hey girl just to let you know there are so many people pulling for you. You touch so many lives, that's how special you are to us all. Everyones is praying and sending you get well soon messages and prayers.

Love,
Michele & Espie Bellgardt

August 08, 2005 2:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Father,
We just don't understand why,
And so we cry.
But we trust our lives to You
To see us through.
We know, Lord, You never fail,
Though we are frail.
We bow to You and we say,
"Heal Denise, we pray."

With our love and prayers and trusting Father for His best concerning all of the Williams family,
Joel and Kathy

August 08, 2005 2:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Denise,
We're praying for you by the hour! So many of our friends & family are asking for updates and keep praying!
Keep up the good work!
We love you!
The Sayles Family

August 08, 2005 3:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil & Denise, This whole situation is something that happens to someone else...someone in the newspaper or on the news...not someone we know. It's so unbelievable, yet it forces us face reality. We think of you (and pray) every day and cry as we read your updates and hear your struggles. Phil, thank you SO much for your example of how to lean on the Lord and have peace in a seemingly hopeless situation. You are truly an inspiration to us and we constantly pray that God will continue to uphold you. You are both so special and we are so sorry that you are going through this. Our thoughts and prayers are with you every single day. And there are many in our new church (in Tulsa, Ok) who are praying with us. We love you guys!!

Jeremy & Cora

August 08, 2005 8:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The power of God is shining through your fight. You keep fighting and we will keep praying for you and your family.
Ana Flores - Friend of Kristen Reed

August 08, 2005 9:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Williams Family,
There was a time in my life when our son was ran over by a truck and a period of time where we didn't know if he would live or die.It was only my faith that the Lord was in control that got me thru that night.Many people witnessed the accident.And many people(who I did not personally know)came to me later saying they prayed for us.It is those prayers that make it easy to tell you now that I no longer belive in miracles I depend on them!!!

August 08, 2005 10:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil - hang in there. We are praying for Denise and your whole family! Never forget that this is easy for God! He is the great physician! He knows all about what Denise is going through right now - and you too. We'll keep praying.

Julie Small

August 08, 2005 10:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil, You have been in my prayers daily since Rachel Treydte told me about you. Your daily blogs are a blessing to us, helping to know what to pray for. Just a suggestion for Gracie. How about making a tape for mommy? She can sing some of her favorite songs, read her one of her favorite books, or just talk. I bet Denise would love to hear the sound of her precious children's voices. Stay strong in the Lord, you are surrounded with His love.

Jamie Treydte, MO

August 09, 2005 9:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it at all possible for someone to post a picture of Denise for those of us who don't know who were praying for? I'd love to see this beautiful family that I have grown to love.

August 09, 2005 9:23 AM  
Anonymous Sarah said...

I recieved an e-mail from a friend of mine about Denise. Her situation is scary but the Lord will overcome, I will keep y'all in my thoughts and prayers. Get well soon Denise, there are lots of people pulling for you!

August 09, 2005 11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil and Denise:

Our prayers are numerous throughout the day and we are spreading the word for additional prayers.
Our prayer request is for God to surround his Alimighty healing arms around Denise and never let go! Also, to heal her lung and to stop the fever. Little by little, she is slowly making progress -she is a fighter!
We are, also, praying for you, Phil, to keep the faith tucked deep in your heart and that you stay healthy and srtong for your family. I liked how you said you can only do one hour at a time. Be sure you get the rest you need.
Remember if you need us for anything - CALL - we're just up the street!
Denise is making small baby steps. All the progress she has made so far is our assurance of her strength and determination to keep on fighting - so she can retun home to her family.
Denise you are in excellent hands, both inside the hospital and out! I know God has his hand in this situation and is watching over you and your family. Trust Him!
God Bless you all and with our love . . . Trudy, Glenn, Genelle and Garrett Campbell

August 09, 2005 4:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil and Denise:

Our prayers are numerous throughout the day and we are spreading the word for additional prayers.
Our prayer request is for God to surround his Alimighty healing arms around Denise and never let go! Also, to heal her lung and to stop the fever. Little by little, she is slowly making progress -she is a fighter!
We are, also, praying for you, Phil, to keep the faith tucked deep in your heart and that you stay healthy and srtong for your family. I liked how you said you can only do one hour at a time. Be sure you get the rest you need.
Remember if you need us for anything - CALL - we're just up the street!
Denise is making small baby steps. All the progress she has made so far is our assurance of her strength and determination to keep on fighting - so she can retun home to her family.
Denise you are in excellent hands, both inside the hospital and out! I know God has his hand in this situation and is watching over you and your family. Trust Him!
God Bless you all and with our love . . . Trudy, Glenn, Genelle and Garrett Campbell

August 09, 2005 4:39 PM  
Anonymous Dawn Fang- friend of Lynn Rueda said...

O Great Physician,

In the all-powerful name of the Lord Jesus Christ, grant bodily healing to your child Denise and return her whole to her family. Pour out Your love into their lives through a miracle on their behalf. May Your Holy spirit grant supernatural strength, peace and healing as they trust You through this time. Remember your child Denise and her family now.

In Jesus' name,
Amen

August 09, 2005 9:30 PM  

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