Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Much better since Saturday

Another day where nothing got worse, most things fairly stable, some things better, some much better! Very cool! She's not is as good a condition as she was before the shut down on Saturday night. But she's improving, and for that we're thankful! Here are the nuts & bolts:

The Xigris seems to be helping Denise fight the sepsis. That' stuff's been a life-saver twice now. We're hoping there will be no complications related to it so that she can benefit from the full regimen of it. It ends about 2pm tomorrow. Kidney function unchanged - still low. But her creatinine is down to 1.7 from 1.9 (we want it to get to 1.0). There's a possiblity that her kidney damage is here to stay and she'll need dialysis for life... or not. To early to tell. But as a buddy put it, dialysis for her life is a fair exchange. Her blood pressure is holding at 103-113 and the blood pressure meds were decreased again (down to 4 mcg/minute). Temperature stayed around 99.8-100 most of the morning, then increased to 101.2 after Ampho B was started... it has a side effect of fever. White cell count is down to 10.4. Again, those two bits of info hopefully indicate that the infections are subsiding. The infectious disease doctor says blood cultures & recent ascites fluid are not growing anything. Chest x-ray is unchanged, oxygen saturation is around 100% on a 40% concentration.
Great news is that her liver enzymes are *dramitically* improved (ALT 79, AST 155... both numbers were many times this earlier). We hope that the liver kicks in and starts working full bore, and real soon.
As far as blood goes, her hemoglobin is 10.2, DIC (that weird bleeding/clotting problem) seems to be improving (as based on a fibrinogen level being essentially normal in the DIC workup). She's got a Swan pulmonary artery catheter (this thing sounds incredible... it's threaded through the chambers of her heart... she had one in the beginning weeks). It shows the pulmonary artery pressure is getting closer to normal, pulse got as low as 106, high as 121... much nicer than those 150s-160s that we were seeing earlier. And her respiration continues to hover around 20 (much better than the 30s-40s that have marked the past two months.
The gastro tube feeding is doing OK so far, after some starts & stops. That would be great if she can continue to tolerate that. We heard that Denise had some vomiting episodes, but the nurse said that there was very little, and she thought it was mostly mucous causing a gag reflex more than anything.

Denise again wrote that she wanted to get into a wheelchair. When told that she has a big ol' Quinton catheter in her femoral artery for dialysis, and that it can't be bent by sitting, she wrote, "What about a walker?" That's my girl. My mother-in-law and my aunt also cut Denise's hair today... with bandage scissors. They don't cut hair as well as what you might find in a salon, nor do my mother-in-law and my aunt.

Correction: In the Monday September 19th entry, I stated that Denise's kidney output was 42-44 ounces per 8 hours. I meant milliliters, not ounces. Big difference. Those of you that are hip to nephrology probably caught my error & knew what I meant. Those of you that aren't probably thought Denise & I were having beer & pretzels or something.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Once again the miracle of the power of prayer is being seen. Lets keep the prayers going and get this family home together where they belong. Thank you dear lord for hearing our prayers.

September 21, 2005 10:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Praise God for this good news! Thank you so much for keeping us updated. Continued prayers for all of you.

September 21, 2005 10:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh what an AWESOME GOD we serve. Thank you Father for Your answers to our prayers. You truly are a LIVING GOD who cares so much for all your children. Thank you for making your miracles real and for today, so that the life of Denise and her struggles will touch those who do not believe. We continue to be upon our faces before You and thank You for all that You are doing for Denise, Phil and the children - In Him there is life - Rose

September 22, 2005 1:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good news! I'm praying!

September 22, 2005 6:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Praising God with you for the improvements! Clearly Denise is a fighter. Thank you God for hearing and answering our pleas. We continue to ask for improvement, even if in small steps.

September 22, 2005 8:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That is awesome news, Phil. God is blessing us all. Get the girl a walker! love that!
terry m.

September 22, 2005 8:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am thanking God everyday when i read the news of her getting better. If she wants to walk get her a walker. She is one strong person. God Bless. Denise Stay Strong!

September 22, 2005 8:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Phil and Denise,

I just got an email from a friend that led me to this site. Please know that I will forward this to prayer warriors in our church family - and I will pray with my sons. Trust in the Lord with all your heart - even when you don't understand. May God grant you peace this day and continue to keep you both (and your children and families)tucked safely beneath His wings. We will pray for the doctors too - and that God would continue to be glorified in this situation.

"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:11

He loves you with an everlasting love.

Love to you Christ.

September 22, 2005 11:50 AM  

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