Saturday, March 11, 2006

Admitted to hospital, Cocci status? Diflucan toxicity? Hepatitis? Reglan withdrawls?

Denise was admitted to Huntington Hospital yesterday afternoon. We have no idea how long her stay will be. She's in good spirits but has sever pain in her side at times (such as when doctors press on her tummy). Phone number to her bed is 626-535-6732, room 4525. Here are the nuts & bolts of what the specialists said that came to visit her last night.
- Neurologist doesn't suspect she's having seizures, nor that she's bipolar (though will run tests to check). He thought that it's possible she's having withdrawls from Reglan. He'll give her something else and ease her off of it gradually. Again, the Reglan was stopped last Friday in hopes that it would cause the liver enzymes to decrease, which leads us to...
- Hepatologist/GI guy is perplexed. Denise is gaining weight (98.8 pounds... different scale, different clothing than the last weight of 102.5) and she's getting stronger. So why are the liver enzymes out of whack? For you hepatologically hip people, SGOT is 94 (down from 117), SGPT 216 (down from 226), AlkPhos 411 (up from 379). They're going to do a blood workup, hepatitis test, and if they can't figure out what's going on, resort to a needle-drawn biopsy of the liver itself.
- Infectious disease doctor didn't have much to say that we wanted to hear. One possibility is that Denise is not tolerating the Diflucan (anti-fungal) med very well, and that's not an infrequent problem. Another possibility is that the presenting symptoms Denise has could signal a progression of the cocci infection, perhaps in the liver or even the brain (though the neurologist eased our concerns a bit), but he's puzzled as to why she's doing so much better otherwise. His plan is to start from square one and reassess the status of the cocci infection. So Denise will have an MRI of the brain, a spinal tap, blood check for cocci, and do the aforementioned liver biopsy if needed. He's also going to look into holding off on the Diflucan and switching back to V-fend (voriconazole) as the anti-fungal med. There aren't too many choices when it comes to medication that's effective against cocci. He also mentioned the possibility of hepatitis and asked if Denise had had any blood transfusions. Uh... yes, a whole bunch of them. The chance of hepatitis is remote since the blood units are screened. My understanding is that much more can be done about hepatitis now than in years past, so that's of some consolation, if it comes to that point.

From the "funny, as long as you're not the one paying for it" department: Denise was up until the wee hours of Friday morning at the nursing home, ordering from the shopping channel. Then she went to her room and decorated the styrofoam heads under each of her four wigs. The total of the orders made the Avon order from the other day look like a small sum. She remembered ordering, but can't remember the names of the companies, most of what she ordered, nor what exactly the totals were. So I checked through her cell phone log to find the numbers dialed between midnight and 5 am and called to cancel (or at least find out how to return) all the orders. I'm hiding the credit card & ATM card, and I'll be hanging on to her cell phone for a while. We talked and she's agreed to circle anything she wants from catalogs, and then later we'll go through again to prioritize, whittle down, and order things she really wants together. On the bright side, now I have a great list of gift ideas for her birthday. I drowned my financial sorrows this morning by ordering breakfast from Tommy's. I tried their breakfast sandwich... picture an Egg McMuffin with Tommy's chili, tomato, onion, and pickle added. What was I thinking?

On a tragic note, I saw one of my eighth-grade students in the hospital cafeteria, and later outside the pediatric unit (just down the hall from Denise's room). His ten-year-old cousin was hit by a car on Wednesday night. Last night's CT scan showed no brain activity and he was not expected to make it. There aren't words that can adequately describe what the parents were (and are) going through.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the update, Phil. I've been on pins and needles since your post yesterday, wondering how things were going. I'm glad they're pretty good and now with these details I'll know how to pray better for Denise. Take care!

March 11, 2006 10:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for letting us know about what's up. I'm sure that you are pretty overwhelemed again. Take a deep breath and remember that He's on your side!
Love, Rachel

March 11, 2006 4:58 PM  

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