- Back from Pittsburgh
- January 14th, 2010
So.. I'm back. I'll give you the clinical stuff, but you'll forgive me if I avoid the emotional stuff. I'll talk to my BFFs about it, but I'm not ready to talk about it yet. Most of this is C&P from talking to someone on AIM, because I just don't have it in me to re-write it.
I was able to see April a couple of times, and talk to the nurses and hear what has been told to my family. She's in the cardiothoracic ICU at Presbyterian hospital.
They have here on a million tubes. Her blood is going in and out in two huge tubes, going into her chest. She's got a tracheotomy in, and it looks awful. She's in pain. She struggles to take each breath. She cries when she's awake.
She's swollen from all the fluids they're giving her, and she's so limp on the bed. She can't talk because of the trach.
So, because of the CF, some of the mucus that was originally in her lungs was still in her sinuses, even after the transplant. That fungus infected her lungs, which is what originally landed her in the hospital. The day before New Year's Eve, she went into the ER feeling bad, and landed in ICU. They were afraid she was rejecting her lungs; this is not necessarily bad. It can be dealt with using steroids, and many people live with chronic mild rejection for decades. However, it isn't rejection, but she has pneumonia now as well as the fungus, plus something else they can't identify.
They had her on the ventilator, but when they went in to get a second biopsy, they put her trach in, because the ventilator might damage her vocal chords long-term. Originally they didn't even thing she'd live through NYE, she was so sick. Her heart wasn't pumping oxygenated blood, so they had to put her on a heart/lung bypass machine. So her heart is pumping, but all the blood is being diverted through tubes through each chamber, where it can be oxygenated.
She's on antibiotics to combat the pneumonia. If they gave her steroids without being entirely sure she was rejecting, it would make the infection worse. As it stands, she has a 50-50 shot at surviving.
Now, we wait. We wait and see if she gets the new transplant--she should; all of her other internal organs are OK, despite earlier fears. No brain damage, no damages to her extremities. Now we wait and see if the antibiotics for the pneumonia work, if that's all it is, or if she really does need a new transplant. If so, we're hoping the antibiotics make her strong enough to withstand the surgery. I don't think she's strong enough to survive, as it stands right now. If you made me guess, I couldn't even tell you whether or not I really expect her to live or die. There are just too many uncertainties.
If you believe, please keep her in your prayers. If not, keep her in your thoughts anyway.