Friday, January 16, 2009
Update January 16th
After getting 8 hours of sleep for the first time in TWO WEEKS, we made it to the hospital just in time for rounds. She was still asleep. The doctors gave her an injection to stop the catalyst of the barbituit that had put her down. The doc also then used something to stimulate the brain. She gagged and coughed but opened her eyes. They then tested her feet and hands so we know that she responds to painful stimuli. We were told to wait until 2pm when they would do a CT scan of her head to check for brain damage. The CT showed 4 areas of stroke but they would not go into detail as to what areas of the body would be effected or how large/intensly they would be effected. Right now we are focused on her blood pressure and oxygen level. If the blood pressure is too high, the graft may not hold, but if it is too low, her brain may not get enough nutrients to maybe heal itself. On the oxygen end, as I have now learned, brain damage leads to some funny (meaning sad and horrible) responses in the body. One of these responses is that fluid collects in the lungs. Luckily, they can suchon that out but still she has to be on a highish level of oxygen through her ventilator. The most commonly asked questions I've recieved today are 1) how is her heart? --Great, it beats on its own and the graft is holding. She has more color in her hands, face and feet meaning circulation is up. But they have her on a pacemaker and are pacing her to make her heart beat a bit faster. 65 is a perfectly normal resting rate but they would like her at 80 (circulation to the brain) so they pace her. 2) when will she wake up? --They told me to get worried after three days. Because they cooled her core, it always takes a while 3) The kidneys? -- Her levels are high but still within normal range. As with any surgery patient, she is bloated but they say her output (namely urine) is acceptable and that as of now no dyalisis. 4) What can I do for you? AKA what does Katie and her famliy need (ignore the third person... lol) a) prayer... PLEASE b) well wishes c) understanding when I dont call or write back right away or maybe never d) if you live in STL, my uncle is here. I'll need you to come out later when he cannot be here. This will be a LONG process and I'll need help and support. Other than that, honestly, she may not wake up so if you want to say goodbye just in case, stop on by. (I would say within the next two days) and then anyone is welcome anytime for a visit, food run and/or backrub :-) I will call out for help when I need it so no taking off of school and or work pweeeseee because my mom would HATE that. God forbid someone go out of their way for her. Love you all!!