I haven’t had time to post anything endometriosis related to round out what I wished would be coming into the end of an exciting Endometriosis Awareness Month. Even my Tweets, what limited quantity they have been, have not focused on endo. No, I’ve been entrenched in the world of blood clot and pulmonary thrombolytics; of heparin and TPA. I’ve been subject to the strange hours of the Cardiovascular ICU and it’s odd patient visiting hours, and the 30 minute drive to my house from the hospital which I’ve made back and forth every day this week! I’ve been grazing on drive-through meals or cafeteria food, or something out of a bag we bought at Walgreens. And I’ve had to sign consent forms for procedures and surgeries and hold crying hands. And I’m mentally exhausted. I can’t even fathom that it’s actually Friday because this week has gone by in such a blur.
Monday: I took my sister to the emergency room because her arm was swollen and black and blue. She has factor 5 blood disease, which is a blood clotting disorder and so I knew her history. It turned out that, yes, she did have a blood clot. It was snug tight between a rib and her collar bone. She was admitted to the hospital.
Tuesday: I called off work and came to the hospital because my sister was having a venogram with thrombocytic therapy. They put a iodine contrast into the artery to visualize the clot and then threaded a catheter and release a balloon right by the clot. This bathed the clot in TPA bloot clot dissolving medicine.
Wed: Called off of work and came in again because they were supposed to take her in for a recheck. They wouldn’t let her eat since midnight and she was already in Cardiovascular ICU at this point. At 6:00 pm they informed us that they had had an emergency case run too long and they would get to her the next day. My sister was livid since she hadn’t eaten all day.
Thursday: They went in and did her recheck and determined to give it another day. My sister was not happy, this meant more time in the ICU and more time with her hand all wrapped up with the painful catheter in it.
Friday: They took her in this mid-afternoon and we thought they had got it! The doc came out and said the clot was gone and she only had a couple small ones in her arm left which the warfarin she’ll take at home will take of. Then I waited for 45 minutes and still my sister was never wheeled out so I had a nurse go and check. Then my sisters nurse came to talk to me and said they had had a hard time keeping the bleeding in check (something that can happen when they take those catheters out and you’ve been on blood thinners). So I wait another 30 minutes and then the doctors comes out again! He says he’s concerned the artery they did the angioplasty (they put a balloon in the artery she had the clot in because it was narrow and dilated it) in has renarrowed. He’s ordering an ultrasound. She is then wheeled out in a few minutes and we head up to ICU. I have to wait outside while they get her sorted out. I go to the bathroom and by the time I get back into ICU, they have the ultrasound in there. They do the ultrasound, give the report to the doctor right then and there, and I guess he needed to go back in. They are putting the catheter back in (she is not happy about this as it is extremely painful and uncomfortable) and putting her back on the TPA. She is so not happy. Of course, when they had taken the catheter out this afternoon they had told her she’d move out of ICU, now she won’t be able to. She’ll be in the whole weekend and into next week in ICU.
She’s still in right now having the procedure done. She’s been in for a while and I hope everything is going ok.