Saturday, August 26, 2006

Up-Date on Galatas...75 hours post-op

Up-Date on Norris Galatas...75 hours post-op 8/26/2006
Ward 68...Room #6814

Hey is much better for us. Some of the "old veterans" are up here on Ward 68 and they remember Norris from last year on ward 65. I was so glad to see "Friskie" and I really like nurse Sara and Bigalow. It is the weekend and the regular staff is off so contract staff is here. I was glad Frisk (Friskie to us) was making some overtime. I think I would have cried if we had all new people and we had to go through SICU all over again. Everyone on ward 68 has been kind, professional and has a great sense of humor....first shift especially. 2nd shift is more "quit bothering me or I'm gonna hide that call button"....LOL! But with Amy here and me watching really close, things have been going well. We have only had a few little mishaps up here. Norris got up and walked last night with Friskie and my help...from the bed to the door and back. Then this morning Friskie and Bigalow took him and he went to the "flashing becon" (about 10 yards) and back....and then when the X-ray technician came up our buddy "Carrie" from Physical Therapy stopped by with a walker. She took him all the way down the hall and back (about 50 yards) just as soon as they get some of the drain tubes out so he can go....he'll be walking everywhere and they will be asking "Where is Galatas...he isn't in his room". The docs are talking about maybe removing the Foley catheter tonight....then maybe the NG tube (from his stomach) tomorrow. The NG tube he had came he had to PAINFULLY swallow another one...down his left nostril...he hates that. Anyway, the SICU staff had put a piece of surgical tape on his tube and then on his nose to hold had gotten all sweaty and sticky and "melted" so that the sticky got onto the NG tube ......everytime he touched it or scratched his nose and brushed it, it would stick to his fingers and move just a little....since it never got the "mark" to use as a guide...we could never tell if it was slipping out or not....but I touched it once and the "sticky part" that was under his nose was about nine inches we knew it was slipping. By the time X-Ray made a picture (and we were waiting to see if it showed the NG tube out of position), Norris was practicing "floating his balls" (sucking on the inhaler they gave him to practice deep breathing....) the NG tube stuck to the plastic hose on the device and popped right out on the floor! So, he had to reswallow a new one. This time it is clamped and a guide is marked and our docs used a different kind of tape (like a bandaid) on his nose so it won't melt off if he sweats. Then our other mishap was when we came back from the walk, there was blood on his thighs and gown....when he walked down the hall, the tubing from the JP drains got "scooched" between his legs and the backwards pulling motion pulled and loosened his drain tubes....the site where they are stitched in was bleeding a little. So I cleaned him up and made sure the bleeding stopped, and made a mental note to pin these tubes our of the way next time we go walking. Norris had told Bigalow that he didn't need the oxygen on the walk, so we left it in the room.....after the walk with Carrie he came back "loopy" and at first I just thought it was the pain medicine, but he was trying to talk to me and he was making NO SENSE AT ALL. His eyes kept trying to roll back and he was more unsteady on his feet than before. So after we got him down and all cleaned up and comfortable and Carrie left, I got the nurse to look at him and put the oxygen back on him....and it was OFF anyway! (Wonder how many brain cells we starved to death with that one...LOL!) Then I noticed there was nothing in the NG canister...the suction was OFF, too. After 30 minutes of suction, there was almost 100ml in the canister. Now there is almost 200ml. Glad that didn't have time to build up in his stomach...he may have become nausious and this is very bad! Otherwise it's been good. Amy went back to Mologne House about 10:00 this morning to get some sleep and I got a good ten hours last night. Tomorrow we'll let you all know how many tubes come out or if he can have some nourishment. I never understand how they expect him to get up and walk down the hallways three times a day but there is no protien or fat in the IV...just saline solution. I did ask the doc to ask if there is some reason they don't want him to have any protein or fat in the IV. Walking helps the intestines get to working, so I'm hopeful he will soon have bowel sounds. At least now without the colostomy, he can roll on one side or the other and sleep and get off his back and butt. The beds are state-of-the-art and inflate in different places and at different times to prevent bed sores, but he is still missing a big portion of the right butt cheek, and it is like sitting on your padding. He is trying hard to do everything they have asked him to do. He is a trooper and he is still my hero. No matter what. (Yeah, SICU hates me, but who know how quickly word spreads around a hospital...well, everyone who is involved with Galatas now is all smiles and very patronizing....I hate that too, but at least the X-Ray techs and all the staff have been very patient with him and let him move at his own pace...baths and linen changes have been careful and pain free and no one is jerking on him anymore.) He'll be up and around in no time. Thank you for your e-mails of support... Norris appreciates it that so many of you are ready to come up here and kick some %@!* on his behalf...His brother George is coming Monday....He may do just that. We'll keep you posted...You know, this is beginning to sound not only like the book we are going to write, but maybe even a soap opera....A Soldiers's Courage at least a documentary. Thank you for your prayers and support. God has continued to bless us. (Some of these little mishaps could have been very distressing...even life-threatening....God watches over us and sends us angels to help.) I'm still at Mologne House, so you can keep sending mail to the Room #415 address. Keep praying. Love you all. Janis and Norris at WRAMC


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