Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Jim/Venita Update

Jim is doing really well at Select Specialty Hospital. They are getting serious now about rehabbing him because his medical condition is stable. He walked a total of 130 feet today. He had a paracentesis yesterday, and they removed 3 liters of fluid from his belly. He had his first shower in seven weeks today. Yesterday, he was able to tell his internist correctly, for the first time, what year it is. Today he had PT (I haven't gotten the details yet).

Betty goes home tomorrow, leaving us both in a much better place than we were when she got here. At the time she arrived, I was fearful that she might be coming to help me with Jim's "final arrangements."

Yesterday, Jim suggested (because of something an OT said) that he might be coming home Friday. I freaked, because he can't walk independently yet. How would I get him into the house. He also suggested it to his internist, who also freaked, and said NO in no uncertain language. Then the DR sent the case manager into Jim to explain that Friday is NOT a possibility. Thank my stars these folks are on my side. The DR even suggested an interim facility.

On that point, St. Francis Hospital (which is the host hospital for the Select Hospital) has a skilled nursing facility (SNF) in it. I took a wander up there yesterday, and there were no folks in wheelchairs in the halls waiting to die (which was Jim's complaint about Shipley). It is a 35 bed facility, and they seemed to have lots of empty beds. I don't know if they have Medicare beds, which is what we need for Jim. It's on the same floor as the rehab unit, so Jim would have quick access to PT and OT.

As for me, I had radiation 11 today. Friday, I will be half way done (14 of 28). I have a 3rd CT scan of my lungs tomorrow, to check that nasty suspicious spot on my lung. I hope to get a "clean bill," although I would like them to follow me with annual or semi-annual tests. Given I'm a former smoker, with a family history of lung cancer, and knowing that lung cancer is one that really has to be caught early, I would like to have periodic tests.

As for my GP appointment yesterday, the CT scan of my abdomen showed a lesion on my liver and an elevated level in one liver enzyme. The GP wants me to consult my medical oncologist about the findings. However, I noticed that in the report the radiologist compared the current belly scan with the chest scan I had in September. I called the radiology department to find out why he didn't compare the current belly scan to the belly scan I had in June, when I was in the hospital. The clerk there is working on looking into that. Once I get that cleared up, and hopefully get a more accurate report, I will talk with the oncologist.

The report does say, though, that the lesion is too small (4 mm) to characterize but statistically most likely represents a benign lesion such as a hemangioma (whatever that is) or cyst.

So, all is well here. Again, we so thank all of you for following our journey and giving us your support.

1 comment:

Alice said...

Just sending some love your way.