Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Day 21 – What a day !!!!!

Tuesday 29th September 2009

One of the night staff nurses came to flush out the line that had been put into my hand yesterday so I could have the blood transfusion. I nearly hit the ceiling with the pain. She tried it again and the same thing happened.
“Well, there’s blood coming out so it must be clear”, she said.
“Trust me”, I snapped, “ it’s blocked”.

She rang the ICU for advice and they said they would get back to her. In the mean time the antibiotics would use the central line as normal. They finished at midnight and having been given the go ahead by ICU to use the central line for the transfusion, they connected me up.

The blood wouldn’t flowing through the line whilst I was lying down so I had to sit upright all night while the transfusion of two units of blood took place. The use of the central line was finally finished at 8.25am. It had been in constant use for over 11 hours. I was shattered !!!!!!!!

Doctor Zara came to see me just after breakfast and said that I looked a lot brighter than yesterday, thanks to the blood transfusion. At first I found her a bit abrupt but once I’ve got to know her, she was really nice. She always popped into say hello every morning, even if she had no reason to see me.

Had my blood pressure taken at 10am and it was low again. They couldn’t understand why as I had been given some blood. I told them once again that I always had low blood pressure but they weren’t interested.

Lisa, the physio, came to take me for a walk but having looked at my vitals chart, said I couldn’t because of my low blood pressure. I was getting a bit annoyed as I was didn’t feel ill or had any other symptoms which was associated to low blood pressure.

Only one more day and I could have the central line removed. Maureen, one of the auxiliary nurses, had promised to wash my hair as soon as it was removed as I hadn’t been able to have either a shower or hair wash because of my line.

My mam came for afternoon visiting with my Godparents, Geoff and Maureen. They had just arrived when Lisa asked if I would like to go for a walk. I felt a bit silly having an audience whilst I walked but I did manage to walk a lot further than before. Tomorrow Lisa wanted to try me walking using a zimmer without wheels. I was happy with that as it was one more step (no pun intended….) in getting me home.

Norma came to give me some antibiotics but found my central line was blocked. When an IV line gets blocked all they would do was simply flush it with a saline solution. However as it was a central line, they couldn’t because the line was in one of the major veins connected to the heart. They looked at hands and arms but couldn’t find a decent vein. They now had a bit of a dilemma as they didn’t want to put in another central line seeing as it was due to come out tomorrow.

Doctor Zara and a nurse practitioner from ICU came to have a look at my line. It was well blocked. The practitioner decided to try something.
“Oh”, I said,
“What’s the matter”, asked Zara.
“I’ve just had a strange feeling in my chest. It felt just like I had a waterfall flowing”.
“Blood pressure check. NOW”, yelled the practitioner to Zara who dashed off to get a monitor.

“Have you any chest pain? Do you feel clammy? How do you feel in yourself”, asked the practitioner.
“I’m fine”, I said trying to reassure them, “it was just a strange sensation that was all”.
“I want vital signs taken every five minutes for the next hour then every fifteen minutes after that”, ordered the practitioner.

Poor Zara. I really had panicked her.
“I promise you I don’t die on your shift”, I joked.
“You better not”, she laughed, “otherwise Mr Green will have me dangling from a lamp post”.

All the nurses were now making a big fuss over me. Norma came and put her hand on mine and give it a squeeze.
“Are you ok”, she asked.
“I’m fine”.
I kept saying this to people, over and over again and it was starting to annoy me big time. I don’t like people making a fuss so felt like yelling ‘leave me alone. I said I was fine !!!!’.

Half an hour later a calmer Zara popped back to see me.
“You really had us worried”, she said.
She then explained what had happened, “Once we had all calmed down and could think straight, we realised that when the syringe was pulled back, it caused a slight ‘back draft’ which was the sensation you experienced”.

She then said that I was to continue have my blood pressure taken and if I had any pains, or just felt unwell, I had to yell, not buzz, for help.

I told John that evening what had happened with my central line and he thought it was rather amusing.

A little later Christa came in and announced that I was going to be moved to another ward.
“It’s not because of what happened this afternoon”, I asked, thinking they were going to send me to a chest ward.
“No”, she replied, “you don’t need any medical care now, you need rehab”.

She explained that they were getting nine admissions tomorrow and they needed the beds. As I didn’t need any medical attention anymore, I would be moved to ward 42 which was an orthopaedic rehabilitation ward.

A porter would be coming to take me there in half an hour so asked if John could start packing up my things. Norma offered to help so she and John started stuffing things into carrier bags.

Christa said she would go to the ward ahead of us to hand over my notes and to tell them that I needed my blood pressure taken every hour until midnight.

Twenty minutes later she returned. She was not a happy lady.
“They won’t accept you”, she said fuming, “they are not prepared to take your blood pressure”.
“I can’t see that being a problem”, I replied.
“Neither can I. However they say that as you require your pressure to be taken every hour until midnight, that is medical care and they don’t ‘do’ medical care”.

I felt like a bag lady as all my belongings were stashed in a corner of my room. They wouldn’t let me unpack in case they changed their mind at midnight and accept me.

You couldn’t make it up !!!!!!

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