Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Beginning of the Journey

This is long so only read if you want the details.

I just want to update you all on Gary. He was a pretty sick guy. Good news is he is on the mend. Here is the scoop on his illness.

He had a colonoscopy this summer. He continued to leak fluids from his behind for several weeks. He put up with it for awhile and then decided it was more than colonoscopy residue. We called the doctor to see what was going on. He sent Gary to a colorectal surgeon. There was a fistula (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fistula) found near his colon. So on October 11th he went in for a fistulotomy. The surgery went well and he was on the road to recovery. He was feeling really great. He even did some home repairs around the house on Saturday October 20th. He really was doing well. Then on Friday the 26th he started having body aches, fever, chills, and overall feeling crappy. He thought he had the flu. So he rested, drank liquids, and just took it easy. By Monday he was feeling pretty miserable so he called the doctor and went in for a blood test. His blood work came back with high white blood cell count. She told him if he was still feeling awful that they could go back in to look for infection in the previous surgery. She was going to take him in on Thursday if he wanted the surgery. Well by Tuesday he couldn't take it anymore and called for a surgical appointment. She could take him on Tuesday the 30th. So he had surgery that night and spent the night in the hospital. The stitches had come out of the wound and it was pretty messy. So she fixed it up, restitched it and kept him there for the night. I took him home on Halloween so he could rest at home. On Thursday morning I took him in for another blood draw to see what his blood count was. Somehow this report never made it to the doctor, still not sure where it is. Anyway he continued to decline. He couldn't sit, lay, stand or generally move without pain. I called for stronger pain meds on Friday because he was fighting what we thought was post surgery pain. So he got on stronger meds and seemed to feel a bit better. Saturday went pretty well except he had no appetite and wasn't able to pee. He also wasn't sleeping well. Just couldn't get comfortable, had difficulty rolling in bed, and just not himself. So Sunday he layed on the couch and McKay stayed home with him. When I got home from church he said he was light headed and wanted to take his blood pressure. So we took it and it was very low. Had I looked at his buttocks I would have seen how red, swollen, and tight his right cheek was. But he just didn't think he was that sick. So I called my brother Dave to get his opinion and he told us to go to the ER. Once we got to the ER we were surrounded by medical personnel. They put a pic line in his shoulder and began to pump him with fluids. They tested his blood and ran several tests. His white cell count was extremely high and his blood pressure was extremely low. The blood work also showed that his kidneys had shut down. So they knew something was wrong. They did and EKG to check his heart and a CT scan to see where the infection was. There was an abscess in his bottom running parallel to his rectum. It was banana shape and filled with puss. We had to wait a little while for an operating room. Once we got the room they took him right away. The surgery took about an hour. Dr. Wouldron said it was full of puss. The quantity was about the size of a grapefruit. She isn't sure where the abscess started but is hopeful they got all of the infection and he will recover well. He has an opening on his back side that is about the size of a lime. It will remain open and heal from the inside out. He did have a minor heart attack during the night due to his low blood pressure. He was taken of intubation at about 2:30 and the stomach tube came out about 5:00. When I left him tonight he was sitting up, watching tv, off of almost all the meds except one blood pressure med. We have turned the corner and things are looking good. He will be in recovery for about 6 weeks. I am sure he will be tired of it by then. The good news is he isn't in as much pain and they found the abscess. We are thankful for all your love, prayers, and concern. Family is amazing. My children have been rocks through this whole thing. I have leaned on them a lot the past few weeks. I am sure it will continue in the weeks to come. We are blessed. It could have turned out a lot worse.

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