Monday, August 11, 2008

The Tale of a Morphine Shot

There are certain things in life that you can't see yourself ever experiencing, until you actually do it. Take, for example, not eating, not drinking, and not being hungry but not nauseous either. My SIL recently went through a month long process by which she did neither, post pancreatitis. I never thought that would be possible for a D.(I love my Diet Coke) The stomach needs its food.

Until last Thursday.

It started at 11 AM prompt,abdominal pains that came in waves + as expected, necessitating much time spent in a certain small room. But there was something weird about this was severely constipating and 2 hours later, when was over, there was still pain. No appetite. By 5:30, I thought it prudent to go to the ER, its not the dierrea that concerned me, it was the lack of dierrea. Nothing is budging. My gut, with the exception of the odd stomach bug, is a healthy surgeries, diseases, or other issues down there but this is weird + the pain is not getting any better. It's pretty busy that night and the PA on duty just thinks I've got the local bug(or whatever), it's rather difficult to make her understand its not the dierrea, its the now lack of it, that concerns me. Thankfully, there is an MD over her...who comes in, pokes around on my belly,and decides I need a CAT scan. Blood work comes back, white blood cells are high. Start antibiotics, move me to another part of the ER.
3 hours pass, get through the CAT scan, watch the final episode of "Hopkins" + hope I'm not going there. At 1 AM prompt, two doctors(never a good sign) march into my room with the results and inform me of a bowel intussusception, I need to be admitted and possibly have surgery. The nurse on duty that morning, seems a little different when it comes to D care-she's taking bgs every couple of hours(very overkill compared to everyone else in the hospital) she has a daughter on the pump. She "gets it" and informs the surgeon I can't go off my pump. She freakin' rocked.(would be that she could be cloned)
3:30 am, I'm admitted. I don't sleep and at 5:30 am the other side of the room starts to stir. Tries to get out of bed, pulls out catheter, etc. In general, is a busy girl for the nex two hours. Alarms keep going off, nurses keep coming in and at one point she engages me in conversation. I tell her she could ask the nurses(not that I could help her, I've got too much hardware on myself to be going anywhere) and she lets loose with a string of unflattering words regarding my character. Alzheimer's is bearable if you're the nurse(and getting payed) or if you're the family member and have memories of a time when that person was with it, but when you're the unrelated roommate it isn't. By 7:30 three nurses are in the room, trying to control her and I wish someone would give her a huge shot of Haldol, I'd do it myself in a heartbeat. Room-mate-icide is a perfectly acceptible option under those circumstances. Fortuantly, 10 minutes later they put me in another room where its much more peaceful. The surgeon comes by and says they need one more test to see if I need surgery. Go down to barium and xray. 3 pm the surgeon comes back and says I don't need surgery, my bowel has straightened out + it does that sometimes. Whether this means I can go home is debateable but I'm on my last(don't ask how old) infusion set and I need more. (it is looking very bad) I call up my endo's office, right across the street and my endo calls me back promptly. By 4, she delivers sets and resevoirs + some "pump hospital info" that I know Wendy in particular, would just love. Basically, I have to agree to be the perfect little diabetic for however long I'm in there or its back to injections for me. Performed a perfunctory exam, made sure I had an appt. with her relatively soon(Sep), and ordered a thyroid test.(what is it with endos and thyroids?) At 5, I get a pain shot while the hospitilist is talking to me and immediately become a blithering idiot. The hospitilist isn't releasing me yet, neither liquid or food is a possibility at this point and the barium has swept through my intestines like a bottle of Drano. Husband comes by to keep me company, but I'm in lala land for the next 12 hours. Bg stays steady at 185, 165.(it's easier when you can't eat) More antibiotics, more IV bags.

Sat. morning dawns and I feel much better. Breakfast is a clear liquid diet, but it stays down. 3 pm, the surgeon come by and again tells me I can go home. A new hospitalist comes by and tells me I can't, my potassium is in the tank + with the dierrea its not a good idea. GI doctor comes by, and says I may need that test where you swallow some camera if my dierrea doesn't resolve. Get moved to another room.

Sunday- They want to move me back to the room with the room mate from heck,I refuse.
I get a room mate. It's freakin' official, I'm getting bored to tears. I would do anything to leave. Morning blood draw, breakfast, internal medicine doctor comes by to inform me my potassium still sucks and do I have any ideas about why, since I've been pumped and pilled full of it for 2.5 straight days? That would be yes, you'd better check my magnesium, I have a kidney issue and leak it like a sieve. It gets pretty low sometimes. Gastro dr comes by and perclaims me good to go, dierrea has temporarily stopped. Run check on magnesium. Eat lunch. Watch Olympics. Do cross stitch. Meanwhile, all 10 relatives of room mate show up and party hardy from 10 am to 8 pm. I don't really mind, they are funny + very pleasant. Internal medicine doc shows up again and informs me that I was right, my magnesium level was 1.0(bordering on heart attack) and unless it got better with two bags of IV mag. I wouldn't be going anywhere. 5 hours later, it wasn't. Another night spent in paradise. Another bag of mag. Dierrea reappears.

Monday morning: Tank up on more mag,potassium, Immodium. Dierrea stops. Only three of room mate's relatives today.(better...)Internal medicine doctor comes by again, another gastro doctor. Another blood test. 5pm, internal medicine doctor comes by and says my mag. and potassium are now normal and I can go home.I could just kiss him, I'm more then ready to get out. The great thing about IV magnesium is it doesn't cause dierrea but you also can't get it without being in the hospital. Gotta schedule appts with my primary care doc to recheck levels + watch the gut if it reappears but it really feels great to be out. Missed my internet, my blogging,that was the worst part.I didn't have much severe pain, it was more an issue of the fallout of the event that kept me in the hospital. Narcotics also knock me out for a long time + I hate asking for them.(although, ibuprofen is freakin' harder to get then narcotics when you're in the hospital, it takes five hours to get the orders written, delivered, and dispensed. If you've got a headache, smuggle in your own) Oh, and yes, my room mate is a type 2 and has absolutely perfect blood sugars(110-130) despite being on Byetta, metformin, and 70/30.(weird combo) I, on the other hand, range from 170-400 and get chewed out by the nurses on a regular basis.


Scott K. Johnson said...

Oh dear! What an experience!

Glad to hear that you are alright and are back home.

Minnesota Nice said...

Oh Heidi, what a ghastly ordeal! I hate hospitals!! One time when I had an allergic reaction I was on a cardiac ward. I was upset and just started sobbing and the lady in the other bed took off her monitor wires and came over and sang to me in Russian. But, of course, then a bunch of alarms went off and everybody came flying in and blamed it on me. I think it was mostly due to the fact that they didn't want their donut break to be disrupted.
Hope ou continue to improve.
I have watched a couple episodes of "Hopkins" too and it's ok - I like "House" better.