April 11, 2016
The melatonin that they gave Den last night really helped. His night nurse said he slept like a rock. Some good news for a change! When I arrived, he was still sleeping, so I settled in and did some research on the web. When he did wake up, he had a raging headache. His blood sugar was checked…it was 86, not low enough to cause a problem. So a request was sent to the doctor for Tylenol. He got his usual morning meds along with an IV of potassium. When the doctors came around, they ordered his diuretic be upped to 3 times a day. He still had a lot of water in his system.
Around 10AM, he was taken for his swallow study. This is where they give you barium to drink while they scan to see if you are “inhaling” anything when you drink. It came back clear, no fluids were getting into his windpipe. More good news.
The abdominal ultrasound was canceled today, because of the swallow study. Den had to be off food and water for 12 hours before they could get clear pictures with the ultrasound. So maybe try again tomorrow.
Vika, from the LVAD team, stooped by to see us. She told us again that the team meets on Wednesday morning and would be in sometime after that. She also told us about a research study that we might want to be a participate in. She said the research nurse would be in to see us if we were interested…we said yes.
Den had a lot of nausea the rest of the day and no appetite due to the barium from the swallow study. He also had diarrhea…lots of it. He had multiple accidents which caused him much embarrassment. We tried to get him to the commode as quickly a possible each time, but we were never quick enough. I think we changed his sheets 5 or 6 times that day. Den was thankful that there were 2 male nurses on duty that day, they both came to help when we needed to get Den cleaned up and the bed changed. One of the times, MJ was already there trying to help get Den moved to the chair and cleaned up when another round of diarrhea hit. Den was mortified! MJ just said to him, “It happens all the time after a barium swallow. Let’s just get you cleaned up and you will feel a whole lot better.”
The nausea did not let up all afternoon. We tried ginger ale, pepsi and crackers….nothing helped. The nurse called the doctors and they sent up an injectible med (which worked like a charm!)
Den’s heart rate was elevated by evening. His pacemaker was set at 80 and he was running in the mid to upper 90’s. It was most likely the stress of the day causing the elevation, but I knew that it would be monitored.
Today we have an appointment with the electophyisology doctor. We are hoping that he will give the go ahead for Den to get a cardiovert. Den has been in AFib for a year now. He has had no symptoms, but it is better for him in the long run to be in sinus rhythm.