Thursday, November 18, 2010

Difficulty with Jake's Pic Line and Balancing life with other children

Jake has Trisomy 21 and is in the hospital.  They have difficulty inserting his pic line and we have difficulty balancing attention between his other siblingsTuesday KC got to spend the day with Jacob while I spent my time with Courtney.  It seems that she is beginning to feel the affects of her parents being gone all the time, so she needed to have some 'normal' time with her mother. 

So, as I was being mom to Courtney, KC got to hold down the fort at the hospital.  He got to be there as they started his pick line - although they didn't finish it.  They tried around 10PM while I was in the hospital but his veins were "slippery" so they weren't able to complete the process and will try again in the morning. His poor little leg looks horrible, but what are you going to do?  If they can't do it, they can't do it.  The problem lies in the fact though that when they attempted to complete the pick line, they damaged the vein making it unusable, and therefore giving the nurses no way of being able to administer Jacob's antibiotic cocktail to him.  No antibiotics means he keeps getting sicker, and with the infections he has, that means death.  So, obviously administering no antibiotics was NOT an option.  This meant that the nurses had to put in a new IV....AGAIN.  And the odds weren't in Jacob's favor. 

Yep, you guessed it...another 1.5 hours of picks, prods, and digging at every available vein on his feet, arms, legs, head, back to his arms, back to his legs, and finally getting a vein to bleed and work in his wrist.  It's just so odd that a little boy who's platelet counts are dangerously low would have such a difficult time with clotting blood.  Hopefully the doctors will be able to come up with an explanation here VERY soon. Until then, we were just focusing on the need for a peripheral pick line into Jacob so that he doesn't have to go through the torture of IV pokes every night.

I wound up staying up with Jacob all night long and finally left around 4 a.m.  He just wasn't comfortable and had tried to throw up at around 1 a.m. so I opted to hold him on my chest all night long and make sure that he didn't throw up.

On Wednesday, we were promised that Jacob would get his pick line first thing in the morning, so KC made sure to be here right at 9 a.m. But by 6 p, when I got there, Jacob still didn't have his line in.  Luckily, the charge nurse went to bat with us and called the internal radiation dept. and go them to agree to do the pick line at 7:30 PM.  I followed Jacob down, met with the 5 people that would be working on Jacob and left my baby in the hands of a very experienced group of professionals.  I went upstairs and waited...and waited...and waited.  Finally, at nearly 10 PM they wheeled Jacob back into the room.  The anesthesiologist informed me that Jacob was "unpickable" and so they opted to put an IJ (interior jugular) pick line into him, which means that it was a bit more aggressive approach to a pick line but had a higher risk of infection as well (Great! Just what we need.  Another possible infection!). But at least he had his pick line which meant no more IV torture! I also discovered that even though he has clotting issues, he really has a problem with lack of clotting - ????  At the location where they had put the pick line in his internal jugular, they had sutured the skin to keep the IV from coming out and put some gauze over the area.  However, 5 minutes after they had left, the area had oozed blood so much that it was seeping out from under the tape and gauze and dripping down his arm.  So the nurses had to remove the original dressings and put a new dressing of gauze on his chest to help absorb the blood.   They had put Jacob on general anesthesia and put a breathing tube on him.  However, the tube really irritated his throat which left him hoarse and with a really raspy sound whenever he breathed. So, again, I spent the night with Jacob in my arms resting on my chest and taking care of him every time he wiggled, whined, or cried. Didn't leave until 5 a.m. so that I'd be home in time to take Elisha to early morning seminary.  Lo and behold, it was snowing as I left the hospital.

I took Elisha to seminary and stayed up to do the dishes, tidy up the house a bit, and take care of Courtney while KC got up, got ready to go see Jacob and take Nate to school. KC spent the afternoon at the hospital with Jacob and was told that Jacob is experiencing some modeling, which means that his skin looks kind of blotchy or like marble.  They seemed to think this was due to poor blood flow and possibly from fighting another infection. They said that they'd be keeping an eye on it. The guy from the Center for Infectious Disease also came in and told KC that they HAD to get the lumbar poke done on Friday to check for meningitis.  KC told him that we were being told that his platelets were too low to do the spinal tap.  The doctor told him that yes, the platelet counts were low, but they were high enough to do the tap, and that basically the benefits outweighed the risks. They needed to find out if he had meningitis because the antibiotics that Jacob is taking now would not fight meningitis and they needed to get him on the antibiotics quickly if did have it.  No pressure.  Jacob continues to breath VERY raspy breaths. They've been going in and suctioning fluid from his throat, but it still sounds pretty bad. Soooo, I'm in for another long night. Luckily, the Allreds are in town and have offered to take Courtney for a couple of hours in the morning so that I can get a few hours of shut-eye.  I can do all nighters. I'm no stranger to them because of my work at AC Bouquet making candy bouquets.  But 3 of them in a row is a bit excessive even for me.  Thank heavens for family!!!! They really are lifesavers! :)

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