Monday, January 12, 2009
Monday, January 12, 2009
Today Christy is doing about the same as yesterday. We still want to see some improvement in her movement- to become purposeful.... Purposeful meaning- scratch her face, try to pull out some tubes in her mouth that may be uncomfortable, pick her nose, show "thumbs up" on command or open her eyes and track the voice speaking to her. The Doctors and Nurses are going to be weaning off her sedation medication to give her a clear chance to wake up more. She has been on a continuous intravenous drip(going in her IV into her bloodstream) of pain medicine since her admission to the hospital. Initially, while on the cooling- hypothermia treatment, this medication was at very high doses- 250 mcg/hour. Christy's broken ribs and scapular and spinal fractures are painful injuries. Every time she breathes, she uses her rib cage and moves the entire area surrounding her injuries. We can not cast her ribs like we could cast a leg because the cast would have to be around her chest, making it impossible to breathe. The continuous IV pain medication has been weaned down to 25-50 mcg/hour now. We are leaving her on the pain medication, which may be somewhat sedating , because we want to keep her comfortable. We will take off one medication at a time. She will be taken off of the small amount of sedating medication called Versed. This medication is used in other medical procedures to make you sleep. Because it's so important to get a clearer picture of her Neurological (brain) status we are starting to completely remove these medications. She has been on these medications to provide her with comfort and to decrease her blood pressure and heart rate during "agitation". Christy has always been sensitive to voices and touching- even while on sedation and pain medication. By sensitive I mean her blood pressure and heart rate go up when she is touched and talked to. She also continues to have the facial and body twitching, that worsens with verbal and tactile stimulation. Sometimes its hard for Christy to get comfortable after coughing or repositioning and the pain medication and sedation have been helping her settle down. We want Christy to be comfortable but don't want to keep her from waking up. The good thing is that the nurses can always put the medication back on.
Chrsity is tolerating her tube feeding at a goal rate. This means she is being fed through a tube from her mouth to her small intestine and she is digesting it fine. Being at "goal rate" of 55cc per hour means she's tolerating the proper amount of calories designated for her healing. A dietitian calculates her nutritional needs for healing and how much protein and fiber, calories, etc. would be ideal for her. They find a formula of liquid food that matches her needs and pump it through the tube for her to ingest.
Chrsity has been receiving healing touch and Reiki. These are both energy therapies to help aid healing. My mom, Joyce is a Healing touch practitioner (and a pediatric nurse). She's been coming in to give treatments to Christy almost daily. Queen's hospital offers this complimentary therapy to patients who request it. Volunteers also come to do treatments on patients, so Christy has been receiving this calming therapy daily. It helps pain, sleeping more sound, and opens her to healing.
I wanted to offer everyone to send their favorite picture or two to me. I would love to add to the slide show pictures that are dear to you. You can email me pictures at firstname.lastname@example.org (my email still has my maiden name :) ) I will be back to work tomorrow after being away for a week. I may not get to blog until later in the evening. Please send your love and prayers to Chrsity and the entire family at this time.