Sunday, January 18, 2009

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Christy is doing about the same today- still opening her eyes and blinking. We love talking with her when she's got both her eyes open!  She is starting to move her eyes more, almost looking at us it seems.  She is still not tracking voices yet ( turn eyes to look at someone when they talk to her), but we hope it will be soon!  She definitely appears to have clear sleep and awake cycles.  She recently (maybe yesterday) has started to calm down into a deep relaxed state that looks just like a deep sleep.  She even has times where her face isn't twitching at all anymore.  The twitching in her face is calming down overall.  Christy is still receiving medication to prevent seizures.  She only had seizures initially and received medication for them immediately.  (Remember the EEGs confirmed the twitching was not seizure activity after the anti-seizure medication was started, Plus she had therapeutic levels (the right amount) of the anti-seizure drug in her blood). Tonight, Hanae & I were with Christy and she was awake.  Hanae treated her to a foot massage while I did some range of motion (exercising arms and legs to prevent stiffness).  It's nice to have a masseuse in the family, huh Christy? :)

Christy got her Arterial Line taken out today.  An arterial line is a small plastic catheter that was in her artery that measures blood pressure second to second.  It's like an IV, but it is in an artery instead of a vein and it has to be continually flushed (about 4ml per hour) to keep it from clotting off.  A bag of saline under pressure automatically flushes the line.  The arterial line measures blood pressure by being attached to a transducer (plastic contraption which serves as a translator).  The movement of the catheter inside the artery goes to the transducer and translates into a waveform and correlating numbers (blood pressure) on the bedside monitor. Look at the picture at the top right. Christy's blood pressure has been stable and they don't really need the second by second reading of blood pressure now.  She has a automatic blood pressure cuff (similar to the one they use at the doctor's office) to measure her blood pressure less frequently.  The arterial line also served as an easy, painless way to draw blood when needed.  At one point Christy was requiring labs to be drawn every four hours.  On top of that- frequent blood gases.  Blood gases are a lab test on blood drawn from the artery.  They measure the PH of the blood (how acidotic or how alkalotic), oxygen and levels of Carbon Dioxide in the blood.  These are directly related to the lungs and how they are functioning.  Arterial blood is measured for this test instead of venous blood because it just came from the lungs.  Arterial blood is blood that has been oxygenated by the lungs and is going to deliver the oxygen to the tissues of the body.  Venous blood is de-oxygenated blood already used up by the body that is going back to the heart to be pumped to the lungs to exchange their carbon dioxide for oxygen.  The ventilator settings can be changed to give more breaths or bigger breaths to Christy if her carbon dioxide is too high.  Luckily Christy's breathing has been stable and she's regulating her acid-base balance all on her own.  She's got good numbers on her blood gases, so she won't need this lab test as frequently.  This leads me to another small victory today... Christy is on the mode of the ventilator where she's practically breathing on her own.  They switched her today around 09:00am.  They are monitoring Christy closely for signs of exhaustion.  If she is breathing too fast or too heavy (using too many muscles to breathe), they can give her more support from the machine.  Christy seemed to be doing fine on these minimal settings and that's great! I bet she'll be breathing on her own without the machine soon!  Christy will still need humidified oxygen when she is off the ventilator.  It's called a trach collar.  It needs to be humidified because she is breathing from an opening in her trachea which bypasses the nose and throat.  The passage through our nose and upper airway acts as our natural humidifier & air warmer when we take breaths.  The body is pretty cool, huh? I think so too! 

Ok, so tomorrow when you see 08:00am on your clock- in your car, at work, at home, whatever- let's send positive awaking energy to Christy's bed at Queens through a prayer.  And by the way, I have been receiving your comments and emails, and have been relaying to the rest of the family your messages of love and prayer... they thank you from the deep parts of their hearts! Until tomorrow, gabby


  1. Hi Gabby,

    It's awesome to hear that Chris is hitting these milestones everyday, albeit small, those little steps will eventually bring all of her back. She's doing it like the champ she is, like the champ we all knew she was! AWESOME!!! Can't thank you enough for taking the time to keep all of us informed on her progress. I hope you all know how much we love her, and although we can't always be there, she is never far from our thoughts and prayers.

    Take good care of yourself, our love to all.

    Charla and Wyatt

  2. I worked with Christy's dad, Paul years ago and Christy is a friend of my nephews' mommy, Trina...
    I was saddened to hear about her accident and think it's wonderful that she has the love and support of her family and friends to see her through this difficult time...
    She is in my thoughts and prayers...


  3. Hi Gabby;
    Keepin in touch with Christy's healing all the way from Molokai...Info is very informative, and it's great to hear that Christy's improving. Thanks for all of your time & efforts, we appreciate it very much !!

    Suzette Parraga-Kahana - Hawaiian Airlines

  4. Hey Gabby!
    You are a heaven sent angel! Thanks for keeping everybody posted! I just started praying for Christy like crazy this morning around 6:30 am. I truly believe that the ultimate healing is taking place! She's gonna amaze everyone with her recovery! The whole Gouveia clan is in my prayers and heart, continue to stay blessed!