Monday, February 26, 2007

Sunday Monday Mop Up 02/26/07

Wow! Is my life ever complicated right now! Folks, I have managed to put myself into stupid situations in the past, but this has got to take the cake.

See, a while back, I managed to take a fall. I tripped over a rock and landed face first on the ground. I was embarrassed and shook up a bit, but that was all I suffered, except for a small, shallow scrape on my leg. A scrape that BARELY bled, I tell you! No big deal.

Well, that was a Wednesday. By Saturday, that scrape had become red and "tight" feeling. I vowed to see a doctor on Monday, because, c'mon, who wants to pay for an Emergency Room visit? Sunday morning when I woke up, the leg was starting to swell up. What's a little swelling? Monday was right around the corner. I'm a diabetic, Jesus, I should know better!

Monday, it kinda hurt to put weight on the leg. I called in to work, and told my boss that I was going to the doctor and I would be in right afterwards. My Primary Care Physician couldn't see me, it turns out, so I was seen by another doctor in his group, who prescribed an oral anti-biotic and told me to take two days off of work and to see my doctor on Wednesday. Cool. Sick days!

Tuesday morning my doctor called to tell me that he had just read the report from the doctor who had seen me and to not wait until Wednesday, but to get my butt into the Emergency Room right away. I went to get out of bed and could barely put ANY weight on my leg now. The leg was red and nasty and, really, pretty scary looking.

When I went to the hospital, they took one look at my leg and admitted me into the hospital. They put me on a Vancomycin (sp?) drip. It appears I was in a world of trouble.

By Friday (that's 3 days later, kids) my leg had not responded to the anti-biotics. The doctor called in some specialists who determined that my infection had turned into an abscess and needed to be surgically removed. Friday night I was wheeled into the Operating Room and they sliced the leg open and dug out the abscess with an ice cream scoop. Okay, I made that last part up, but they did remove the abscess.

Since then, the leg looks a little better every day. I was taken off the "vanc" (that's hospital lingo, ya'll) and put on Oxacillan. But the healing has been slow. WAY slow. While this is going on, mind you, I am flat on my back in a hospital bed and being fed a codeine product for the pain. Well, by Day Seven, the use of narcotics on my drug addicted ass (remember Thanksgiving?) was taking its toll. Yes, gentle readers, I found myself convinced that the hospital bed was trying to swallow me, that I was suffocating, and that my heart was about to burst in my chest cavity. I told everyone who would listen that I was losing my mind and that I needed to get the hell out of the hospital.

At one point, the surgeon who operated on me dropped in to see how I was doing and was aghast to see my leg still red and swollen. He suggested that I either consent to a CTscan to see if he missed anything, or allow him to put me back on the operating table so he could slice me open further to see if he could see if he missed anything.

"Umm...How about we try the CT scan first?" I asked.

"Well, okay" he said, and seemed disappointed. Surgeons, by definition, like to cut things open, ya know. Yup.

So, they scanned my leg and found nothing was missed, so I was released into the care of a Dr. VanHook. This guy specializes in infectious diseases. This is the guy who put me on oxacillan, by the way. When I told him that I was freaking out from being held hostage on a bed that was trying to suck me into Hell, he suggested that he put me on a portable I.V. pump, so I could get home and rest there. This man became my new best friend.

I'm leaving lots and lots of people and things out here, I'm just trying to spit out a general chronology.

So on a Wednesday, 8 days after being admitted, I was released from the hospital. I drove myself to another medical clinic where I was hooked up to the portable I.V. and was sent home. This pump is toted around by me in a black fannypack that looks way too much like a purse. A tube runs from the pump in the purse up my arm and into a catheter (called a "PICC line") that runs from a vein in my arm INTO my chest and UP TO my heart. Yes, that freaks me the fuck out! Really, I need to move on here...

Friday I went to a "wound care clinic". These are the people who are going to supervise the healing of the woodpecker's nest that is the hole in my leg. They installed a "wound vac" - which is a sponge that sucks the fluids outta the hole in my leg and places the stuff into a container on the pump/monitor that fits in a fannypack that looks way too much like yet another purse that I have to tote around. Please try to get the visual here:

Big hairy guy with a tube running up his pant leg and out his waist line that goes into a black purse on his shoulder, and a tube coming out of a second purse running up his shirt and into a spigot in his arm. The tubeage for each invariably gets tangled with the other. The I.V. pump beeps intermittently at me for no apparent reason, and the wound vac pump makes a farty kinda sound now and then.

Do ya think I'm having fun here?

I'll be on the I.V. drip until Monday March 5th. I'll then be on the wound vac for another two to three weeks.

I'm going to try to bundle up these tubes and wires and make an appearance at work tomorrow. Put in 3-4 hours of work a day, nothing too strenuous. My boss and the crew need a break from covering my duties.

So, that's the basics of what is going on. I hope it explains my absence. I'll try to get back on track with the blog here. I know I have some stuff to share for Tuezdayz Cheeze. God Bless YouTube.

I DO want to tell you about this amazing nurse I had. She is from Colombia and I fell madly, deeply in love with her, and I'll tell you why another time.

Meanwhile, nibble someone you like/love on the ear and standby for further instructions.


Tom Dougherty said...

Jesus! You're lucky you went in when you did.

I hope you have a solid, quick recovery and that you never do this kind of thing again. Whew. This sounds terrible for you, but you're bound to have some good war stories from your ordeal. I'm really sorry,JC.

Melissa said...

Sweet baby jesus alive! This is crazy! How are you feeling now, sugar? What's going on? Give a girl an update!