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Thread: My Father's New Injury-Have ?s

  1. #21
    delta,
    Hopefully one of the SCI-Nurses can comment on your dad's medical condition and the pro/cons of the antidepressants. In the meantime, we're all praying for your Dad.
    Daniel

  2. #22
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    Thanks, Dan. He needs a lot of prayers right now! We did talk to a Dr. today about the antidepressants and they said they don't want to start anything until they get his heart rate stabilized and figure out if there are any problems there. He mentioned that it may also be due to the nerves sending confusing messages to the heart which can be common in SCI? I guess it's a delicate balance of using drugs to keep his blood pressure raised yet keeping his heart rate down. WHen we went to visit today he was so tired he didn't even open his eyes. I guess I'm just glad he's resting.

  3. #23
    The doctors on site know what they need to juggle during this phase of his treatment. I'd go with their recommendations and be patient. As he emerges from this critical phase of his injury, things will start moving (but slowly) back toward normal for all of you.

    RAB

  4. #24
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    Wow- I can't believe I'm writing this, but my Dad is officially off the vent (I watched them wheel it out of his room today!) And he is using the Passy Muir beautifully! He has dramatically improved over just a few days. He is awake much more and very alert and asking lots of questions. The nurse today said his secretions are decreased and he is coughing a lot on his own. They say he will be ready for rehab in a few days. (He has been doing PT every day in bed but has not yet been OUT of bed.) Tomorrow I will begin pursuing the best place for his rehab that will accept him.
    Jeanne

  5. #25
    Great news. Be sure he is getting some diaphragm strengtening exercises now. A P-Flex is a good way to do this, as it short periods of time with sand bag weights on his upper abdomen. Let us know what you are able to get as far as rehab. Don't give up on the VA.

    (KLD)

  6. #26
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    More good news...my Dad's trach is out and he is eating regular food again slowly. He's coughing well and the pneumonia continues to improve. We personally checked his skin thoroughly today and everything is clear except for a little rash in between his legs. The nurse suspects it COULD be a bit of a yeast rash and has put in an order for a stronger cream. Otherwise, everything looks really healthy so far. I have noticed for some time now, though, that his skin is getting more dry and flaky-especially his hands and fingers. What's the best course of action for this?
    Also, he should be moving to a rehab any day now.

  7. #27
    I went to Bath & Body works and picked up Sweet Almond Oil for my dad's hands and feet. It's a massage oil, and they suggest that you add scents, etc to it.... I'd rather have it mild so I just use it the way it comes. There's a lotion that the nurses use that is supposedly very good for preventing skin breakdown (or something of the sort) but he and I both really enjoy the massage aspect and the fact that it's not so "formally hospital-like". My dad always loved getting his feet massaged when we were growing up.... makes it kinda fun now; even though he doesn't feel it much, it's more of a mental/emotional gesture and keeps his skin a bit healthier.
    Mrapunzel

    Fear Less... Hope More...
    Whine Less... Breathe More...
    Talk Less... Say More...
    Hate Less... Love More...
    And All Good Things Are Yours.

  8. #28
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    Thanks, Mrapunzel- I will try the oil. I've been using a lotion from the nurses in his room but I think oil might be better.

    My Dad had a nurse today from Santa Clara Valley Med Center's SCI clinic. She came in took one look at him and said to the Docs: "Why is this man still in bed?! Why does he still have a trach? Why isn't he eating more?" All three issues were promptly resolved. They took out his trach, gave him a full turkey dinner(which he devoured), and are transferring him out of ICU tomorrow morning to an interim rehab hospital for ten days until he should be heading to the VA SCI Unit on Feb 27th. Just wish he'd had more proactive nurses like that sooner!

  9. #29
    We also learned a trick - if we put really nice lotion in the room when my dad was in ICU, the nurses would come in and use it on my dad (and in the process, have it on their hands, too) After learning a bit more about cross-contamination and isolation procedures, we told them they were welcome to use it for themselves after washing their hands as long as they used it on my dad, too They'd put lotion on his hands/feet.... wash their hands.... apply lotion to their own hands... and go about whatever it was they needed to do. They felt spoiled, and my dad got a little "extra TLC".

    Oh, and I'm soooooooooooooooooooooooo happy for you guys! I wish I could wake up and have that happen to US!!! *snoopy happy dance* that's GREAT news!!!
    Mrapunzel

    Fear Less... Hope More...
    Whine Less... Breathe More...
    Talk Less... Say More...
    Hate Less... Love More...
    And All Good Things Are Yours.

  10. #30
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    Boy, what a rollercoaster of a ride it's been with my Dad's SCI. One day things are good, the next they can be so low. It seems your emotions seem to follow suit.
    I was FINALLY successful in getting the VA to take my Dad into their SCI Center this past Wednesday. I think this is the best place for him right now. Unfortunately, in the time it took to get him there, he was placed in a rehab hospital that wasn't very skilled in the care of SCI. He developed a stage II ulcer and shearing on his sacrum which is now being treated at the VA. They've also determined that he had a stroke after his SCI, when exactly they don't know. But an MRI and CT confirmed it. He has been suffering from extreme sleepiness, some confusion, periferal vision loss, and short term memory loss. It was obvious to us several weeks ago that these symptoms were occurring. We just thought it was from being in a hospital for so long, or from his bout with pneumonia.
    The VA has already expressed their concern that he may not benefit from rehab if he can't participate cognitively. So, once again, we're scared to death what's going to happen with him.

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