Friday, March 19: Day 22, Watching

Yesterday Dan had to go in to see the doctor because he had a mild fever and of more concern to his docs, he had some pain in his shoulder. I think Dan was more worried about the fever, but the docs wanted to see him in the office because they were concerned (we learned later) he may have thrown a blood clot to the lungs. The good news is that it was an episode of gout (and not anything worse). The bad news is that it was an episode of gout (and very painful). So, some medications were adjusted and Dan was sent home. This morning his shoulder was only a little painful but still didn’t have a great range of motion and is still pretty stiff. It should resolve itself in a few days.

This morning’s clinic was not as good as previous ones. Dan’s creatinine was a little higher than it was on Monday, but his weight was also down quite a bit. The combination leads his doctor to believe that Dan’s just not drinking enough water, so Dan must drink a lot more water and more interestingly, *not* stay away from salt. He has tried to avoid salt for years, ever since he was diagnosed with kidney disease, so it was just a little different for Dan to be told to go out and have a bit of salt.

Dan’s wound drainage continues to make things bothersome. His surgeon came by during clinic and examined the incision. He also did a little procedure to open it up a little to encourage the draining. I didn’t really want to watch while this was happening, but there wasn’t a whole lot else to look at! Oh well, if nothing else perhaps I am getting a little hardened to the sight of such things, which might help *if* (not *when*) Charlie ever comes running in with some huge cut on his arm. Which reminds me of a story about myself when I was middle school age and had a little injury to my finger that did bleed a bit. I ran into the house and wouldn’t show my mom because I thought if she reacted in any way to how horrible my owie was, it would make me panic. So I showed it to my dad, who took one look, wrapped it in a washcloth, and drove me to the hospital. Sooo…..back from memory lane now. Where was I?

Oh yes. The surgeon did say that there didn’t seem to be any sign of infection and the tissues look good, but informed us that in patients he’s seen with excessive drainage, he ends up in the operating room with a third to a half of them. We are to watch the wound, watch for signs of a fever (Dan’s temp seems to be fine as I write this), and keep everything nice and clean and bandaged. This afternoon they did an ultrasound. They are pleased that the fluid build-up is smaller than it was a week ago. They are also happy with the blood flow to the new kidney, and confirmed that there are no blockages that may be causing problems. Overall, we are encouraged by the results. Dan is annoyed by the draining, and a little worried about the small chance for a second surgery if he does end up with an infection. But we’ll just take things slowly, listen to the docs, and keep an eye on everything.

Last night we¬†attended our first Little League team meeting. Charlie is now a Giant – since he’s a rookie this year, he doesn’t have the complete baseball uniform but does have a cute orange t-shirt and a Giants cap. Thankfully we have one mom who’s been with the league for seven years and volunteered to be “Team Mom”. She can direct the rest of us, who are first-timers and have no clue what is going on. We learned that instead of keeping a list of which parent is bringing snacks each week, they encourage parents to buy “scrip” at the beginning on the season, which they hand out to the players at the end of each game so they can buy their own snack at the concession stand. I’m reserving judgement until I see what’s for sale, but I have an image of kids buying sodas and candy bars instead of the more healthy snacks that the parents brought to the soccer games last fall. The parents are also expected to work three shifts at the concession stand. Good thing I’m a cash-register guru. I volunteered to be the parent who organizes the kids into batting order and helps get each one ready to bat as their turn comes up. I have to pay $2.00 for a background check since I’ll be an official league volunteer. Which makes me ask myself: what kind of background check costs $2.00?? When it comes to checking someone’s criminal history, I’d rather pay for the deluxe search rather than the bargain cursory lookup. Okay, okay — I’m sure it’s fine. Remember, I am a little league newbie here, so what do I know?

First Little League team!
First Little League team!

And I have to mention that I am over here groaning about Obama’s speech today about the healthcare bill. I am completely fed up with the politicking and spin and playing to the camera, by EVERYONE (not just the President). It might surprise you, but there are at least a few insurance companies (like the non-profit that I work for) that actually want to *improve* things. *sigh*

Read More