Thursday, March 27, 2008

Discharged, but...

I haven't had time to update this for a couple of days so I'll try to cram as much as possible in this post.

This was one hospitalization that I was not getting a "good" feeling from. Usually when Ron is in the hospital I have a calm assurance that everything is going to be fine and he'll come home in better shape than when he went in. I wasn't getting that feeling on Sunday. It wasn't until Monday evening that I started thinking that he was going to be OK.

He had gained so much weight in such a short period of time that I was really concerned. From Sunday to Monday he lost 10 pounds; from Monday to Tuesday he lost six more. He still has about 16 to lose from what he gained in the last month. He is supposed to weigh himself every day and if his weight goes up three pounds in a day or five pounds in a week, we're to call the doctor. We did a baseline weight this morning (I forgot to start it yesterday) and will calculate based upon that. I'm concerned that he's gained a few pounds because our scales usually weigh lighter than doctor or hospital scales and he was four pounds heavier this morning on ours than he was Tuesday on the hospital scales.

Tuesday he looked SO much better - more like his normal self. His color had returned and he was no longer running a temperature. I was pretty happy to see such a positive change. Each of the doctors who came in were pleasantly surprised to see Ron so much improved. He was discharged in the early evening and we got home about 6:30 that night.

Wednesday we had the home health nurse out to see Ron and she changed his wound vac. She said his wound has gotten smaller in diameter and doesn't appear to be as deep. Dr. Heady had said in the hospital that the bone was no longer visible, so that was a good sign. Ron didn't have a temperature yesterday but he was wheezing a bit.

I went to the grocery store and spent two hours reading labels and finding things that were healthy, things that he liked, low calorie, low sodium, and low fat. It was tough. I bought pre-chopped veggies off the salad bar, bought him some sugar free snacks (not bad on sodium content), and bought lean cuts of meat for me to fix. I stayed away from canned veggies and opted for frozen and fresh instead. I picked up some frozen fruits in addition to getting some fresh ones. It was quite a chore to find things that I thought would work.

Today he's back to being short of breath (but not as bad as over the weekend) and he has not had an appetite. He says his insides hurt and maybe the region around his left kidney. He refused any breakfast and I didn't give him insulin (his sugar was 178). I had to go to work today but I left him with a variety of containers of the low sodium, healthy foods I'd worked so hard to pick out.

I called him at 11:00 and he still hadn't eaten but promised he would shortly. I called at 1:00 and he said he'd been napping and would eat. His oldest daughter, Stacey, called him at 3:00 and he still hadn't eaten but she insisted that he get something to eat. I got home at 6:00 this evening and saw where he'd eaten my stir-fry veggies (he'd gotten the containers mixed up - ugh!), had a container of pudding, and a container of sugar free jell-o. That's it. He's on a fluid restriction and he drank more than I'd laid out for him to drink (although he didn't drink an excessive amount over what he was able to have).

As of right now, I'm not sure what our next course of action will be. The home health nurse will be here in the morning and I'm going to discuss my concerns with her and see what she thinks we should do. If his weight is up, I'll have my answer right off the bat. Increased weight means increased fluid retention and that's one of the warning bells.

Until then, I'll be keeping close tabs on Ron tonight.

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