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Garth had not been feeling well for several weeks but he thought it was the flu or allergies. Then on Saturday March 23 it all hit really hard and Garth woke up and was feeling ill. He was vomiting and thought he had the flu. But he became so weak that Jay took him to St Mary’s in the morning. Later on Sunday St Mary’s recognized that he was too sick for them to handle so he was air lifted to kadlec hospital in Richland.
They admitted him and immediately sedated him and started him on a ventilator. At that time he was diagnosed as having a kidney infection. But things changed quickly. He has a terrible bacteria infection, his kidneys and liver are shutting down, pneumonia and he has MRSA. So he is extremely ill.
These are the daily events up to today Saturday March 30.
Monday march 25 The kid Dr. just came in and did an assessment, doesn't like anything that he's seeing. They've switched everything in his neck from left to right and placing the catheter for dialysis. They put a refrigerated blanket under him cause his temperature is out of control 41.8° C. He's pretty much on fire trying to kill the infection. The next 24 hrs will be crucial to his recovery.
The refrigerator blanket is at it's lowest setting! Temperature is just under 40°C with ice packs added, dialysis has been going for an hour but they had to slow it down because it was dropping his blood pressure.
Temp is down to 38.0°C (100.4°F) much more manageable
So he's gone from the air conditioner, to the heater! 35.3° C, 95.9°F
Tuesday March 26 They decreased one BP medication and reduced one other overnight and into the morning, and his BP has been more stable today. Other than that, there's not been much change. Continuous dialysis is ongoing and probably will for the next 3 or 4 days, or until that and the antibiotics can knock down the infection.
Wednesday March 27
So, in a nutshell, he had a bad day! His kidney's aren't working, his liver enzymes spiked meaning liver is shutting down, his heart is still requiring medication and the ventilator is working at maximum. That being said his left lung ruptured this afternoon more than likely because of all the fluid in them and the ventilator is trying to fill the lungs, so they put in a chest tube. We just met with the Intesevist, and he explained it to us this way. All of these life saving measures are in an attempt to let his body rest and repair itself. When and if the infection is responding to the treatment, (antibiotics and dialysis) then and only then will they consider reducing the life support measures to see where he is at. His approach was that we have a long way to go before any major decisions are made. The target goal is full recovery, but only time will tell that. We felt much better after meeting with him.
Thursday March 28 They put in another chest tube over night (right side). His looks a little better and his blood pressure improved slightly after that procedure.
CT scan last night showed that the tops of his lungs were collapsing, so they put in a second chest tube to relieve the pressure on his lung. That has worked and his lungs are functioning better. He's only on one BP medication now and the dosage since shift change at 7:00 am has decreased from 6 to 3 mg per hour. And his color looks a little better.
So his breathing rate has become an issue at times. 12-24 is normal, he was breathing over the ventilator which was good, but his BPM was going up between 30-40 BPM. That was affecting his blood gases level because he wasn't exchanging oxygen very efficiently. ARDS (Adult Respritory Distress Syndrome) is what they call it. So at 9:15 they put him on a paralytic, which makes him 100% dependent on the ventilator. That being said, his breathing is less labored, his vitals are better and his lungs are working the way they should. I asked the nurse if this was considered an induced coma and she said no, the sedation is the same, and the paralytic is only to keep him from breathing on his own.
Saturday March 30
Just spoke to Garth's nurse, he's off the BP medication, one blood culture came back and they've changed the antibiotics and they are going to stop the paralytic in a little bit and see how he does.
They've eliminated the paralytic and he's breathing over the ventilator on his own. He was off all BP medication for a few hours but they had to put him back on because his kidneys aren't producing any urine and they are pulling off some fluid by dialysis. They've changed the antibiotic to an even broader spectrum antibiotic. His blood ox and temp have been good all day.