Nov 15, 2017 Latest post:
Dec 24, 2017
Hello everyone. This is Jane's daughter, Laura. We wanted to keep everyone informed of my mom's situation and health.
Thursday afternoon my mom starting feeling ill at around noon with a fever and chills. She assumed it was just a virus and called in sick for work on Friday. She spent the next two days in bed with a high fever.
On Saturday she called the nurse's line to check on her health. She was instructed to go to urgent care right away. She was given antibiotics for a virus and was sent home.
On Sunday morning she was having chest pain so she called my dad at work to bring her to the ER.
They arrived at Maple Grove Hospital where the doctors tested her troponin levels. A troponin test measures the levels troponin T or troponin I proteins in the blood. These proteins are released when the heart muscle has been damaged, such as occurs with a heart attack. The more damage there is to the heart, the greater the amount of troponin T and I there will be in the blood. Typical troponin levels measure around .25 ng/ml. My mom's levels were 16 ng/ml, reading off the charts.
They rushed her by ambulance to North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale for further treatment. While at North, the doctors determined that the cause of her illness could be a virus that attacked her heart. The doctors placed a pacemaker on her heart to keep it beating as it should. They also gave her a heart pump, which will give her heart a break, help it pump the way it should, and regulate her blood pressure. The doctors at North ultimately decided that the best care she could get would be at the University of Minnesota. She was taken from North Memorial to the University of Minnesota.
The doctors at the University took a biopsy of her heart to determine the cause of her sickness. Since being moved to the University of Minnesota, her heart function has increased marginally. They have also been monitoring how the virus has affected other organs; her liver and kidneys are both affected, however we will not know if the damage is permanent until after her heart is functioning at 100%.
We received the results of the biopsy today and we were told she has something called severe lymphocytic myocarditis, which is the inflammatory response within the myocardium (the muscular tissue of the heart) to a virus. The doctors didn't waste anytime in starting her on treatment.
She is currently undergoing aphresis, which is the removal of certain blood cells. They are exchanging plasma in her blood with the plasma from a donor. This will hopefully give her body the strength it needs to fight off the virus. She will also have immune treatment to help her body fight. They will alternate these treatments every other day until next Tuesday, unless her body reacts poorly.
As of now, this is all we know. She is awake most of the time, is in good spirits, and is joking with the nurses. In fact, she instructs the nurses on what to do! If you know Jane, this is SO like her. We are keeping visits to a minimum as her heart is very weak.
Please continue to pray for my mom. She needs all the thoughts and prayers she can get. She is currently surrounded by all of her brothers and sisters, her daughters, husband, and close friends. She is a fighter and we know that she can make it through this.