Jul 20, 2019 Latest post:
Jul 25, 2019
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
Jerry had work-up done in preparation for a total aortic valve replacement (TAVR) on July 11 and 12 down at Mayo in Rochester, MN. He returned home to Wannaska on Saturday July 13. Sunday July 14, early in the morning, he had a lot of trouble breathing. Marion brought him to the Roseau emergency room and he was airlifted to Altru Hospital in Grand Forks. We expected a short stay to get rid of some extra fluid on his lungs. He also had a low hemoglobin so he got a blood transfusion.
The blood transfusion seems to have started a downward spiral in his breathing and he needed a bi-pap (pressurized breathing mask) that supported his breathing. He needed more and more oxygen and despite his efforts to breathe on his own, he was transferred to ICU early Thursday morning and put on a ventilator and sedated. The chest x-rays of his lungs showed worsening fluid from Monday to Thursday. The decision to intubate was not straightforward as it could put extra strain on Dad's heart valve. Dad seemed to surprise the doctors by how well he tolerated getting the breathing tube. There is no doubt he is a tough guy.
This morning he was responsive, following commands to open his eyes, squeeze hands, responded to us with nods when we talked to him, smiling, etc. His chest x-ray had improved to the point they decreased his sedative and gave him a trial to take some breaths on his own. He did really well with that, so at about 5PM they took his tube out!
His ultimate goal is to be stable enough to transfer to Mayo for the heart valve replacement. But for now, he is tackling one thing at a time.
We appreciate all the prayers, support and thoughtfulness of friends and family. This has all been "good medicine."