Karen Johnson

First post: Dec 12, 2017 Latest post: Jan 16, 2018
Tuesday December 5th Karen was not feeling well, she had mentioned some slight chest pains and feeling tired. She assumed it was just from the amount of work they had been doing on their new house (moving, cleaning, etc..). Tuesday night she had Butch drive her to Mercy Hospital in Coon Rapids, they gave her some nitroglycerin and performed some tests on her. After a few hours they decided she should be at Abbott Northwestern in Minneapolis, as they specialize in Cardiology. Wednesday, she was scheduled for a stent, during the procedure she went into cardiac arrest (luckily while still under the surgeons care), they were able to stabilize her and get her hooked up to an ECMO machine. She needed 2 more stents and blood thinners to stop the clotting that was happening at the stent locations. A CT scan then showed internal bleeding in the abdomen, another emergency operation was performed to find the source of the blood, it was luckily found, but a lot of internal issues started to snowball. The next morning (Thursday) she was retaining fluid and the ventilator was having trouble working, they had to manually use a breathing bag for 7 hours to keep her lungs working. At this point they had one option to hook her up to a dialysis machine to help pull fluid from her body, due to her fragile condition they were not sure if they would be able to get it operational. At this time the hospital had us call in all of the family members and ushered us into a private room, a chaplain was called and he sat with us until the doctors could give us an update. The doctor said things are "minute to minute" and was in very critical condition, and they were not sure what the outcome would be. Eventually the dialysis machine started to pull off enough fluid that a ventilator was able to be used again. It has been "hour to hour" since then, with her being relatively stable in the ICU. On (Monday 12/11) they were able to remove the ECMO machine and balloon pump in her leg, but she remains very sick still and needs the ventilator and a dialysis machine to remove fluids. 

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