Nov 21, 2017 Latest post:
Feb 16, 2018
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. Please note that any donations given on this page are to Caring Bridge, which is a worthy organization, but those donations do not go to Brian and Sally.
Sally started feeling ill the week of October 30th and thought she had a stomach bug. One night she was trying to make it to the bathroom and she fell and hit her face. For the next couple of days, Brian noticed that she seemed to be zoning out a bit and wanting to stay in bed. On November 3rd, Brian told her to get ready to go to Salina. He finally got her there after asking her multiple times to get ready and each time she would get back in bed. At the ER in Salina, she got immediate assistance, and had a CT scan. The doctor came in right after and said it appeared that she had a large brain tumor and needed to be transferred to Via Christi in Wichita.
At Via Christi, Sally had several other tests run and the doctors there told us it was very likely that her tumor was brain cancer and she was scheduled for brain surgery on November 6th with a plan to remove the tumor. Sally's surgery happened on November 6th and when the surgeon was finished, he told us that it was actually a brain abscess, instead of a tumor. The doctor felt as if he had removed the abscess and said she would need aggressive antibiotics for several months to help her body heal. Sally was then moved to Wesley Rehabilitation Hospital on November 13th to get stronger before heading home. During that week at rehab, Brian felt as though she may be actually getting worse each time he saw her. Brian called me with some concerns on November 17th about her choking on some water and not being able to hold her head up, so I called the rehab director to express these concerns. Within a couple of hours, she was sent for a repeat CT scan and it was found that her abscess was back in her brain and she was sent back to the neurocritical ICU at Via Christi and they also discovered a clot in her left leg as well. Overnight that night, she started having some shortness of breath and they found she had a large blood clot in her lungs (pulmonary embolism). As a result, her two problems complicated each other and she was no longer a candidate for surgery to have the abscess removed. We were told her prognosis was grim, so I requested numerous times for Via Christi to do a telephone consult with KU and they stated they would not do that unless we requested a transfer. After some encouragement from family, Brian and Sally requested the transfer to the University of Kansas Hospital in Kansas City (KU). She was transferred via ambulance on November 19th.
Sally is now in being cared for in the neurosurgical ICU at KU- Cambridge Tower A, room 5106: 3825 Cambridge St Kansas City, KS 66160 She welcomes cards and we are so appreciative to everyone that has already visited in Wichita and KC and has sent cards already!
Sally now has several doctors managing her care at KU. Currently the plan is to try to get her blood clot in her lungs under control with blood thinners and prep her for surgery in a few days to drain the abscess. In the meantime, she is being treated with a combination of antibiotics. Antibiotics only have a certain level of effectiveness for brain abscesses, however, because antibiotics don't cross the blood brain barrier well and they also don't penetrate absesses well.
We will attempt to do frequent updates on this page, but always assume that no news is good news and that things are likely stable if we aren't writing on this page. We thank you all for your prayers. We don't have access to our phones at all times and it is very difficult to catch up with all of the texts, voicemails, and missed calls, but we appreciate everyone's concern. Please feel free to share this page with those that want updates on Sally's progress! -Marci (Keeler) Jennings (niece)