Apr 18, 2016 Latest post:
Aug 14, 2016
"Jesus! That poor guy can't catch a break!" We've been saying this about Dad since early Spring. He has been a patient in three different Emergency rooms, three hospitals and two care centers since the first of February. Due to clogged arteries below his knee (Dad is also diabetic) and a wound on his left toe that refused to heal, half of Dad's foot needed to be amputated. Pneumonia set in after surgery, followed by numerous complications including bladder infections and catheter issues including one exploding in his bladder. Upon learning the amputated area was not healing, a second surgery was performed in an attempt to "clean up" the affected area. Approximately March 30, elevated enzymes were detected and we found ourselves impatiently waiting for a bed to open at a hospital in Des Moines while Dad's skin color quickly turned more and more yellow lying in a hospital bed in Mason City. He experienced a lot of pain including "phantom pain" (which Dad tells us is very real) in his leg and amputated area. A large amount of morphine was administered and due to his liver enzymes continuing to rise, Des Moines was no longer an option but luckily a bed became available in Iowa City. He was taken there late Saturday night a few weeks ago. It was there we learned Dad not only had a huge problem with his amputated area that couldn't heal due to insufficient blood flow in his clogged arteries, we then were informed of a mass on his liver. Upon a test involving a scope to view the mass AND to insert a stent in the bile duct (to drain the digestive fluid bile through the liver) and a brushing of the mass was tested, Dad was diagnosed with cholangiocarcinoma or bile duct cancer. With Chemo &/or radiation not an option in Dad's situation and because he is not healthy enough to undergo another surgery on his foot/leg, the Iowa City Drs. are releasing him to the Floyd County Memorial Hospital once (yep! you guessed it!) a bed becomes available. It was so unfortunate that Dad could not attend his Grandson, John Chambers' wedding to the beautiful and smart Michelle Eackes. The Newlyweds did, however, drive from Mason City to Iowa City in their wedding attire for some pictures with Grandpa and to deliver some wedding cake. We have been trying to take care of Mom as although she never admits it, we know she gets tired. She as been with dad nearly everyday at the hospital and either stays with Brother Mitch and wife Lori in Lone Tree during the evening or one of us other siblings in a motel when we come down. Dad will be 79 in July and Mom will be 80 in August and they will celebrate their 60th Wedding Anniversary on May 22. Dad is very anxious to get back to Northern Iowa although he has had excellent care at the University of Iowa Hospital. We continue to do a lot of praying and will take one day at a time. He presently feels pretty good now that they have finally found nerve pain medication that has really minimized the pain in his foot/leg area. Thank you for keeping Dad in your thoughts and prayers. He has been through so much, we're amazed at his strength to be in a hospital sitting for this long and to still crack smiles and give the nurses "High Fives!"