Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Update on Nick

Jenn Clark
Back again! i'm going to try to be brief, because it's getting late and I haven't been getting much sleep.

The other kind of upsetting thing about yesterday was that, about an hour before the vent-suctioning fiasco, the nurse told me that she was becoming increasingly concerned about how low Nick's blood pressure was. On Saturday night he was put on a new sedative which we eventually found out was because they were trying to wean him off of the morphine somewhat, and this particular sedative helps to manage withdrawal symptoms. Anyway, it was responsible for the sharp drop in blood pressure, so the nurse consulted the doctor and was told to lower the sedative, up the morphine a bit, and quickly give 500 ml of saline through the IV. All of those measures got his BP back up within about 40 minutes, but it was worrying for a while there. Only good news yesterday was that the opthamologist paid him a visit, and told us that his eyes are looking totally perfect!! No involvement there at all, so that is a huge relief.

Nick had an uneventful night, so on to today! For the first time, today the pieces of good news outnumber the bad!! It has been a pretty good day today. Nick was taken this morning to have his bandages changed, which we were told is horrendously painful, so we have been dreading it very much. (They anaesthetized him for the procedure; it was the aftermath we were worried about.) However, when they removed the old bandages, they discovered that his skin is ALREADY starting to grow back!! It's totally incredible! I think the doctors were very taken aback. I should explain at this point, since I just realized that I forgot to mention it, that under his bandages Nick was totally covered with Biobrane, a kind of fake skin that looks a bit like plastic wrap. It helps to manage pain, and keep infection out and moisture in. It covered his entire body with the exception of groin, ankles and feet, and small cutouts for eyes and mouth. The surgeon told us that it would not be touched when bandages were changed, and would be removed at some later date when no longer needed. But, since his skin is already growing back, the Biobrane had started to come off, so they removed it!! It's almost totally gone from his body. He has nice clean bandages now, and is looking better all the time.

Not so good news: the prolonged use of extremely high levels of morphine has started to cause Nick to hallucinate. The nurses suspected that he was sometimes hallucinating yesterday because he seemed to be watching things that we couldn't see, kind of like a mildly interesting show on tv. Today it got bad, though. The things he was seeing were scaring him badly; he was flailing his arms as if he was trying to fight something off, and he sometimes had a look of utter terror on his face. It was very hard to watch. I had to keep talking to him, trying to get him to focus on me and telling him that I knew that what he could see was very scary, but that it was NOT real, it was just Nicholas and Mommy in the room and there was nothing there that could hurt him. At one point I put my face right up to his so that it was all he could see, and asked him some questions. He said that yes he could see Mommy, no Mommy didn't look scary, no Mommy didn't look ugly (said that to amuse him!), and yes, Mommy looked like a beautiful princess!!! And then...he smiled!!! I was so excited I nearly fell over; he hasn't smiled once since he's been here. I said, "Nicholas, you just smiled at Mommy!" (He looked confused.) Then I said "Can you do it again? Did it hurt you? Can you smile for Mommy?" And he did...an even bigger one!! I was so proud of him, and so happy. It didn't last long, and he soon went back to either being frightened or just staring blankly at the ceiling, but what an improvement and exciting moment.

My boy is asleep now, hopefully he has a nice long rest because he hasn't been sleeping much at all. I need to hit the sack (couch) too. Apparently I am incapable of being brief, but at least I am all caught up now, so hopefully the updates will be shorter and easier. Good night, everyone!

1 comment:

Night Owl said...

How beautiful!

Not the pain part, but the strength, and the smile. I'm sure it was one of the most beautiful smiles you've ever seen, from your description. From your description, it was one of the most beautiful smiles I've ever imagined.

Praying for a continuously more beautiful recovery. <3