Missing in Action

My last post was about making choices and the reason for it is because I found myself with a negative amount of spoons each day. I was malnourished and dropping weight fast. I was on liquids only and even that was failing me for almost a week. I had been on a downward spiral with my health and ended up in the hospital again. I guess this post will just bring you up to date on my story.

After leaving my nutritionist’s office last week, my wife and I stopped for lunch on the way to work. Lunch for her and a milkshake for me. It wasn’t long before I found myself vomiting in the bathroom of the restaurant. She quickly paid and we left. My mother had called me to see how my appointment went and the two of them decided it was time to go back to the hospital.

The issue with this was that my local hospital basically told me to not come back to them because they cannot help me any further. They told me I needed to be treated by the specialists handling my case. I appreciate them not wasting my time but to me an Emergency Department is for that, an EMERGENCY. I found myself in an immense amount of pain and vomiting anything that went into my mouth. The specialists I see are almost 3 hours away and I would have to go through their Emergency Department. It didn’t make sense to me to drive that far for an “emergency”.

After some discussion, I found myself too weak to argue my point and allowed them to drive the 3 hours to Cleveland. Once there, the doctors gave me pain and nausea medication via IV and had me try to drink water. The idea was that if I could hold that down, then I could potentially be well enough to go home. I tried it and almost as soon as I thought it was down… it came back up and the pain increased from the wretching.

At that point I was admitted to the GI wing of the hospital. It was after midnight by the time I was settled into a room and the on call doctor just continued the Emergency room orders until the GI team could evaluate me and put a plan in action for me. The next morning a team of 4 doctors came in and after many questions, reviewing tests that have been done, and what treatments have failed… they determined it was time for a feeding tube and scheduled me for the tube that same day.

Now I know it’s not the end all, and to be honest I figured this was my next step anyways…but I was not mentally prepared for what it’s like to have a tube go up my nose, down my throat, through my stomach and into my small intestine. I’ve known what has happened to my body and the pain I’ve been in, but being attached to the actual feeding tube made me hit reality a bit harder and made my thoughts a bit darker. The biggest thought that stuck with me was, “Without this, am I literally starving to death?”

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After a few days in the hospital, on the feeding tube, my team of doctors felt comfortable discharging me as long as I kept the tube in and followed up with the specialist and surgeon the next week. I was set up with a home nurse and supplies were dropped off for me.

On Wednesday 4/29, I saw the specialist and the surgeon. They were both very nice and explained everything very well so that my family and I could understand what the plan of attack would be. I was given a new medication called Buspar and still have the feeding tube up my nose for now, but pending on the insurance, I will be scheduling a surgery for a Gastric Pacemaker and a more permanent feeding tube.

As always grey skies.. but I have my ray of sunshine (surgery that might actually work).

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