Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Occtober 24: Update

The last couple of days have been marked with both success and difficulty.

Yesterday turned out to not be as troublesome as we expected. The Grand Round went well. They opened up all of Jeff's bandages and surveyed his wounds and made several determinations. The first thing that they determined is that they will not remove his synthetic grafts. They cut holes in to the layers of the grafts to allow the infection to drain out but they determined that that will be sufficient treatment so as to allow the grafts to remain in place so that they can continue to help his wounds heal.

They also determined that his back is looking very good and will not need surgery.

They have scheduled him for skin grafting surgery for the remaining upper arm, and legs on Monday, October 29. If all goes as planned, he could be released as soon as the following week. I can't even believe that we're even having discussions about a release date yet, even if they are preliminary.

Today was more difficult because he did not have a nurse who was qualified in burn care. I guess that's a mixed development because the great news is that he does not need a burn ICU nurse. The bad news is that because she was not a burn care specialist, her care was substantially less qualitatively, and she caused him a significant amount of trouble, pain and distress simply due to her own ignorance of his kind of needs. The charge nurse assured us that he will not be scheduled with her again. But as a result, he's really taxed today.

One piece of good news is that he walked today! He walked the other day from his bed to his door of his room but today he walked out of his room and down the hall a few doors, and back!

Tomorrow he may come off his telemetry machine, which would allow him to get out of his room in a wheelchair and in to the other parts of the hospital and courtyard. That would really lift his spirits because then he could visit with more than two people at a time (something he keeps asking for) and he could get a change of scenery which would help combat the sense of stir craziness that he is struggling with.

One special prayer request is for Jeff in the coming days as they're trying to wean him off of the pain medications. Obviously we want him to feel as little pain as possible, but one of his medications is narcotic so we don't want him to grow too dependent on it. Would you pray for wisdom for the nurses as they determine the balance between pushing him to a healthy point and when enough is enough and he's reached his real limit and just needs help. And would you pray for comfort for Jeff as he struggles to adjust to the increase pain sensitivity?

I want to extend a thank you on behalf of Jeff to everyone who has sent him cards and voicemails. They've been of such great encouragement to him and his wall grows more decorated every day, which helps comfort him especially when he is alone. I'm sure Jeff will thank you all when he is able but I wanted to let you know how appreciative he is.

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