Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A different view of life...

from the 9th floor of the hospital, lol!

There's enough sky up here that even on a dreary day it's nice,  but yesterday as the last storm broke up and the clouds were roaring off to the southwest at 60 or 70 it was really something to watch! Or perhaps just being here to see it heightened the beauty...

3:30am Monday morning, about 3 hours after I dozed off I woke up from dreaming of playing trumpet again. My chest ached, I figured I'd been breathing "wrong" and sat for a minute, doing my "pursed lip breathing" to get things under control, and the pain in my chest seemed to ease a bit. I went to the bathroom, came back and slipped my mask on and did some more pursed lip breathing then, feeling better, laid down.

The pain went from a 4 to about 8.5 immediately and I sat back up, tried breathing some more and it didn't ease and while I wondered if something was wrong with my oxygen concentrator I shook Dottie awake and asked her to get my oximeter. When she did, it read "99" but said my pulse was 147, then 110 something, then back up to 150 something...very erratic! I left it on, motioned for the blood pressure cuff; she got it and it "errored" for BP but confirmed the erratic pulse. The pain was still about 8, and I had her start getting me clothes; we grabbed my portable oxygen bottle and headed for the emergency room.

They admitted me, started drugs to control the arrhythmia and some heavy antibiotics to control either pneumonia or bronchitis. Within a few minutes the pain eased, though the numbers were still all over, clear up into the 180's at some points. Within a couple of hours I started coughing up lovely yellow green stuff as well.

After I was out of ER and admitted a cardiologist came to visit and explained that the IPF already restricts how much blood the heart can send to my lungs; an infection on top of that restricts it even further and when my lungs tried to choke off the bloodflow they didn't need my heart didn't know what to do, hence the arrhythmia. It finally went back into rhythm about 24 hours after it started and I'm down to one IV with a blood thinner in it; they've started an oral med to control the arrythmia and I'll be going home sometime Thursday after they give me the 5th dose of the oral medication to control the arrhytmia and run an EKG to make sure it works perfectly.

Until then I'm hanging out up here in the rarified air, reading and (now) writing a bit and perhaps digging out that mp3 player in a few minutes, thanks to the care packages my wife and son have dropped off last night and today.

I wasn't sure I'd see the sunrise yesterday, and got a bonus one today; I'm looking forward to each!

May the world be kind to each of you!

alan

4 comments:

robin andrea said...

Yike, Alan. That must have been incredibly scary and uncomfortable. Glad they have it under control now. Sending you best wishes for speedy and excellent recovery.

ryssee said...

Hi Alan,
Just stopping by to catch up on your blog-so sorry to read the news about your health. Yet with just about every post you have something positive to say which is why I like reakding your blog in the first place.
My best wishes are with you, your family and your friends while you get through this. Keep the posts coming.
Oh, and Happy Spring. :-)
Laryssa

Doris said...

That all sounded a bit scary. (((Hugs))) to you my dear and enjoy each day as it unfolds. xxx

Calamity Jen said...

Holy crow, Alan. How frightening! I'm glad that you'll be heading home today and I hope that you are feeling much better.

Like Laryssa, I always appreciate your focus on the positives in your life.

Jenni