Monday, January 15, 2018

Hospital Stay

As you may have noticed, I dropped off the Blog. Since the apparent disappearance of recent
Blog posts, I have not idea where I left off. So, I'll start with my hospital visit.

New Year's Day I was taking a shower. When I was drying off, I ripped open the scab I got from that ill-fated hayride with Amanda and Keldon back in October. Puss shot out and I thought, "Uh oh..."

So, I cleaned it up, washed it out with peroxide, painted it with Betadine and bandaged it up. I carried on with the New Year's Day festivities.

But, when I woke up on January 2nd, I found it had leaked through the bandage and was on my sheets. Annoyed, I pulled off the sheets and the blanket and washed them. I put them in the dryer and went in the bedroom. That's when I saw that the bloody puss had leaked through the sheet and got on the mattress pad. So, I threw that into the washer.

I went to take my shower and saw my leg had bright red streaks in it! I thought, "Holy shit!" I knew driving to Clinton Township would be difficult, if not impossible, so I decided to go to the Emergency Room at St. Mary's in Livonia. I figured I'd get a shot or a prescription and come back home.

However, the ER doctor said he thought I should stay overnight and get IV antibiotics. I wasn't prepared for that, but I figured the cat had water and food, so I could stay overnight. The only problem was that I didn't have a charger for the phone.

So, I asked Courtney (Mike Esper's wife) if she would post on Facebook that I was in the hospital with a dying phone. She said she thought Mike had an old charger and volunteered to bring it up to me.

So, she was there as they were checking me in. The guy said he had some questions to ask me.

Sidebar: I was in my bed when they asked my new roommate some incredibly embarrassing questions. I figured that was where this guy was going...

So, I asked if there were any questions that might embarrass Courtney. Courtney (being Courtney) said, "Like, when was the last time you had sex?" I laughed and replied in years.

Sidebar: I always think of the best lines AFTER I need them. What I should have said was, "Alone or with others?"

Anyway, the next morning, I met the Infectious Disease doctor. She looked at my leg and said it had to be opened up, a culture taken and it washed out. I said okay and she said she'd have an orthopedic surgeon do it.

BTW, they had me on three different antibiotics: Clindamycin, vancomycin and pipercillin/tazobactam.

So, the surgeon came in and ordered an ultrasound, x-rays and a cat scan. They refused to do an MRI because I couldn't tell them exactly what kind of greenfield filter I had, even though I explained I had like three MRI with my spine problems. They said it was their policy!

It went rapidly downhill from there...

I had two operations scheduled that never happened. The surgeon eventually came back and said he wasn't up to working on me. He said, "I do hips and I do knees, but I have never seen a patient as f*cked up as you!"

He said I needed to have my artificial knee cut out, and a rod put in (so my leg would be just straight) and then, if the antibiotics worked and there was enough bone left, a new knee installed. If not, they would have to amputate my leg above the knee.

He recommended a doctor at Providence hospital.

Everybody assumed they would take me by ambulance to Providence, so I was trying to figure out how to get the truck home.

However, there was some problems with getting antibiotics. Because the doctor at Providence (David Markel) wanted to see me in his office, first. So, I stayed in the hospital on Monday.

There was a timing issue on Tuesday. I needed to be there for a 7:00 p.m. antibiotic treatment, but I needed to be home between 7:00 -10:00 p.m to sign for the home antibiotics. They solved that problem by delivering the antibiotics to the hospital.

The nurse's aid wheeled me out after a sweet hug from my nurse, Janis.

Sidebar: I always fall in love with one of my nurses during a hospital stay. This time it was Janis.

It was remarkably warm outside, so the nurse's aid (I forget his name) walked out to the truck with me, carrying all my crap. He said he would wait to see if the truck would start (it had been below zero for days and he was worried about the truck's battery). But, it fired right up and I drove home on I-96.

Sidebar: Night driving with these cataracts can be a bitch (especially when there are five lights surrounding each stoplight). So, its easier to go on the expressway. I just stay in the right lane and go with the traffic.

I got home. I re-washed the mattress pad (it had been sitting, damp) for a week. The cat wouldn't let me alone (apparently, Amanda's visit, and she likes Amanda, wasn't enough) When it dried, I made up the bed and went to sleep...

Okay, so as far as visitors, I already told you Courtney was there. She came again, later. Vicky showed up twice. Once with Evy and Yanessa and then alone on last Sunday, just before she left for Ecuador. Amanda only was able to come once, but she did go to the house and give the cat a big bowl of water (thanks, kid). My daughter Melissa came early on Sunday. with a big bag of stuff (books, puzzles, coloring books with colored pencils, etc.)

My brothers all volunteered to come, but I told them that was a long drive and silly. It wasn't like I was dying.

I think that's everything about my hospital stay that I remember.

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