Today, James had the drain removed from his head. It was put there after the hematoma was drained yesterday. He has 15 staples on the side of his head. The neurosurgeon seemed completely unimpressed with the hematoma. It had been 16 mm on Jan. 1, shrank to 9mm, and the next time they checked it, it had grown to 18 mm so they wanted to drain it. (Initially they were going to do that during the facial surgery -both procedures were cancelled last Wednesday because James dropped his O2 saturation).
James can see people in the hall, and tracks them walking past the glass door. He wiggled his toes again with no effort for the DR. He's had a bit of a fever, but not too high.
He keeps trying to mouth words but we are understanding very little, so he is frustrated.
Day of rest and recovery.
Sunday, January 13, 2013
Today wound care came and washed and redressed his arm. He has 4 long lines of staples. Maybe they will take them out today, she said.
His facial bone surgery is set for Wednesday the 16th.
He asked for his phone!! I don't know what on earth he wants with it though. He can't talk, because of the trach, but he mouths the words and we try (pathetically) to figure out what he's saying.
He was pretty mad this evening- saying "get me out- get me up." He tried with all his might to sit up and got his shoulders about 4 inches off the bed.
Another day of rest, albeit grumpy.
Monday, January 14, 2013
This morning James went to a CT scan of his brain. The neurosurgeon came in and asked him to count his fingers, which James did with no problem. We were explaining how James was frustrated by us not figuring out what he was saying. We tried to use the ABC chart, communication chart the hospital provided, but James seemed to be saying that he couldn't see the letters well enough to use. Also, his fingers are sort of stiff in the rest/curled position and he can't point to well.
Wound care came in today and looked at his arm. She washed it and removed all the staples on the lower part of his arm, and every other staple on the outer portion of his upper arm. All of the staples on the inside of his upper arm were removed. All of the cuts sealed with staples are from incisions made to set the bones with pins and rods and plates and nuts and bolts. Or whatever they use.
Also she removed all the staples- I think less than 10- from his knee and thigh where they fixed his femur. I don't know how they did such huge work on his femur with such a small incision and such huge long cuts on his arm. The cut on the back of his bicep was not from surgery, but was an (evidently) awful injury from the wreck or being removed from the wreck.
With James being awake, both aware and looking around, I began to be concerned about the sympathetic opthalmia they warned me was a risk when he was at Seton. I told the DR to tell the big-wig fancy eye DR that James was awake and aware. I wanted her to know that not only was he able to be told about his eye, and maybe make a decision, but also that he was awake and his eye was sending signals. (see sympathetic opthalmia in "New Vocab" tab.)
James is restless.
The facial surgeon told James about the different incisions he is using to protect the nerves in his face. Essentially, he is drawing a zig-zag line across the top of James' head, from ear to ear, and peeling his forehead down to access the broken facial bones. He also goes up in the space between his upper molars and his cheek (on the left side). Also he makes an incision inside the eyelid or under the eye (like where "black circles" form when you're tired), depending.
The surgery will be between 6-10 hours long.