Saturday, June 28, 2008


Day +395

I finally got admitted into the hospital somewhere around 3am and by that time Chris and I were just happy to be able to go to sleep. My night nurse was very accommodating and went through my paper work as quickly as he could. I managed to get 4 solid hours of sleep before someone came in to do my vitals. It was all down hill from there on the sleep front, so I'm a bit bleary eyed.

My rounding physician was Dr. Khouri. I haven't had any prior experience with him, but know other patients who are his regulars, and they all love him. I found him to have a good sense of humor, which I find is important in dealing with me on this level. He questioned the need to have me admitted, which I supported. I'm not having any sort of medical "crisis" and was complaining to Chris that I probably could have been seen in clinic next week. Now, considering that all of the parties involved were erring on the side of caution, I have to concede that everyone was acting in my best interest. My doctors were being aggressive in the face of a mystery illness, and I'm sure most patients in this situation can appreciate that.

Dr. Khouri suspects that I'll have a bone marrow aspiration in a few days just to rule some things out and get a clearer idea of what we may be dealing with. The node in my neck has virtually disappeared and the one in front of my ear feels a wee bit smaller. That could be my imagination, though.

I'm hooked up to an IV via the traditional route: there's a big needle cradled in the crook of my right elbow. It gets occluded every time I bend my right arm slightly and sets the IV pump's alarm off. I managed to knit with straight arms for about an hour before I gave up. Even that made the alarm go off every few minutes. I'm sure I shouldn't, but I turn the alarm off myself. I'm not medically trained, but after nearly a year of dealing with the beeping little monsters, I've learned how to program them on a very rudimentary level. Occlusion in the line is the only fix I'll attempt. I'll leave the rest of it up to the pros.

I'm receiving one very exclusive and designer drug via the IV. Even Chris was impressed when the nurse came in to hook it up. You may or may not have heard of it: Saline.

I made the argument last night that since no one thought that I'd be receiving any drugs intravenously that perhaps they could hold off in putting an extra hole in my arm. The ER doctor felt that I would probably get some sort of drug therapy, so I lost that round. After Dr. Khouri elected to treat me with a broad spectrum oral antibiotic, I tried the argument again on my assigned nurse. No dice. Where's Charles Bronson when you need him?

I'm being kept through the weekend for observation, although Dr. Khouri indicated that if we had been local, he would have discharged me since there's no real reason for me to be here. I'm not running a fever and haven't had one since my mystery illness at the beginning of the month. All of my regular bodily functions are normal and my appetite was excellent up until this afternoon. When I was confronted by "room service" food my appetite went into hiding. I still ate my cardboard sandwich and potato salad and even ordered something else an hour later. It was just as bad, but that didn't stop me from eating it.

I have noticed that a few changes have been made to the menu. Chris's favorite cookie has been banished to be replaced by almond cranberry crunch. The "beef medallions in brown sauce" have disappeared. Soft tacos are still available for order, but if I were you, I wouldn't. It occurred to me that hard tacos never make it into the rotation. When I informed Chris that the menu was sadly tacopenic, he snickered and told me to order a quesadilla.

So, to summarize this post: please don't worry. The doctors and nurses who have seen me in the last 24 hours aren't.


Lee said...

Well... welcome back to Houston! I hope your visit is quick and easy. But, we do have some of the best saline this side of the Mississippi.

Ann said...


Houston has the best saline on either side of the Mississippi. Great to hear from you! :)

pj said...

I was so worried. Can't you send out for some decent food, and maybe a margarita hold the salt since you're getting plenty of that? I hope you can sleep tonight.

ML said...

hi ann..

hope u r doing fine with the saline..hehe