Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Well here it is Wednesday the 25th day of February. Don was supposed to be halfway through his 3rd week of chemo/radiation therapy.  

Yesterday Don was much better, at least emotionally. When I got to the hospital yesterday the drainage from the NG tube was opaque white. This is much better than Green. He had demanded that his surgeon be called. The charge nurse came in and talked to him about this request. She told him that sometimes this change happens but it does not necessarily mean that the blockage has gone away. Eventually the surgeon did come in to see Don. He agreed that the blockage might be gone. He ordered an upper GI series to make sure.

Today the drainage had changed back to green though not quite as dark as it had been a couple of days ago. Don was quite upset about this. He had just been told that he would be going do radiology for the Upper GI studies. He was told 15 minutes and he tends to take things very literally so when 16 minutes had gone by he was upset. I told him that the only time things happen quickly is if it is a true emergency. It takes time for the transporter to arrive to take him to radiology. If all of the transporters are busy it is necessary to wait for the first one to finish with his last transport. Don just wants everything to happen right now. The transporter did arrive and took him to radiology.

When Don came back he was really cranky and wanted pain medicine "right now". So he called the nurse and demanded pain med right now. I connected his NG tube to suction. He began to get some relief but it was slow. The nurse came with the pain med. (He gets IV morphine). I irrigated the NG tube a couple of times. He still had a lot of the barium in his stomach. I am sure this was very uncomfortable. But he did admit that the feeling of fullness was diminishing. I did talk to him about being nicer to the staff. I asked him if anyone had talked to him about the exam. He said no but it looked to him as if nothing was going on through. So I don't know what to think at this point. 

If I get anymore information I will post it. 



  1. Mike and I are following your posts with much interest. It sounds just awful!

    I DO know that "cranky" is way better than "indifferent" and, while it is difficult, it means he is still attentive and aware.

    Our thoughts are with you both.

  2. Thanks for keeping us posted, Sally. So sorry that things are not going as expected/planned. Tell Don we're sending more good thoughts and if YOU need help with anything please let us know.
    Ann Stafford

  3. Sally & Don,

    Gordon never checks his emails, so as I was cleaning his hundreds of emails out tonight I found the link to this blog.

    Like you Sally, as a nurse, the fluid stuff does not bug me, but I surely know how rough it must be for Don (and you) right stressfull! My 81 yr old mother has had two bouts of colon cancer the past two years and despite two major surgeries and two rounds of chemo is doing quite well at this point. BUT it really sucks when you are struggling with the moment. Thanks for keeping this blog, I will let Gordon know whats up..
    Molly Faulkner