Friday, October 23, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 10

Both Grandpa and Lauren have been recovering. Grandpa Ottley had a doctor appointment this past week and was given a good report. However, that same day he was experiencing extreme discomfort. He woke up that night with pain in his back and arm as well as felt lightheaded and cold sweats. The doctor wasn't sure what the issue may have been but by later in the day it seemed to go away and hasn't happened since. Lately he has been feeling tired and has not had much energy. The doctor feels like he should be able to make a full recovery and also be able to go back to work. It will still be many weeks or months before that happens however.

Lauren has been doing great. She has all her bandages off and is back to school. She had a field trip today to the new hospital in Riverton. I don't think it was too exciting for her given all the hospitals she has been at this year. The teacher wanted to take the class there so that they would know that it isn't a scary place. As for now, we are just going to be sending photos to Dr. Lewin every few weeks and make sure that she is healing well.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 9

Grandpa Ottley has been resting since coming home from the hospital yesterday. It has been much more comfortable for him at home versus the hospital. He has a lot of medications he has to take daily and is limited in what physical activities he can do. He is glad to be home. His vision in his left eye is still poor from the stroke and we are hoping that it will heal itself and he will be back to 100% again.

Lauren returned back home last night and is doing well. The doctor examined her yesterday and felt that everything is looking great. She has a protective cup over her ear that she must wear for 5 days. She will probably be able to go back to pre-school tomorrow. This should be the last surgery for this year. She may need additional jaw distraction in the future and will also have some orthodontic work done to help with the jaw as well.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 8

Looks like Grandpa Ottley will be coming home today from the hospital. He will need 24 hour care for the next little while as well as have a therapist visit with him to continue his rehab.

Lauren is going to Disneyland today. Mom doesn't want to overdue it with her so we will see how she does.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 7

Another good day for both our patients. Grandpa had the remaining of the tubes removed and has been eating well. He does physical activity each day and is getting stronger. He may be discharged as soon as tomorrow. This is amazing considering where he was at a week ago. He will be able to rest at home and they will be provide some therapy sessions at home for him.

Lauren is also doing well. She is still a bit gimpy after the surgery but she was able to go to a movie today with mom. Tomorrow they are going to try a day at Disneyland. Friends of ours are down there so it will be good for them to meet up. They will be coming home Wednesday night. She has one more doctor's appointment on Wednesday afternoon in Beverly Hills.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 6

Last night I visited with Grandpa Ottley and he was doing very well. He is still catching up on sleep and is getting stronger. He has been moved out of the ICU and is on the 4th floor rehab unit . He is in room 425. The doctor came in last night and felt he is recovering quickly now and will have most if not all the remaining tubes removed today. He will be doing some physical rehabilitation and depending on how well he responds, he may be released soon. He says his vision is starting to improve and that is a good sign after having the stroke. Visitors are now welcome but the hospital would to limit them to two at a time.

Lauren is recovering well after surgery. She was a bit sore yesterday and mostly stayed at the hotel. We hope she rebounds quick enough that she may be able to go to Disneyland for at least one of the days.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 5

Good news again with Grandpa Ottley. I spoke with the nurses in the morning and they all told me how much he slept the night before and that he was a different person. I was able to visit him later in the evening and we talked for about two hours. He seem very much back to being Rollie again. He is still confused about everything that has happened the past two weeks. Many of the delusions he has had he thought were real. We spent most of the talking about them and letting him know they didn't happen. He seemed relieved to know they weren't. It will probably take him some time to sort out everything. His white blood cell count is slowly coming down and if it continues, he will probably be released from the ICU and moved to the rehab building next to the ICU. His vision is still affected by the stroke and he will have a lot of rehab to do to strengthen his body and adjust his vision. We hope that his vision is restored back to normal. The hospital staff wanted me to mention he can have visitors now and in the rehab center but only two at a time and no visitors under the age of 14.

As for Lauren, her surgery was a success yesterday. Dr. Lewin was very happy that the infection was not a problem and she could complete everything she wanted to do in Stage II. She repositioned Lauren's ear and placed new skin grafts over the framework. There were two graft sites she took from. One from her other ear and another from her stomach. The stomach area will be the most painful for her in the next two days and they have given her a device that pumps local anesthetic to the area for the next few days. They also gave her some fat injections around her cheek and jaw to even out her symmetry. They had a hard time finding any fat from her stomach to use for the injection. Lucky her. She also was able to finally get her ears pierced. All in all it was a long day for Becky and Lauren.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 4

Well so far we have had two days of good news. I spoke with the nurse and Grandpa is doing pretty well today. She said he slept most of the night and since he has woke up this morning they have been doing some physical activities. He has been up walking around and doing other exercises. He is not restrained anymore and seems more calm. They are still concerned with his white blood cell count being high. They are unable to find the cause, but it has been slowly coming down. If that is taken care of he will probably be moved to the rehab facility.

Lauren is currently at the hospital in Beverly Hills and will be going in for surgery soon. Dr. Lewin's mentor Dr. Reinisch examined her yesterday and feels like what she has is not an infection but rather a pocket that developed with her skin graft. This is good news because it may mean she won't need any additional surgery and that the Stage II procedure can be fully completed. It will all depend on how well the surgery goes and what Dr. Lewin would like to do going forward. The surgery is scheduled for 10:45 AM Utah time and should be about 4 hours. I will try to put an update on here later with the results.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 3

Good news for both Grandpa and Lauren. There was a big difference in Grandpa Ottley today than yesterday. He seemed more relaxed and comfortable. He is still a bit delusional, but compared to last night he was a complete turn around. The neurologist visited while we were there. She said he has suffered a small stroke to the right rear area of the brain. This could of occurred during surgery or after and she is unable to know exactly when it happened. The main symptom he is suffering is vision is limited in his left eye. She said this is supporting of where he had the stroke. The good news is she feel he will start to recover. He has a chance of his vision returning but will need extensive rehabilitation to either regain his vision or adjust to not having it. They hope to get him out of the ICU soon and into a more comfortable room on another floor of the hospital. He seemed to be sleeping on and off during our visit which is also wonderful to see.

As for Lauren, I got word from Becky that her and Lauren arrived safely and checked into their hotel room. They are 3 miles from Disneyland so I think Lauren is anxious to go again. Lauren got sick on the flight because of the antibiotics she was prescribed to take and didn't have much of a breakfast to wash it down. Dr. Lewin at the appointment was much more positive about her situation now that she has seen her ear in person. She is feeling good that they have caught it early and will be able to treat it without replacement. She may still need another surgery in the future as a follow up, but they hope to do as much of the stage II procedure that they planned on. Lauren will meet with the doctors again tomorrow before she has the surgery on Friday. It should be about a 4 hours procedure on Friday.

Grandpa and Lauren: Update 2

Lauren and Becky left this morning for California. They will be there for the next 8 days and the surgery will be on Friday. The doctor hopes the infection is not so extensive that she can save the ear. Otherwise, she may have to start over with new framework. This was to be her last surgery but now she may need another trip to California in the future. The rest of the family and I are staying home and taking care of everything else.

Grandpa Ottley update is not good news. He has continued to be delirious and was not making improvements. They did a CT scan yesterday and found that he has suffered a stroke. We don't yet know how severe or what this means to his recovery. The neurologist will review the scan today and I hope to have more information after that. The nurses said he didn't sleep much again last night. When I left last night, his eyes were closed and he seemed to be sleeping but the rest of his body couldn't stay still. He looked much more exhausted. He isn't speaking as much now which may be a cause of lack of sleep.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Grandpa and Lauren Update

Grandpa had a lot of visitors yesterday and seemed to be about the same. He is physically strong but he is still hallucinating and is very delusional. The doctors say that he may have these symptoms for the months to come. However, they hope that he will start to clear his head in the upcoming week. One of the biggest issues is lack of sleep. He was given something last night to help, but it didn't work. He has probably gotten less than 8 hours sleep over the past 5 days.

As for Lauren, we got a surprise last night as well. Her ear looks like it is infected. The doctor told us to call right away if we saw any signs. We called Dr. Lewin and she wants to move her October 23rd surgery up to this Friday. There is concern that maybe during the last surgery for her jaw two weeks ago she picked up an infection. We are frantically making travel plans. Due to everything that has happened, Becky will be taking Lauren to California and I will stay behind. She will be there with her from the 7th through the 14th. The surgery is scheduled for the 9th.

We are asking any friends or family to fast this Sunday for Grandpa Ottley. We would also like to include Lauren now as well.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Grandpa Ottley: Update 8

Grandpa has been doing well physically. He has been up walking around and sitting up more. The concern now is his mental stability. He has been very delusional the past few days and they attribute it to him slowing getting off all the post op medication. It is frustrating to see him like this and not be able to talk to him. He has been having hallucinations and gets confused about where he is at. Other times, he seems as though he knows exactly what is going on. I know he hasn't been getting much sleep and I have talked to the hospital staff about getting him some sustained rest. Last night he got about 4 hours of off and on sleep. Since he is still in the ICU, visitation is difficult. I think until he starts coming around mentally, it would be good to limit any visits.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Grandpa Ottley: Update 7

It has been over a week now since the heart attack and surgery. Last night, Grandpa was much more alert and calm. At times he still would get fidgety and a bit delusional. The nurse and doctor said this is common and is sometimes referred to as ICU delirium or "pump" head. Many times after bypass surgery, the patients demonstrate this tendency because of the lack of sustained sleep they have had, the medications they are taking, and the energy the body uses to heal. After speaking with the nurse this morning, they said he slept well and is showing really good signs of recovery. They would like to remove his chest tube today and have some evaluations done to verify if he can now have water or liquids.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Grandpa Ottley: Update 6

Good news today! Grandpa has had the breathing tube removed. Last night watching him have to struggle with the tube was very disheartening. He has built up a lot of fluid in his lungs so they have wanted to keep it in until he had gotten stronger. The nurse told me he demonstrated his strength by kicking him in the head the other night. Last night I saw him wear himself out sitting up in a chair trying to take the breathing tube out and take off his restraints. I kept thinking he was analyzing the problem as a mechanic and find a way to untie himself. Now that the tube is out, he can talk and communicate better. He is not able to have any water yet until his throat has had some time to heal. The nurse felt that as soon as the breathing tube was out he will recover much quicker and move out of the ICU soon. We hope that is true. He will be able to have more visitors once he is out of the ICU. Thanks for all your prayers and thoughts during this time.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Grandpa Ottley: Update 5

Last night when I left Grandpa Ottley, he was doing about the same. The balloon is out and is able move around more freely. However, the breathing tube remains and it may be a day or two until that can be removed. Last night he wanted to pull it out, which the nurse said would be very bad and they would have to put it back in. His hands are restrained so he can't reach the tube. He is still medicated but mostly to reduce the anxiety. They try to have him sit up multiple times during the day to rehab and get some of the fluid in his lungs expelled. The hope is to remove the tube tomorrow if all parameters are met.