Hi Everyone! Ok! This is my first shot @ trying this - Shalon has gotten me involved as I enjoyed her site so much! I'm hoping I can keep up and am doing this right! Maybe I'll graduate to including pictures later! I tried earlier, but not sure I know what I'm doing yet!
I was so ready to go to CO for this procedure - seems that darned avm acts up right before I go back for a treatment! The lower left eye area was all puffed out and I was just having a hard time functioning! I missed Thur/Fri. of work - but I knew I just needed to get some rest before the trip! While we were on the first part of our flight - I was wanting to take some medication for pain and couldn't find my meds! I think I noticed that when we landed in Houston. From Houston our flight was headed to Alb. NM, and while we were there, I called ahead and talked to Dr. Yakes patient coordinator to tell her to please have some prescriptions ready for when I arrived! Sitting in the middle seat and not having any Xanex was not helping my situation one bit! I felt like running up and down the isle of the plane! Come to find, I did have my meds with me though! I noticed them @ the car rental place in my tote bag!
We arrived w/just enough time to pick up our car rental and head over to Swedish Medical, as we had a consultation w/Dr. Yakes! We got to meet Eric - Dr. Yakes new P.A. I had brought a list of questions w/me - but Dr. Yakes seemed vague about the entire thing. He says we are making progress and we can't stop in the middle of the war! Well of course not! I can't imagine anyone else taking care of this but Dr. Yakes! We just have to keep after this avm!
After seeing Dr. Yakes, we go check in to the hotel. Just to put our luggage in the room and start heading downtown to Dr. Reeds office - again, he is the head of Voice and Swallow Inst. in CO - and he checks my airways to make sure all is well before Dr. Yakes goes ahead w/the emoblization the next day! Dr. Reed was very happy w/what he saw and he also prescribed an ointment I need to maybe heal my ear area quicker. I still have to wear the moist wound care healing dressing on my left cheek from when Dr. Yakes got me w/24 cc's of alcohol last November! That area is finally healing well!
Once we were done w/Dr. Reed - Mark told me he wasn't feeling well. I called the patient coordinators for Dr. Yakes and they referred us to the Rocky Mountain Urgent Care center. I just wanted to make sure and get Mark checked out to see that he was ok! By the time we did all that - we were so ready for dinner! Went to our favorite pizza place (Ricos) near the hospital, but it was already closed! Went on to Pappadeaux and ordered our dinner. We hadn't been there but 15-20 minutes when I felt something on my neck. Yup - I was bleeding. Can't we even go out for a decent dinner w/out having to deal w/avm stuff? We hurried to the ladies room where Mark put a piece of surgiseal on my ear, so we got it under control. We had been going all day on 2 hours sleep, so by this time, we were exhausted! Went back to the hotel and crashed!
Up early the next morning to get to Swedish by 7:30am. Got there, preregistered and sat in the waiting area. Very soon, one of the nurses says they are ready for me! I get into the hospital gown, etc. .... and one nurse tried a couple of times to get my IV going, but she failed. Another nurse took over and finally did get it going on my other arm - OUCH! Another of Dr. Yakes P.A.'s (Rhonda) asked the nurse something like, "Ok - does this mean we're clear for take off"? Or something to that effect. The nurse gave Rhonda a blank look and Rhonda goes, "come on people, get w/the military talk"! "If I say, the Eagle has landed" that should tell you Dr. Yakes is here"! That's Rhonda for ya! Anyhoo .... as we sat and waited, and waited and waited for my turn to be taken into OR - we could hear this terrible screaming down the hall! Apparently, Dr. Yakes had a couple of children as patients and they were reacting to the alcohol in their system! It was just awful hearing them - but I would have thought that some pain meds would knock them out? I brought Saba w/me of course, so we watched The Today Show while we waited for my turn to go to OR! Finally about noon time, it was my turn! I remember thinking as the anesthesiologist put the mask over my face .... "next thing I know, I'll be waking up hearing the nurse asking me to breathe"!
I hear Dr. Yakes gave me 9 1/2 cc's of alcohol this time and I had a bleed during the embolization, so I think he stopped @ that amount.
Well, I woke up feeling pretty good, actually! I had my favorite recovery room nurse Rick - he is awesome! He makes sure I am comfortable above all else and is funny too! No angiogram this time, so that was great! Got dinner served in recovery - that was weird and next thing I knew, the nurses on 6th floor were calling to find out where I was! Rick said the computer showed my room wasn't ready - anyway, off I go!
Rhonda Sharp (P.A.) showed up in my room to give me my prescriptions and discharge papers! She knows we like to do this in the evening, that way we can leave @ whatever time we are ready in the morning!
Mark showed up after getting some rest and picking up a few things I needed and we settled in for the night! I wanted to take a shower and wash the blood out of my hair and then I felt lots better! Mark went back to the hotel late that evening to get some rest and I started reading a book Celia had loaned me called Twilight by Stephenie Meyers.
Next morning after Mark showed up w/my favorite White Chocolate Mocha from Starbucks, and we were watching TV enjoying our coffee, when I noticed I was bleeding! I told Mark I was bleeding and I don't think he heard me - I said it louder and the nurse was in the room - in a few seconds, the front of my nightgown was covered in blood. Eeek! We hurried over to the bathroom sink, Mark got the wound care bag and we got the situation under control! I am only the 2nd patient of Dr. Yakes this nurse has had, so she says, "has this happened before"? Uh, yeah - we were pretty calm about it all - we're pretty used to it by now. About 10 minutes later, my cell phone rings and it's Shalon! She and her husband Joshua were downstairs and asked if they could come up to visit! I quickly changed into my regular clothes and was ready by the time Shalon and Josh arrived! It is just so great to meet someone who totally understands what you are going through! The husbands had their bonding experience too, I'm sure, being the caregivers! They didn't have too much time to visit, as Shalon was about to pre-register for her embolization! We hugged and wished each other luck!
Went to pick up several prescriptions, then back to the hotel to reorganize things. Decided to take a drive into Boulder, @ Rhonda's suggestion. We had told her we thought about driving into Estes Park - so we did both! Boulder proved to be just what Rhonda described it as - weird in a funky kind of way. We both liked Estes Park better - lots of shops and beautiful scenery! Did that and then drove back to Denver - ate dinner @ Ricos and then back to the hotel! Mark was already in bed, and I was in the bathroom getting ready for bed, when I had another bleed. Darn! It was ok - nothing we couldn't handle!
I called Shalon that evening to see how she was doing, and she said Dr. Yakes hit her w/15cc's of alcohol and she didn't feel very swollen! My left eye was swollen shut! I had asked Shalon what time their flight left and we both found out we were flying S.West about the same time! Sure enough, we got to meet up one more time @ the airport! and took a couple more photos! Those photos are available for viewing on Shalons site: http://sites.google.com/site/shalonsavm/Home.
As always - our great thanks to all our friends and family that love, pray and support us on this journey! Please check back on my site and Shalons for updates on our progress!
Mark & Cyndi Schuman
P.S. Thanks for making me do this Shalon! I'll try and keep up w/it!
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Posted by Dulce at 4:53 PM