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Since Dad has his right lung drained things are looking up…as up as they can look. The fluid is caused by the chemo and we hope that no cancer cells will be found in this 1 1/2 litre of fluid. He is only using O2 when he rests at night…for the “healing” effect it has. He gets a bit short of breath when the humidity is high but other than that…he feels better. His BP remains a bit low and the PT/INR is an ongoing lab to check and change the coumadin.
Dad’s hair is now coming back in. His fingernails and toenails are brownish and now growing out.
One wonders…now that the hair and the fingernails are growing will the cancer start in again??
Time will tell. For now we enjoy the fact that Dad can breath without assistance

Mom called the oncology office on Tuesday and said that Dad wasn’t feeling better and she wondered if the other lung could be scheduled to be drained as soon as possible. She got a call on Tuesday, from one of the nurses (surprise…no Dr call), who explained that Dad needed a PT/INR drawn, that he had an appointment to get the lung drained at 1pm on Thursday at the hospital.
Then, she got a call later Wednesday afternoon explaining that due to Dad’s PT/INR being too high and that it was too late to “thicken” the blood with Vitamin K, Dad was to be at the radiology center for an infusion of platelets at 9 am and then he was to see the oncologist at her office at 11:15 and that he was still tentatively scheduled for the thorecentesis at 1pm.
So, we got to the radiology department at 9am and found that not only was Dad supposed to have 3 units of platelets but that the nurses there are AWESOME and CARE about patients and their families. I cannot tell you how exceptionally nice it was to finally meet someone with compassion and empathy. It made me want to cry. Dad was actually assessed and monitored and cared for…by the people who worked for the facility. The staff made all the necessary phone calls and arrangements for us and it felt great! They even offered to make mom and I lunch (we declined) but my God how wonderful. Dad almost slept through the entire infusion. His O2 sats were 79 to 83 on room air and he was set up on oxygen and did he sleep! He tolerated the fluids well and as soon as they were done we headed up to “see the Dr”.
yah right
You guessed it. We did not see the Dr. In fact, we did see the NP and she gave Dad a “thorough exam” NOT and was about to send us out the door as fast as she could so we “wouldn’t be late for the procedure”…in fact I had to say…Hey…is Dad’s PT/INR okay? Will they actually do the procedure when we get there? When in fact, the only reason we were at the Dr office in the first place was the fact that we were told that since Dad’s blood was too thin he had to have platelets and then have the PT/INR rechecked and then and only then after seeing the Dr could we for sure go and have the damn procedure anyway. But did she EVEN REVIEW THE LAB REPORTS BEFORE SEEING US?? HELL NO!! HELL NO!! AND HELL NO!!
I am sick of that place and their total lack of concern.
So is Mom.
Well, we got to go and have the right lung drained finally. Another 1 1/2 liters of fluid drawn off. Dad tolerated it well.
Mom and I are in agreement…We want to switch to the Cancer Center for all of Dad’s treatments.
A little bit of kindness goes a hell of a long way.

We thought we might see a Dr today.
Just because Dad had an invasive procedure…a right thorecentesis and had around 1 litre and 1/2 of fluid drained is obviously no reason to expect that a Dr. should want to see him.
At least the nurse called us and told us that there were no cancer cells in the fluid and the CT scan showed no obvious growth in the tumor.
We thought we would be scheduled to have the other lung drained this week. The CT scan showed bilateral pleural effusion…large pleural effusions. But…no. No Dr…no appointment. Just a lot of hurry up and get ’em through.
This centre is starting to really disappoint me.

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We are going to Kearney tomorrow.
Oncology appointment.
Zymota again.
The CT scan last week, showed no new growth, fluid in both lungs. I don’t know the cytology of the 2 1/2 litres of fluid they drained off yet. I forgot to ask them to send that lab report. I guess we’ll find out tomorrow.
Dad’s weight is down to 163. His lower legs remain edematous and potentially a source of breakdown. He has a bit of an ache in his left calf tonight. Probably a phlebitis or a clot. He always seems to get the worst of the deal. He remains on 80mg of Lasix daily. The fluid doesn’t seem to be dissipating much. In fact it seems worse to me. He isn’t using his o2 much though. He is much less short of breath. He looks skinny though, muscle wasted…gaunt. Appetite remains somewhat poor. Guess we’ll see what tomorrow brings.

August 2006

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