Monday, March 21, 2016

Accepting.

As we go further I thought I should disclose that some of these details I had not remembered until I was reminded by my doctors, Sean and my family. The pain, the drugs, really the pain over anything else. It resulted in me being fuzzy, confused and certainly not cleared headed. It has actually only been one week that I've not been in constant pain and so many memories are flooding back.

I thought I should also add that one of the reasons we (Sean and I) choose not to take out the fibroids in 2012 was because we did not have kids. We were advised that because my fibroids were not currently a real "problem" and because there were risks associated with taking them out (infertility being the biggest one) we decided it wasn't worth the risk. Little did we know.

Began writing on 2/13/2016:

If you weren't able to read my last two posts start HERE and then read THIS that way you are not confused with the way I start my next sentence.

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When I got to the hospital I was placed in the ICU as I was in bad shape and needed to be monitored very closely. My doctors were surprised with how low my blood levels were. It was 6.4 and the normal number is 12. There were discussions of me needing a blood transfusion if it stayed that low. I also continued to have temperatures over 102. Overall, my vitals were just not looking good.

The first few nights I could not sleep because anytime I would fall asleep my machines would start beeping like crazy and there was nothing that could be done to stop the beeping. Believe me I asked. I needed help breathing and well, not sleeping was the least of my worries at the time. I was in the ICU for 4 out of the 12 days of my hospital stay and was placed on Dilaudid (stronger than Morphine) through an IV as I was in extreme pain in my leg. I could not lift my left leg at all. It had swelled to almost three times the size of my right leg which was actually also swollen.

I was shortly placed in the care of doctors from interventional radiology, gynecology, gynecology oncology and vascular. However, after the ultrasound of my abdomen, gynecology was discharged as they could not handle the size of my fibroids. Gynecology oncology had to take the lead as they dealt with tumors my size on a daily basis.

Since my vitals were so bad interventional radiology decided to wait until the following day to do the procedure needed on my left leg. The procedure needed was a Catheter-Directed Thrombolysis. I was advised that because my blood clot was so massive they were unsure how long it will take for my body to eventually dissolve and because of this they feared that the blood clot could do damage to the inside of my vein. I was also at a high risk for a pulmonary embolism. The procedure was to quickly break up the blood clot and restore my blood flow. They did advise that this procedure was riskier than taking blood thinners but at this point I had no choice. They would use an X-ray as a guide and a specialist would put a catheter into my vein and work on breaking up the DVT.

Since I was on Heparin now the doctors did not fear that another blood clot would occur as the blood thinners would prevent new clots from forming. On January 19th, a filter was placed (to ensure no clots traveled to my lungs or brain) and I had my first procedure to break up the blood clot in my left leg because even though I was on Heparin it would not be able to dissolve my existing blood clot. I was told that the next day they'll do another ultrasound of my leg to ensure the procedure worked and broke up the clot.

On January 20th, I had another ultrasound of my left leg and it showed that the procedure did not do a thing. This isn't a small procedure either so the fact that the blood clot did not respond baffled my doctors. So I had the procedure done a second time and again nothing. The blood clot was still there and not breaking up. There was another thing they could do to relieve the compression on my vein but because I was on blood thinners it was not recommended and very high risk considering my condition. My doctors all had opinions about it but eventually they all agreed that they had to relieve the compression because what usually took one try was not working. The ultrasound of my left leg revealed the clot as the first day I was admitted. It appeared as though no treatment had been given to me in the time I was in the hospital.

I was going to need surgery to relieve the compression to my vein. I was on blood thinners, kept having fevers which we found out was due to an infection. And I don't think I've mentioned that at this point I had already had 2 blood transfusions.

Regardless of my poor condition my doctors knew this was my only option at this point. This sounds so extra but either I was going to live or I was going to die. I asked what the risks were and was told that it was high risk in my state and that I could die on the table by hemorrhaging. I was then told that if the surgery was not done the compression on my vein would not be relieved and I would get another DVT and might not be so lucky. It was no longer a matter of if but of when.

The thought of going through another DVT scared the heck out of me so I asked what the surgery entailed and this is when I became aware that my doctor was staring at me with such a sad expression on his face. And that is when I knew.

This is getting long so I'll continue very soon.

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I must add that during the whole ordeal I did not once think that my body was failing me. In fact, I had so much more respect and appreciation for my body because it was fighting so hard to stay alive. My vascular doctor told me that I was her youngest patient to be diagnosed with a DVT and not for the regular reasons. Everything was just not how it normally goes with my situation. The thing is that it was never too late for me. Even when the doctors could not believe that something hadn't happened yet or that something shouldn't be like this, it was. And you know what, I may not have been on time but God was on time for me. He knew how long it would take for my diagnosis to happen, how long it would take for me to get to the ER, how long it would take for everything to transpire so He gave me all the time I needed. Nothing more, nothing less. And when I think about it I get goose bumps because I know He was carefully watching me through it all. He had my back. And I know some people might think if He really had your back this wouldn't have happened. I disagree. If He did not have my back I would not be writing this post.

10 comments:

Nylse Esahc said...

I'm so afraid to ask - but I'm hoping everything turned out ok.

Desiree Macke said...

Wow. Faith, this is so incredibly scary. I can only imagine what you went through, and how poor Sean was dealing with this. I'm so glad you're here to share you story. And even more glad to know you're feeling more like yourself again!!
You are so strong, and God is so faithful.

Danielle said...

What a testimony of faith in the great Creator! I know that this has to be so very hard to relive but thank you for letting us in on your condition. Your story could save someone else's life! Continued prayers for healing.

NikG said...

Oh wow, I didn't realize you were having health issues that were this extreme!! So sorry you are going through this, but so glad you are still hear and are able to share your story. Praying for you. <3

Kristen said...

I'm ok reading this now because I know you're ok, but if I knew then I'd be so worried for you! It sounds so scary, but you're definitely right, you were in God's capable hands!

Cece said...

What a scary situation. I'm so glad to know that you have come out on the other side while reading this.

Law_Fal said...

I literally have tears in my eyes reading this. I'm just so grateful you ARE here to share this story and be a living testimony.

Joy B. E. said...

I read this post and was in tears! I am so happy to be reading the post because it meant you are alive to write it. GIRL!!! You are a testament of God's loving mercies.
So thankful for life and your attitude through it all.

Maureen S. said...

Love you Faith. Praying for you!

Nancy said...

I cannot imagine! I know you & Sean were both so scared! I am so thankful to GOD you are ok!