Friday, November 27, 2009

Hospital Stay: Day Two

I couldn't sleep when I got home last night, so I stayed up until 3:00 a.m. drinking wine, playing Bejeweled on Facebook, and listening to two episodes of Criminal Intent.

Woke up at 7:45 a.m.

Probably wasn't a good idea. I tried to have a bit of a nap around 9:00 a.m., but just couldn't do it. Up is up.

So eventually, I dragged my sleep-deprived ass over to the hospital.

No Spouse.

But soon he returned, chagrined because they made him ride around in a wheelchair. He had just come from Ultrasound where they determined there was nothing wrong with his legs.

Then a neurologist came in and questioned him at length about his headaches (This guy thinks they are NOT migraines but, because they begin at night, have more to do with the position of his neck when he sleeps, and you know what? I think the dude is right. But that's another blog entry.) and did a full examination of his reflexes. Determined no brain damage (since there was/is this clot in his lung, and we are now starting to suspect it has been there since 2000, who knows where else clots may have landed?), but tomorrow will be What IS in His Head? Day with MRIs and other scans to make sure. After I left, they did some heart scans and plan to do more and different ones tomorrow.

Blood clots generally form in the legs, which was why they examined his legs. When they break off they land in either the lungs, the kidneys, the heart (causing a heart attack), or the brain (causing a stroke). And one of the tools/tests they use to evaluate if someone has inappropriately clotting blood is called D-dimer.

The doctor at the French clinic ran a D-dimer test on Wednesday night after The Spouse returned from his day in the Russian Hospital. If I understand correctly, a normal reading is below .5 and The Spouse's was .7. Last night the staff at EMC ran another D-dimer, and this time it was 1.3. This suggests to me, expert that I am, that, for whatever reason, there is more clot formation and disintegration going on, and that cannot be good. I mean, I'm guessing that maybe the clot in his lung is breaking down (good), but its residual rubbish is now floating merrily around and could land who knows where (bad).

Good thing he's on anticoagulants now.

I haven't been there for The Chats with the other doctors, but, from what The Spouse reports, they all suggest a strong tone of "Jeez-us! You Dodged THAT Bullet!"

They also believe, based on lengthy probing of The Spouse's medical history, that the chest pain incident in Miami in late 2000 was related to this, as was another chest-pain/trip-to-the-cardiologist event in Bratislava a few years back.

They cannot believe he flew to Paris last week in Cattle Class. Nor that he went to the gym several times this week (he usually goes 6 days/week) and did an hour of cardio each time.

Not that exercise is bad, mind you.

All of this makes me far more creeped out NOW that he is being treated than I was yesterday when he was wandering the streets of Moscow as volatile as Krakatoa in the summer of 1883.

Word today is three- to six-months of treatment. They will not release him until they figure out WHY he has these clots.

I spent the afternoon taking pictures.

The Ostankino Tower in the distance.

Lactated Ringer's Solution . . . yummy.

It's hard to play with your Blackberry with one hand. Here, he was responding to work emails with "I'm hooked up to my IV right now, so you'll have to figure it out without me."

There is a rocket in front of the Armed Forces Museum that you can see from his window.

Comic relief: this was on the way home. I thought the blue neon says "SUSHITERIA,"
but now I think it only says "SUSHITERRA." Not so funny.

This is funny. This is a Spicy Tuna Roll.


hka said...

Three to six months of treatment? will he be able to go back to work? am emailing you too

Luna said...

Jeeze . . .

Kugo said...

Gosh I hope he is going to be alright. I saw your post of Facebook and felt terrible about your situation. Please keep us posted...


Anonymous said...

Wishing you both all the best.

Tina in CT said...

Holy crap! Wishing good news to you and your husband.

Anonymous said...

Good luck!
Hope they are treating him well.

Jen said...

Good Lord! Poor Spouse :( And poor you! Thankfully you have your two lovely girls around. Hang in there!

South Florida real estate blog said...

Just catching up with your blog only to find this disturbing news. My thoughts are with you and your family. I'm curious what with all the debate about healthcare going on here in the US, what kind of coverage do you have there?

The Expatresse said...

Bob: We have AIG, an American policy with a deductible and 20% co-pay. I expect this will cost us about $10,000 out of pocket by the time he gets out of the hospital (possibly Wednesday).

Aunt Becky said...

Holy crap. I wish I were closer so that I could help out. I'm hoping that you're out soon and everything is well and all that good stuff.

The Expatresse said...

Thanks Becky. He certainly has his moments where I'm not there, and he's feeling like crap. It is all being managed, and I feel confident about the treatment, but I also feel bad when I can't be there.

VC said...

You must be so overly tired by now. Do try to have some rest.All the best wishes to you and your husband.

Major Allen Espy said...

sorry about all the health problems. i am enjoying seeing the photos of the hospital room...and the view from the window. interesting. the armed forces museum is top-notch. i would highly recommend it. we found it by accident, after getting on a tram near tsetsnoy bulvar and going north. it was a great find. i went back a second day.