Monday, October 18, 2010

Today was the big day!

Leslie has been on heparin for the blood clots in her lungs and legs for a good 2 weeks. They just turned it off last Saturday and she has been on Coumadin. Because of all the blood thinners, though, her INR (lab that measures how quickly your blood clots) was high. They knew this on Sunday and because she was scheduled to go to the operating room, they were trying to thicken up her blood. Rather than giving her a shot or IV of Vitamin K (the antidote to Coumadin), they were encouraging her to eat green vegetables (high in Vitamin K). For one, she has never been a big salad eater. And two, she hasn't had much of an appetite PERIOD since this whole ordeal started. So naturally, this morning, they got her down to the cath lab, and decided her blood was just too thin to safely put the defibrillator in, and sent her back to her room.

This was majorly disappointing for my family. Of course, we understood, and would never encourage a surgery if it wasn't safe, but gosh, we just want to get MOVING and get her on to rehab. They decided they would recheck her blood levels in the afternoon. Thankfully, everything was a go, and she safely came out of surgery around 7:30 PM this evening.

Now I have always thought of Leslie as just your average girl. She was quiet, and liked to blend in to the crowd. Since this incident, though, I have learned that my sister clearly craves a challenge, and has thrown these doctors for a dozen or so loops, and today was no exception! They got the defibrillator in, and when they gave it a test run, they learned it doesn't shock strong enough to shock her heart out of an arrhythmia. Say what? Yes, her heart needs an extra oomph. There are a few options for this to make it work. One involved implanting a wire deep into her. Due to her blood being so thin, this would be quite risky. The other involves putting her on a beta blocker (which she is already on one, so I'm not sure what the other one would be) and it would lessen the shock threshold. I don't really understand all of this, but it sounds scary to me. Leslie has to go all out on this one and have a super mega "can't touch me!" kind of heart, apparently. The doctors are going to go back in tomorrow and fiddle around with it some more. Can you fiddle around with a heart? I suppose so.

We also leaned a unique fact about her arrhythmia. Normally ventricular tachycardia has big pointy waves. Leslie's waves are short and stout. Kind of like a tea pot. We ask the doctors why, and they don't really know.

No one knows. My sweet sister, she's a lesson for the books! I love her and I know she can do this. We just have to figure out how to get her heart to cooperate.

So that's where we are now. I miss her terribly right now so I will be seeing her tomorrow.

Good night, y'all!


Anonymous said...

she is turning into a great candidate for mystery diagnosis.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like we need to call Dr. House!