Me: "Who has the best seat in the house, me or daddy?"

Adam: "Well, Daddy's is nice, but yours is best. Your's is squishier."

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Number Four

Sweet Velma, one of my regular nurses.
Today when I went for my blood draw, Marina, Tom and Virginia were all busy, so a new tech was doing my blood draw.  She was chatting along and at one point said, 
"Well, life is full of surprises."  Yah, yah it is.

I guess I can say that when my leg is doing well, I just don't think much about it.  
Last week I started thinking about it.  A lot.

Now that I have fallen off of the pregnant patient wagon, I am just a regular, run-o-the-mill patient.  That means I fall under the umbrella of Dr. V., who hasn't seen me since I took a small flight and bouncy landing off of my son's bike in '09.  It turns out if you want to teach popping a wheelie, you should know how to land it.  I sent him an email to let him know that I wanted him to read my file, and that I felt like I was having the subtle inklings of a clot.

He sent me a reply, reassuring me that people
 don't grow clots while on blood thinners. 

You've heard of "read it and weep"?  Well, I did.  Cried actually.

Guy comforted me, assuring me that the doctor couldn't possibly have read my file.  We made an appointment, and waited the two days it took to see him.  He read my file, finally, while sitting in front of me.  It took several tries for him to even figure out which blood clot happened in which month.  Now, please understand, I really like Dr. V.  He has always been kind and helpful.  I understood that he must have just looked at my labs, which look like great labs for a regular person.  

Finally, he told it all back to me with the details in the right place, and then asked, 
"Where would you like to go for your scan?"


We drove to South Sac, but got there too late for Jane to scan me.  I got a new tech, and she assured me that though she couldn't officially tell me anything (sigh), she saw flow from my Inferior Vena Cava.

 I was awakened the next morning by a call from Dr. F., who said that the scan looked a little fishy to him, and scheduled me for an angiogram.  Next came an email from Dr. V. "Good News!" he said.
 The report on my scan came back clear of blood clots.

Tuesday we did the regular drill.  Fasting, IV, drugs, vitals, the usual.  Well, all except for when the nurse accidentally doubled my benedryl and I had a freaky reaction, which included watching the floor turn into water, and the chair seat throbbing.  It lasted about half an hour.

An interesting thing happens when I am on the table in the radiology procedure room.  I can't see anything, and once my leg is numb, I don't really know what's going on.  That's always when it comes, the news.

"Well, Laine, the stents are completely blocked."
Sigh.  Blood clot number four.

It was pretty hard to unblock them.  At one point
 he said what he was thinking out loud,
 "I'm pretty discouraged, here."

I became crestfallen. There was nothing I could do from my place there on the table.  He said he might have to go in through my jugular vein because the clot was too hard to get his tools through.  "You'll mess up my cool vampire-bite scar." I joked, trying to cheer him.  "I already have two nicely spaced scars, a third will ruin the effect."  I laid there and prayed for him to be confident, to find a way into my vein so that he wouldn't have to go in through my neck again.  

"I'm through." he said, finally.

He talked me through the procedure, explaining where the clots were, and what he was doing to break them up.  Eventually, he got it cleared and decided to place two more stents.  It was pretty painful, but we've been through worse.  It took about a 1/2 hour to stop the bleeding.

It was about 3 1/2 hours for the procedure, but of course the hours before and after totaled to about 8.  Because of the larger tools that Dr. F. used and how hard the clots were, it's been a lot more sore than previous recoveries,
 but today has been better.  

Dr. F. said he was perplexed; that even with my blood thinners and with the clot dissolving medication he was using, he was watching my blood clot on the tools right before his eyes.  "It shouldn't be able to do that," he said, puzzled.

  Next stop, a hematologist. 

My leg feels kind of weird now.  Not really sure what that means.


Jackie said...

So sorry Laine!!! Prayers for you.. Xoxoxo

Jan and Carol Van de Wetering Family said...

Laine, I am at such a loss for words. Sorrow, compassion, incredulity, concern, hope, faith, prayer, amazement, anger, .... jeepers you could add so many to that list, I'm sure. But know that I am empathizing and always know we care and want to know; the good, bad and the ugly. Your faith and courage strengthens mine. we love you. Carol & Jan

Anonymous said...

Have you seen this story? I don't know if it would be helpful for your medical team (or if they have already seen this and thought about it). But as someone who has had a terrible clot experience too I try to keep up with the science. I hope the hematologist can get to the bottom of your problems so you can go back to concentrating on the fun stuff.