Saturday, October 25, 2008

10/25 - Heart Attack Log

Early this morning Sara and her boys, Stephanie and Dan arrived from Florida and North Carolina. They had driven straight through and were very tired, but anxious to see Dad. Therefore, after about two hours sleep, Jayna and all the kids went up to the hospital to see Steve this morning. While the Dr. was in the room checking on Steve and discussing the upcoming move to Methodist Hospital with the family, Sara, who was standing next to Dan, asked him "What are you doing?" Suddenly, Dan was falling to the floor, pulling Sara by the shoulders as he went down. The Dr. asked Dan if he was alright and if was experiencing any chest pain. Dan was embarrassed that he had just fainted in Steve's hospital room in front of the Dr. because of exhaustion and needing to eat. The Dr. went out and brought back a big glass of orange juice for Dan to drink, but the entire family was laughing at Dan's expense.

Later in the afternoon, Steve was moved down to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis. The family is very pleased with the facilities there and very happy with the decision they made to move Steve to Indy. However, the transfer did take it's tole on Steve today, causing him to have difficulty with nausea. The nursing staff is administering medication to assist in getting that under control so he can get some food into his stomach and continue to gain strength for his upcoming surgery.

Tomorrow will be a big day for Steve, the surgical team has scheduled many tests for him to have done as preparation for his upcoming surgery. We hope these don't tire him out too much. Also, the surgical staff is wanting Steve's heart to continue to strenthen prior to his surgery. They mentioned not to be surprised if they decide to postpone his surgery for Monday to allow him more time. A final decision should be made on Sunday.

Jayna is experiencing difficulty being able to rest at night. Please pray that she is able to get her necessary sleep so she can be at her best while with Steve and the surgical team in the morning.

Please continue to feel free to call the following phone number for updates about Steve's condition: 248-686-1190

Friday, October 24, 2008

10/24 - Heart Attack Log
Steve will be transferred from the hospital in Kokomo to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis on Saturday, October 25th. He will have surgery on Monday, October 27th. The exact time has yet to be determined, but it should be sometime in the morning.

Also, please feel free to call the following phone number for recorded updates on Steve as the family receives them - 248-686-1190.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

10/23 - Heart Attack Log

Thursday morning, we still don't know how much damage is done to Dad's heart. What we know at this time is that the front portion of the heart is operating at 60%, another portion is operating at 20% and the final portion was at around 25%. Dad had many places were the arteries were blocked 100%. The front portion of the heart is the part that needs the surgery to by-pass the 75-80% blocked artery where they could not put a stint. The doctors seem concerned at this point.
  • 6:00am - Dad is still flat on his back and rather miserable. BUT he is starting to feel better and is not as nauseous as he has been.
  • Kendra, Jason and Mom get to the hospital around 6:45am in order to make sure to catch Dr. Ritchie (the cardiologist) and get an update on what he knows. Dr. reports that Dad appears to be healing a tad better than expected and that the balloon pump can come out around 3:00pm.
  • Kendra, Jason and Mom have to make a decision about open heart surgery and where to have it performed. After a couple hours of fact-finding, we decide to move Dad to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis to perform the surgery.
  • At around 3pm, Dad is given a bunch of drugs to knock him out and the nurses remove the balloon pump. This process took about an hour and was pretty painful. After the pump was removed, a clamp-like device was put on the entry point to apply pressure on the artery and stop the bleeding. This just looked painful. Dad couldn't remember his name at this point and didn't seem to notice the pain.
  • Dad stayed a little loopy for about 2 1/2 hours. This was BY FAR the most fun Mom and I had in the past 24 hours. Kendra unfortunately missed out on this because she left to go teach a college course.
  • Dr. Ritchie visited and told us that all signs were pointing up. The blood work showed that Dad's heart is repairing itself and at this point, he didn't foresee any significant long-term damage to the heart.
  • Dad was taken off his IV and other tubes and allowed to walk to the bathroom.
  • Had Dad not had a vital artery still blocked 75-80%, Dad would have been sent home at this time. Instead, the Dr's want to watch his heart as they prepare to send him down for major surgery.
  • Dad feels better than he has in months. His coloring is significantly better and his nausea is gone for the first time in 5 weeks. (Yeah - we know Dad should have read this sign better - or listened to his family and actually gone to the Doctor weeks ago)
  • 10:00pm Dad fell asleep on his side with things at this point signaling a good recovery. We're not out of the woods yet, we still have a surgery to get through, but the urgent issues are under control.

10/22 - Heart Attack Log...

We have decided to use the blog to keep as many people as possible informed about Dad's condition. So many people have expressed their love and concern for Dad, that we felt it best to put all the information we have in one place for people to access. In the whirl of the events there are a lot of facts and information that has gotten confused. Here is a recap with what we know to be true:
  • Heart Attack started @ 8:00p on Tuesday night (10/21)
  • Dad couldn't sleep all night, kept pacing the floor and complaining of "heart-burn"
  • Wednesday morning, Dad was too sick to go to work and decided to stay home from the office.
  • Mom went to a meeting around 1:00pm on Wednesday and while she was at the meeting, Dad decided to drive himself to the hospital (it's only about 2 miles from their home.)
  • Hospital immediately recognized the signs and prepared Dad for surgery.
  • 2 arteries were 95-100% blocked and another artery was 75-80% blocked.
  • 4 stents were put in place to clear the pathway on the two 100% blocked arteries. (this had previously been reported as 6, but the doctor pulled that from memory and combined the count with another procedure done around the same time - so we got the final tally from his records today)
  • The 75-80% blockage is in a location that prohibits stents from being used. As a result, additional open heart surgery is required.
  • Over 2/3rds of the heart was under attack and it appeared as though extensive damage was done to the heart.
  • After the stents were put in place, a "balloon pump" was inserted to help the heart rest for the next 24 hours. The downside to this (at least from Dad's perspective) is that he had to lay flat on his back and could not move his right leg or head for the entire time.
  • Attempted to sleep. Didn't work out so well.