You need to adjust the flux capacitor…

My visits with David on Saturday were fairly short. I arrived in the morning when he was getting physical therapy. I helped the therapists sit him up and move him to the side of the bed. He’s getting much stronger moving himself up with the trapeze bar. He sat up for about 15 minutes while enjoying the view. It was a crystal-clear day outside, sunny and bright…so he loved the view. But then he started talking nonsense about what he saw out the window….and the patient monitor started beeping. He kept telling the nurse, “You need to adjust the flux capacitor.” He had coughed up part of his feeding tube, and he went in to have a procedure to fix the tube and have another swallow test.

Unfortunately, he aspirated on the swallow test, so he has to keep waiting to drink his root beer. When I came in the evening around 7:00, he was peacefully sleeping. I didn’t want to disturb him, so I left about 5 minutes later. He had a few visitors from the ward in the evening, but after about 10 minutes, he was lecturing my mom on visiting time limits. He said he likes visitors, but not for longer than a few minutes. From what I’ve noticed, he’s a bit more lucid in the mornings, and less agitated. I think as the week progresses, he’ll be requesting more visitors. He realized that there’s a phone book by his room phone, and he keeps threatening to call people. So if you get a random, raspy-voiced call from David…be prepared for some silly talk.

Outta the ICU!

Today David’s main issue has been his ICU psychosis/hallucinations. He has complained of ants crawling on his face and on the ceiling, sea creatures on the window, water dripping from the wall and tv, a cat in the corner of the room, and a baby’s head suspended out the window. He has upgraded to sucking on ice chips, which taste “more decadent than fine wine.” He explained to his sister that this was his third rollover car accident, even though it wasn’t. It’s a bit worrisome to see him only partially coherent. When Jim, his friend and home teacher came over, he said “There’s my neighbor that works at the U,” but then started off on talking nonsense again. His body is working through the remains of all the sedation he’s been on for the last two weeks.

Tomorrow morning the vascular surgeons will complete the “full amputation,” which will assess the damaged tissue still there, adjust the length of the bone, and close up the wound. Dr. Goodman was optimistic that the surgery would go well, and only minimal tissue would have to be taken out. But we had to listen to the list of risks, benefits, and alternatives before signing the consent. He had an evaluation with a psychiatrist, had his wounds redressed, reinstalled the feeding tube, and then was transferred up to the 11th floor. He’s in room 1116, and is able to have non-family visitors. He will be in surgery for most of the morning, and will probably be out of it for most of the day from the anesthesia. I would venture to guess that he can handle visitors by Sunday, but be prepared for a little psychosis.