So much has happened

28 Dec

Wow! Where should I even start with this … Especially since I haven’t had coffee yet …

Okay, here goes:
Most of my friends have probably heard me talk about the condition my dad was diagnosed with a few years ago: NPH. Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus (I think thats right). In layman’s terms, he has too much spinal fluid in his brain cavity. It causes Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s type symptoms. Four years ago a neurosurgeon put a shunt in his skull that drains excess fluid into his stomach. Things have gone pretty well with that procedure. Until Christmas Day, 2009.
Dad fell on Christmas morning getting out of the shower. He doesn’t normally fall. There was no visual trauma to his body, and he said he went down “soft.” Mom, Drew, and I got him back up and into the den. All seemed okay. Throughout the day he didn’t say much and seemed to be getting worse. I wondered if this was a result of the fall, or the fact that he was tired (he’d been up to 11pm, something he NEVER does, for the past two nights). Diana, Krissy, Drew, and I had to go to Diana’s family Christmas, but we didn’t hesitate to leave because Dad seemed fine.
About 5:30pm I got the word that they were taking him to the ER at Greenville Memorial. That was the first big hill on this rollercoaster. They found him to have a subdural hematoma (yeah, I have no idea if I spelled that right, and right now that is fine with me) on BOTH SIDES on top of his brain. Pools of blood had collected. The ER doc seemed insistent this was due to a trauma to the front of this head within the last two weeks. Problem was, he hasn’t fallen in MONTHS before the morning fall.
His neurosurgeon looked at the cat scan and other tests and determined the bleed was due to small blood vessels in the top of his head tearing as his brain floated down (as spinal fluid was removed). Dad has had NO PROBLEMS with this shunt for four years, but two months ago they adjusted the flow. (No one will address if that was the cause of this).
On Saturday afternoon the neurosurgeon decided he needed to go on in and relieve the pressure by drilling in. He did that and we saw immediate good results. Saturday night / Sunday morning was not a good time … He was very nauseated and became less alert, and could not move his right arm as much. The morning CAT Scan showed the surgery to be a success, but Dad could keep nothing on his stomach and was losing movement in his right arm. Some of the problems with this are attributed to the fact that fluid was drained and now there is air until the brain pressure is restored. He had a rough day, and as the day went on, eventually lost movement in his right arm.
His nurse was increasingly alarmed. She finally got the word to take him RIGHT THEN for another CAT Scan. This was sometime Sunday afternoon. When we heard from the doc, he said the afternoon scan looked even better than the morning scan. And here we sit: He can’t move his right arm, he can’t squeeze his right hand, he DOES feel things on his hand. And that is where we are. Few answers and told that time will help.
I spent the night up here last night and he had a good night. Slept steady. Still is alert enough to talk to the nurses and he says he remembers watching Clemson win last night. Has he turned the corner?? I am not sure yet, but he is a whole lot closer this morning than yesterday …
And I am so fortunate to have good friends that pray. And on behalf of my family, THANK YOU SO MUCH!! You will never know what it has meant to us!! KEEP PRAYIN!

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