UPDATE: March 30
As I write this evening, Ivy is resting and appears to be comfortable. Her sats are 99 – 100 % on 55% oxygen, which I’m pretty sure, is the lowest she has been on since the ARDS set in. The bi-level setting is still being used on the ventilator and the high peeps have been reduced from 40 to 36. While this is not much of a change numerically, it is a big step towards the conditions we need for Ivy’s lungs to really heal. The surgeon who has put in most of Ivy’s chest tubes feels that lowering the pressure on her lungs is the key to getting Ivy’s lungs to heal without having to perform surgery.
Since the emergency procedure, Ivy’s pulmonary doctors are performing bronchoscopies every other day to ensure her lungs stay clear and we do not have another mucous plug that would interfere with her breathing. Each time it has been performed, the procedure shows the lungs to be a little “cleaner” than the time before. It has also taken a little less time to perform the “bronch”, which, of course, is much easier on Ivy and our nerves.
Kathie and I both feel Ivy has made progress towards healing. Ivy’s doctors seem to be more positive as well. The surgeon who refused to perform the surgery on Ivy’s lung has told us that he feels if the pressures (peeps) can be reduced enough, that her lungs will heal without surgery. The lead pulmonary doctor, who felt Ivy needed surgery has also been more positive. When he returned to the hospital this time, he was pleased with Ivy’s progress and he has even gone so far as to agree that Ivy may be able to heal without surgery.
Ivy is more alert than she has ever been before, but she does have periods of time when she hallucinates and becomes very agitated. She tries very hard to get out of bed and to pull off the respirator and her pic (I.V.) lines. I find this very frightening, but Ivy’s nurses all tell me that it is good to see her trying to get up, that it shows how strong she is to be able to move herself as much as she does. When she stays calm, she “talks” (she can move her mouth and “mouth out” words, but she cannot speak). If you can read lips, Ivy can be understood. One thing she tells us all the time is that she wants to go home. I can’t wait until the day we can do just that.
And a special note to Sam…tonight, on our way to the hospital, we saw a motorcyclist put his bike down in the middle of the road to avoid hitting a dog. As I watched other people drive around him, I pulled to the side of the road and was the first person at his side, helping him up, pushing his bike off to the shoulder and making sure he was okay…my thanks to you sir, for a lesson well taught…I am forever in your debt.
Once again, I want to thank you all so very much for your continued support of Ivy during all of this. I cannot even begin to tell you all how much it means to Kathie, Chris and I to know you all care enough for Ivy to send your prayers, well-wishes, kind thoughts, cards and letters. I am humbled by the support we have received from you…may God Bless you all.
With Our Best Wishes Always
Michael, Kathie, Chris and most especially, Ivy