Sunday, June 6, 2010

The EVD is out

Kirk already posted that the EVD has been removed. While Kirk and the girls were at church, I stayed at the hospital, waiting most of the morning for the neuro surg. resident to remove Kol's drain. She came around 9:30, saw Kol eating, and had the nurse put lidocaine (freezing) around the site of the drain while she ran upstairs for something, and she said she'd be back shortly. The lidocaine cream takes effect in about 20 minutes, and is effective for about 1 hour. 1.5 hours later, the nurse paged her, and she was in ER. They put more lidocaine cream on, she came back, did an assessment of Kol, and left again.

During the assessment, Kol was able to sit up for about 2 minutes, and, although he is still quite weak, his balance was good. Neurologically, there seemed to be no issues. He is very aware of his surroundings, he hadn't vomited within the last 24 hours, his eyes respond appropriately, his muscle strength is improving, and although he still has some right side weakness, it has been lessening. He still has a constant headache - I think because the pressure in his head has been constantly changing. I hope that it will go away now that the drain is gone and the pressure will be more constant.

The lidocaine had almost worn off a second time by the time she got there at about 12:30. Kol was sleeping, and I crawled up on the bed with him while the resident and nurse pulled the tube out. After all of the waiting, the actual removal was quite anti-climactic. The stitches that held it in place were cut, the valves on the drain were opened, (so it wouldn't create a vacuum and suck out CSF) and the tube was just pulled. He whimpered and squeezed my hands while it was being stitched, but he was so tough. He was more upset at having tape removed than he was at getting stitches in his head.

I'm probably being a worry wart, but I find that I've been worrying more about the drain having been removed than I did about the surgery itself. Maybe it's because I knew the surgery was absolutely necessary. I also felt completely comforted during Kol's surgery. I know the drain had to be removed, too. The risk of infection is greater the longer it stays in, and apparently, if it is left in too long, the normal drain passage way - whatever that is, could get sealed, or plugged up permanently. There were just a few little things that concerned me about Kol's behavior before the drain got removed. He has a tremor in his hands and arms. It was really noticeable when he and Kirk were working together building a LEGO model last night. He was complaining of pressure under where the sutures were - where the bone was removed. It looked a bit swollen there, too. It's probably nothing, but I would appreciate prayers that his body reabsorbs/drains all of the CSF properly.

Even if the CSF doesn't drain properly, we still have options. Kol would need another operation to install a shunt - a tube that will drain the fluid from his head into his leg. It's not a terrible thing.

1 comment:

  1. praying praying praying sweet family. m and d and girls