It took a while but by 5pm we were assigned to a beautiful private suite in the new Mugar building of the hospital. Seems that our IV nurse, Lou (short for Lucine Kovacs) put a call in to the room booker and told her that Debbi was a friend from New Jersey. Lou had lived in New Jersey but moved to Cape Cod many years ago. The room is the best. A sofa turns into a full size bed and the room is fitted with comfortable furniture as well as all the requirements for excellent patient care.
As you recall, Debbi has a “port” sitting just beneath the skin a few inches down from her right shoulder. The chemo nurses at Sloan would plunge a needle through the skin into the port and it would bottom out against a small metal safety plate. Once accessed, blood could be drawn or IVs / chemo could be administered. Accessing the port turned out to be an art because the entry site of the port settled exactly below the scar tissue formed when the port was surgically inserted. Trying to access the port by piercing the scar tissue directly above it turned out to be very very painful. The best “accesser” at Sloan used to slide the skin down and plunge the needle into the port just above the scar line. During all the chemo sticks, we always requested that Ann Marie would do the stick as most other nurses, even when told about Ann Marie’s procedure, caused Debbi some pain.
Here at Hyannis Hospital, Lou came by to access the port. We told her of Ann Marie’s procedure. After carefully examining the site and preparing her clean kit, 1, 2, 3, the port was accessed and Debbi felt absolutely nothing. Also, Lou was very personable and kind and just a beautiful person.
Anyway, after sticking Debbi, Lou calls up and greases the way and here we are in this wonderful suite.
Medically, Debbi is on Heparin to make sure that any possible clot does not increase. With an increase in fluids we are hoping that her Creatine component will drop a bit (it was 1.47 and normal is 1.2) so that she can be administered the dye that is used for a CT scan. The CT scan with the dye will be able to pick up any possible blood clot and unless we have the all clear it will not be possible to drive Debbi back to NYC.
On Tuesday she is scheduled for a PET scan so going home is important. The PET scan has been ordered to determine the nature of the spiculated cells found on her lung and also will hopefully provide us some clues as to the nature of the pain in Debbi’s upper arm.
Rea, Josh, and Katherine came to visit and that is really helping Debbi get through her withching hours which are from 7pm till bedtime. After making it through the day, somehow her pain doubles in the witching hours so her visitors are really providing comfort.