48 hours and counting

Thanks Victor for updating the blog while I was ill. Victor brought me my iPad this morning so now I can write about the last 48 hours.

I’m in a room with a view of trees and grass. My bed is close to the window.

There are three other patients in the room, all with cancer. The two ladies are terminal and will move to a hospice. One just turned 50 and is quite fit, but the cancer has spread to her brain. The other is a small woman who is very quiet and can’t leave her bed. The gentleman across the way is leaving tomorrow. I’m not sure what he has but he will go to the AVL cancer hospital for radiation.

When I came I was extremely cold, cold shivers. An hour later my temperature was 39.9. I got into bed right away and got warm blankets. A nurse took blood for the tests which they do when you have fever.

The doctor was very kind and explained they would put me on two antibiotics, one for the the throat and one general type. They placed the IV needle and started me right away. Victor left to get me all the things I would need for the night.

The antibiotics are given at 10 and12 pm and the IV pump has an alarm that goes off when it’s done. I slept little that night. Thursday morning I woke with pain in my mouth. At 6 the new antibiotic is given. At 8 they come by with breakfast. Since I can’t swallow, I’m given a nutridrink which has plenty of nutrients and calories. It still is hard to swallow and it takes me all morning to finish one bottle of 200 ml. What helps is ice, a waterbased icecream. I had visitors, my friend G came by at 10.30 but since it was outside of visiting hours her visit was cut short. My mom came in the afternoon and Victor came at 18.30, Ingrid came at 7. I still have trouble talking.

At night again trouble sleeping. I can fall asleep but wake up easily due to the IV alarm, noises around me etc. In the morning I woke up with a swollen mouth.

Today was a trying day. The morning was alright. The nurse helped me and asked the doctor to look at my mouth. I have oral mucositis which is common among chemo patients. It is something that heals on its own but is very painful. I drank two nutridrinks and ate a pudding desert.  I did manage to go outside around noon with Mariette my roommate who wanted a smoke. It was nice to get some fresh air.

The doctor came by with the specialist internal medicine and she prescribed painkillers. Victor was worried about my treatment and came to speak to the doctor. He confirmed what we know which is that it takes time to heal from the condition I have, since my resistance is terribly low.

Unfortunately for me I reacted very badly to the painkiller medicine. I started to vomit uncontrollably, but since there’s no food in my stomach I vomited slime with some mouth lining. It left me pretty shaken. The nurse gave me anti-vomiting medicine through my IV and that helped. I’m now on paracetamol (acetominaphen) which is fine. It doesn’t relieve all the pain but it makes it a bit easier to swallow. I sometimes cough suddenly when there is saliva stuck in my throat. I have a lot of saliva but it hurts to swallow it so I spit it out a lot.

Now I’m feeling a little better. I guess I have to be very patient and resign myself to the fact that I’m stuck on liquid food for the next few days.

10 Replies to “48 hours and counting”

  1. Poor Sheila,

    Bleeping iv pumps, noisy fellow patients, snoring, nurses checking, food service, cleaning staff – a hospital is no place to rest, I’ve been there. Hope you get home soon.
    Retching on an empty stomach, with an inflamed mouth and throat, jeez, I feel for you. But all this will pass.
    Vic, by a large cooler, plenty of ice and fill it up with Italian gelato, put it next to
    Sheila.
    Ask about a fentanyl patch, shouldn’t make you sick, good background pain relief and use paracetamol to top up if needed.

  2. Lieve Sheila, wat een ellende en wat ben je een sterke vrouw zoals je er in zit! Ik heb veel bewondering voor je. Hang in there!
    Liefs Esther

  3. Hallo Sheila en Victor.
    Hoop dat je keel snel beter wordt. Wat een toestanden als je verkeerd op medicijnen reageert. Ik was even een paar dagen uit de lucht en schrok enorm van Victors bericht.
    Wat zijn jullie beide kanjers!!
    Victor, wat zorg je goed voor Sheila.
    Sheila, wat ga jij goed met alles om.
    Veel sterkte de komende tijd en hoop dat je snel naar huis mag.

    groetjes Jolanda

  4. Het is ook vervelend dat er zoveel bij komt kijken, ik dacht chemo heeft alleen bijwerkingen,zoals spugen, maar niet dat dit soort dingen erbij horen.. wat kan ja als buitenstaander dan nog zeggen: behalve respect dat je het allemaal zo opneemt.

  5. lieve Sheila
    sterkte meisje, we denken steeds aan je en hopen dat je snel weer gewoon kan eten en drinken! Tot gauw,
    groetjes van Paul, Isabelle, Catherine en Xavier!

  6. Hallo Sheila,

    had even facebook contact met Victor…….hoop gaat alweer een beetje beter. Leuk dat je een ipad hebt, kan je op ieder geval de zon naar binnen halen….

    Dikke zoen en stuur wel een beetje zon vanuit Bahrain….

    Mark

  7. Hallo Sheila,

    had even met Victor contact via facebook, hoop dat het al weer een stuk beter gaat. Leuk dat je een ipad hebt, kan je de zon in je kamer halen……stuur je wel wat zon uit Bahrain.

    Het ga je goed !

    Mark

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