Sunday, June 17, 2012

Update after hospital visit

I am pleased to report that my dad seemed to be doing okay, and actually looked a little better than the last time I saw him at the assisted living home. The color had returned to his skin a little, his eyes were a little bit clearer, and his voice sounded better. He seemed more responsive, too, and seemed to recognize me and gave me a big hug, which he actually initiated this time (something that hasn't happened in a very long time).

I found out that he had not fallen yesterday morning like I had thought, but the night before, right after they had put him to bed. And he did get back out of bed himself without any help before falling, according to the report from the workers at the assisted living home.

They're treating him for the UTI and sinusitis with antibiotics, and will also be testing his swallowing capability, as he has been having a bit of trouble swallowing for awhile now. He hasn't been eating as much over the past couple of months and has lost 35 pounds (and he wasn't overweight to begin with, or maybe by only about five pounds). They aren't sure if it's because his appetite is down or because he can't swallow well, or both.

The doctor that is seeing him while he's in the hospital also discontinued all his medications (apparently he has to use a different doctor while in the assisted living home, one that oversees the residents there), except for the antibiotics, and will be reintroducing them one at a time to try and get a better dosage, hoping it will help my dad be able to function better.

I do find it very interesting that after discontinuing his medications, he was more responsive and more "himself," and able to communicate better ("better" being a relative term, of course). It's hard to describe the difference I could see in his face and in his eyes, though. He was more "there," if that makes sense. The last time I saw him at the assisted living home, I looked into his eyes once and it was like he wasn't even there. It was his body, but the man, my dad, didn't seem to be there. It gave new meaning to the term, "blank stare." It was a chilling moment. But today, he was very much there. There were brief moments when his eyes were glazed over a bit, but the majority of the time, he was really there, and I can't tell you how relieved I was to see "him" again.

For those who might be reading this, I beg of you (and I'm not usually the begging type, mind you), if you are the praying type, please pray that the doctor who is currently under my dad's care will be able to figure out the best dosage for my dad's medications, so that the time he has left on this earth will be of the best quality possible. Thank you.

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