Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Replacement Surgery

Dave is in ICU. Early Friday morning, he developed a large blood clot within his LVAD pump. He was admitted and several hours later he went to the Cath lab, in an attempt to break up the clot with TPA, a high powered clot buster. He came through very well. Saturday, he formed yet another clot within the pump. He's very jaundiced from his liver objecting to the number of red blood cells going through it, his urine is black, he is running a temp, and is in pain. He can't return for more TPA, because he's at great risk for a brain bleed. Options right now - remain on Plavix, Heparin, Coumadin, and aspirin and wait it out. If absolutely necessary, the old pump will be removed and a new one will be placed.

On Sunday, the serious discussions about replacing his LVAD began because something has to be done. The pump is no longer working as it should and it is obvious by the readings that it’s working too hard because of the clots and causing Dave pain. He's trying to hold his own, sleeping mostly and is not very aware of people around him. His liver and kidneys are suffering also. He's receiving units of blood as his hemoglobin levels dictate. He can’t keep going on like this.

On Monday the decision was officially made to replace the pump because the pump he has is now officially "making him sick", not helping. The doctors were fantastic about explaining his options and everyone is at peace with Dave’s choice.

During this open heart surgery to replace the pump, if there is too much damage then they will remove the pump and not replace it. This is not what we are hoping for at all but we trust the doctors will make the right decision for Dave. Also, he is at high risk for strokes due to all of the blood thinners he takes, ironically to prevent the blood clots that he ended up having anyway.

Right about now, Dave will be going into surgery to replace his LVAD pump. We are so very worried for him because he’s so weak right now from all his body has been through since Friday.

Despite Dave’s stroke that occurred after his last procedure, Dave has seen MUCH improvement physically with the insertion of the first LVAD. We are hoping that replacing it will work.

Today we ask for prayers and every positive thought you can throw Dave’s way. Specific things to think about are that he makes it through the procedure safely, the pump is able to be replaced AND that he does not suffer another stroke.

Thank you so much. Your support means the world to us.

Jo

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