Friday, August 16, 2013

On Counting One's Chickens

Lest you think I'm not posting because I'm a week out of treatment and sipping Mai Tai's (through my feeding tube) on a beach somewhere to celebrate. Let me disabuse you.

In fact we are in round two of the intestinal full stop. As we've found through this journey, I seem to be exquisitely sensitive to many drugs. We each have a different genetic profile of components of our metabolism that govern how we process drugs: development of a new drug has to understand the average case in the target population as well as the outliers (patients who will not respond at all, and patients who will get an overdose because they process too efficiently.

Anyway, I'd say that I process opoids too efficiently. A very low dose is controlling my pain, but that same very low dose is giving me the full bore constipation side effect. Ugh.

So once again, even in the midst of stronger and more frequent laxatives I find myself so backed up that I can no longer put anything in my stomach.

At 3:00 AM this morning, in desperation to get some kind of liquids in, I set up a slow drip of plain water at about one drip per second. I had 500 ml in the bag but stopped after 300ml because I was already feeling funky. I don't feel nauseous, just funky. It's like there a switch at the bottom of my esophagus and if my stomach enlarges enough to comtact that switch, Blammo!

A few minutes after I stopped the water intake, the switch was triggered.

I had thought the experiment had low cost since I'd just be vomiting water. Not true. I vomited water plus mixed stomach contents from earlier in the day as well as recently taken medicines, and stomach acid. Vomiting burned my already painful throat and set it on fire. It still hasn't recovered.

I shan't repeat that experiment.

Today I want back on IV fluids. Nurse Stephanie somehow magically found a vein with an IV we can leave in for four days (less poking). I slept through most of the infusion of 2 liters of saline today, and I slept another hour or two when we got home. The fluids are giving the laxatives I'm loaded up with something to work with and I've had some minor successes there.

Lets hope continued laxatives and fluids over the next couple of days get me cleared out.

And lets keep our fingers crossed that the mucous production really does start to diminish significantly in the next week. That's the key.

1 comment:

  1. Too late for you, but as a suggestion for anyone else reading this: get a VAP (Veinous Access Port) installed during day-surgery. No more poking to find veins