Sunday, April 22, 2012

Return to the Hospital

To catch some of my blog friends up on to what's been happening with me...

I got really low on blood before my scheduled surgery and could not wait, I had to go back to the home of the horrible coffee. A day in and still they could find no blood for me. My bloodtype is common, however I've had so many transfusions that the anitbodies/antigens no longer match any other blood.

Second day in- blood drops from a hemoglobin of 5.9 to 3.6. Nurses, doctors all seem worried. They keep asking for names of relatives and telling me to stay awake. That's all I remember. They move me into ICU. I remember seeing my doctor at some point in time, but don't really remember what was said.

"Am I dying?" I ask.

"You're bleeding out," says a nurse. "We have no blood for you. Do you have any relatives other than your daughter?"

"I'm sure I do," I say and I'm out again.

I wake up in the surgery prep room. I know this room well. People stop and ask what I'm doing back there again. Only one month since I had been in here. I'm afraid. I'm thinking that surgery is a bloody affair and I have no blood to spare. What if I bleed out on the operating table and die. Am assured however that I'm bleeding out more by the minute than I'll ever bleed in surgery. It's emergency surgery or death. Anesthesia guy is nice, they are all nice. He goes through an artery in my wrist to try and find some blood to do a blood count. A blood arc he calls it. It's painful even with the deadening. Someone says that I'm holding at three for now. I'm wheeled into surgery.

I wake up mad...fighting...don't know why, don't know where I am. Trying to get some kind of mask off my face, but hands grab mine and hold them down. I go under again.

Next time I awake, I'm in ICU. Blood techs are working day and night trying to match my blood. They've contacted Dallas and Houston blood banks. Called in extra people to help search. The following day the nurses are more relaxed around me. Two units, possibly three, of blood have been found. They start the transfusion. After my body excepts one of the units I am taken out of ICU and returned to my room on the third floor. Where eventually three more units of blood are found due to the diligence and hard work of the blood technicians.

I tell my doctor..."you people sure do panic easily."

He says, "Yeah, I tend to do that when my patient has no blood and is dying."

"Pfft," I said. "I still had at least 3 in me."

"I've seen people die with more than that in them."

"Ha. I'm not 'people' I've been down to 1.5 before and I walked into the hospital to tell them about it. My body is used to having no blood, it wasn't in shock about it."

Anyway to summon up a long post--after more days and nights of severe nausea, a chest infection, respiratory therapy, much soreness, headaches, IV bloating, blown veins, tapped arteries, bad food, good desserts, watered down sodas, nurses' hugs, and a farewell/get well card from the blood technicians I was released yesterday.

And even though I'll always hate the hospital, I owe my life to the dedication of the blood techs, nurses, surgery and ICU staff, anesthesia guy, blood banks, and to my doctor. And yes, even to the cafeteria crew who kept me alive with their desserts. And a special note of thanks for all of you that donate blood out there, without it many lives would be lost each year including mine. <3

And thanks to my kids for being there for me and for taking care of my kitty cats. My son-in-law even mowed my yard while I was in there. He gets special M-I-L points for that. :D And want to thank all my friends at AW, twitter tweeps, and fb pals for all the hugs, get well wishes, and prayers sent up. <3


  1. What a terrifying ordeal, but I'm so glad you found such a wonderful doctor and things are coming together for the better.
    Sending good vibes, hugs, and prayers your way!

  2. *Hugs* Thank you Fel! I received so many hugs, good vibes, and prayers that I had no choice but to come through it and to get better. :) Many thanks and glad you visited my blog! <3

  3. Glad you're doing better! I haven't donated blood in ever so long. Will do something about that after reading about how hard it was for the hospital to find matching blood. Take care!

  4. *Hugs* Thank you Diane. I have never personally been able to give blood due to my disorder, but if you can then please do. It saves lives around the world. :) And has saved mine many times. And thank you, I'm on the mend. <3

  5. Honestly, I've never donated blood and this makes it so clear why I should! I'm really glad you're ok now, nf.

    1. Aw, thanks Rob. *Hugs* A lot of people don't realize how important giving blood is- it's not really something you think about. But everytime you give blood you save a life. Someone's mother, daughter, son, or wife etc.- or even a friend. ;) Thanks for visiting my blog. <3

  6. You have given us a whole new perspective on donating blood! What a harrowing experience you had. So glad it's behind you and you are now out of the hospital!

    1. Aw, thank you! So glad you visited my blog. Hopefully I'm out of the woods now and will be able to put years of hospital stays and tranfusions behind me, but there are still people out there that need blood or will, so yes, please think about donating. Thank you for taking the time to read my posts!!! :)