Friday, November 14, 2008

Update on Papa Joe

Papa Joe had a good night Wednesday night. Of course there were a lot of interruptions throughout the night, but his vitals remained stable.

Shannon and I were able to speak to the cardiologist around 12:30 yesterday. He explained that they would like to do an angiogram to determine what damage there might be to Papa Joe's heart. Depending on the results, there are several options. If they find blockage in only one artery, they will most likely put a stent in at that time. If more than one artery is blocked, then bypss surgery is an option, even at his age (83). He would need to be transferred to a different hospital for bypass surgery. Dr. Ahmed said there was an outside chance that he could do the angiogram late Thursday evening, and if not they would do it at 7:30 Friday morning.

We left the hospital at 2:00pm so Shannon could get back to work and I could get Jack and Chase to basketball practice. About 10 minutes after I got home, Carrie called saying they were going to do the angiogram at 4:30pm. Shannon wasn't able to reschedule his patients with such little notice, so I dropped the boys off in Gladbrook at practice and continued on back to Marshalltown.

They came to take Papa Joe to surgery at about 4:30pm, and we arrived on the surgery floor at 4:45pm. The nurse estimated that they should be done in about an hour. Angie and Tim went to grab something to eat, and Carrie was still in the process of dropping her boys off at our house and returning to the hospital.

At 5:15pm Dr. Ahmed took Barry and I to look at the pictures on the computer that he had taken of Papa Joe's heart. There are three main arteries. One of them was completely blown. Not even visible on the picture. Another was 90% occluded, and the third was 60% blocked. They did not do an angioplasty at that time. Testing needs to be done to determine if the blown artery is viable, or just dead tissue. If it is dead, then it cannot be repaired, even with bypass. Dr. Ahmed is going to consult with the cardiac surgeon today, and let us know what they recommend after that time.

Papa Joe will likely be released from the hospital today. We are scrambling to set up schedules of care for him. He's not one to lie back and take it easy, but he NEEDS to rest. He lives alone. We're also looking into getting him a Life Alert type thing, you know, the "I've fallen and I can't get up!" necklace thing. He'll just LOVE that.

Thank you for your prayers, calls and support. There were several prayer chains going for Papa Joe, and we certainly felt God's hand in the way events played out.

Our older boys have been great caring for the younger ones this week, and we really appreciate their help. The littles are missing their mama and daddy, and are making up for lost time by sleeping with us at night. Oh, joy.

We're attempting to get some good school time in today, and maybe even cook a real meal. It's taken me over six hours just to complete this post, so I'm not holding my breath on anything today.

I've vacuumed the house, folded 4 loads of laundry that has been hanging around in the laundry room since early this week, and I'm steadily attacking the mound of dirty laundry awaiting my attention. All in good time...

We discovered this week that Papa Murphy's 5-meat Stuffed Pizza is really good.

"As in water face reflects face, so a man's heart reveals the man." Proverbs 27:19

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