Saturday, September 15, 2012

Day 2 of 29 day Induction Phase - Surgery for Port Placement



BJ is getting an IV port surgically put into his chest today. It will be the site where they access his veins for drawing labs and transfusing the chemo drugs. He is scared. He's never had any kind of surgery before and this port is supposed to stay in his chest for 3 years....as long as it doesn't break, doesn't clot, and doesn't get infected.

Infection is a major concern now. The chemo drugs will wipe out BJ's immune system even more than it already is. I have become a hand sanitizer fanatic, and made sure everyone who comes in contact with BJ got a squirt. 

BJ was really nervous about the port surgery, but as usual, he's being strong as a rock. Surgery and procedures are on the 5th floor, so we travel there and wait until he gets to the recovery room.

Out in recovery, and he wakes up pissed off. He said it hurt like crap, and he was so mad because we were told that it wouldn't hurt as much as the bone marrow aspiration afterward. It hurt much worse. The nurse gave him some morphine and in a little while, he felt some better. When I had the opportunity to talk to the doctor and staff, I told them that BJ was pretty mad about what he was told, and that he needed accurate information and no sugar coating. 

A short while after getting back to his room, BJ received his first IV chemo treatment. It infused through his port, and he had no immediate reactions.

Later that evening, he was nauseated and started chattering teeth, and developed a fever of 103.0. This scared me to death. We were told that we need to watch for fevers, and anything over 100.4 is a cause for concern. They drew blood from this port IV and sent it in for culture. We won't know for 48 hours if he actually has an infection or not. They gave him Tylenol (Motrin/ibuprofen is prohibited for BJ now), some Zofran in his IV line for the nausea, and started an antibiotic in his IV as well.

Around 11pm, his temp was down to 99.4. They hung another bag of platelets to transfuse, because his platelet level had dropped again.


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