Saturday, July 24, 2010

5 days since surgery

I'm on the path of recovering!

All of the normal indicators are pointing in the right direction right this time! My temperature has been normal. If it were higher than normal that would indicate an infection. My pain is minimal while nothing is touching my head. As of today, I'm taking Tylenol instead of the narcotics already and only to get to sleep. My blood pressure is normal which if too high or too low would indicate problems. There is no fluid coming from my incision.

All of these things are such good indicators that this surgery is much better than last time. The only set back has been nausea after anytime I eat. It's starting to get better today but I hadn't eaten real food for about 3 days, since I left the hospital. Today, however, I had brunch and a grandma cooked dinner and I didn't feel too bad afterward either meal.

All in all I can deal with the nausea for a little while if it means my head is healing up nicely. I'll let you know if anything crazy happens! Thanks you all again for the thoughts and prayers and whatnot! It really means a lot to me!

Much Love,

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Tuesday Update

Today is Tuesday and I feel much better today than I did yesterday. Erin keeps saying that I'm a totally different person today (in a good way). I'm not so crabby or out of it today. I can tell I'm still a little out of it but I feel way better than yesterday. Still feeling very tired throughout the day and when I do get tired I get irritated quickly. Also my hearing is a little bit off probably to do with the swelling around my right ear, which can be extremely frustrating when I have to ask people to repeat themselves multiple times.

I do have some drainage from my incision site on my head but they have my head wrapped up pretty good so it's not dripping too bad. The docs did a CT scan to make sure there was not anything funky going on under my skin. They said the scan looked great and not to worry about the drainage.

I have been eating lots of solid foods today. I had eggs, bacon, and a slice of french toast for breakfast. I had cottage cheese and assorted fruits for a snack. Also drinking LOTS of water! Joey and Erin are going to sneak me in some Quiznos for lunch! YAY! And we might order pizza for dinner too. Boy, oh, boy, am I getting spoiled or what. And Grandma isn't even here to cook for us yet!

Thanks for all your love, support, prayers, juju, and whatever other good thoughts are coming my way.

I love you all!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Surgery #4

Amy's surgery went "well" according to the neurosurgeon. All he really said was that it went well, that they removed some of the scar tissue from when she had the infection, and were able to mold the material to her head. We had a very brief interaction with him...I'm sure we'll know more tomorrow. We can't tell much what it looks like because there's a little bit of swelling. She has stitches this time instead of staples, which was one of her big concerns (outside of getting another infection), so that's somewhat a relief.

They didn't tell us she was done until she was about to be moved to the floor from the recovery room. We were all getting really nervous because it seemed like it was taking a long time!

Amy's resting in her private hospital room with a pretty good view of the city right now (although she can't really see it). She is already eating a little bit of solid foods and her vital signs are all good. She's in quite a bit of pain, but they're managing it well.

That's all for now. We'll keep you posted!


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Another surgery approaches...

So, I haven't updated in awhile but I have my pre-op appointment this Friday and surgery this coming Monday.

I need to get the whole in my skull covered so that my brain is not so vulnerable.

Short post call or e-mail if you have questions.

Friday, January 8, 2010

No more doctors for awhile!

I got cleared from both the ID clinic and the Neuro surg clinic this week! I got a clean bill of health from both clinics. I don't have to go back to either clinic unless something crazy happens to my head.

In May I will have to go back to the Neuro surg clinic for a pre-op appointment to start the process of getting the plate put back in. We are waiting for quite awhile to make sure that everything in my head is 100% healed before they go back in and put more foreign material in my head again. That's why it won't be until May or later.

I'm just glad to be done going to the doctor twice a week!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


So since my third surgery I have just been resting, healing, and eating. I did get to go home for Thanksgiving. It was an amazing trip. I got to see both sides of my family and my best friends from high school. Nothing crazy happened in STL. Thank goodness.

I went to the doctor today and it seems like I'm still on the path to recovery. They took all my stitches out and picked all my scabs off. They didn't find anything that wasn't supposed to be there and they said that all the skin looked healthy and it seemed to be healing.

So, as of now no more surgeries until I decide whether or not I want to put the metal plate back in. Still on antibiotics for at least two more weeks or until my head heals up all the way. Better safe than sorry!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

#3 went well.

Procedure #3 went well. It really only lasted about an hour from the time they took her back to the OR till the time she was back in pre-op (It was really late so they just used that instead of the PACU). I panicked at first when I got a call. They just debrieded her wound and left it open to heal from the inside out. It's packed with a wick like material and the wick is hanging out a little bit.

Amy's in good spirits, all things considered. She's getting really sick of the hospital and having to keep going back to the hospital. I'm getting sick of the hospital as well. Good thing we have a week vacation coming up...

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Surgery again. Third time's a charm?

Today (Monday), when Amy woke up, I looked at her incision and noticed a hole about 1 cm X .5 cm and about .5 cm deep (that was the PA's measurement). She called the surgery clinic, they told her to go to the ER, they triaged her to Urgent Care, and she saw her neuro team (the chief resident who did her initial procedure and the PA who's been a part of the team throughout the whole process as well).

They admitted her and are going to have to do a minor surgery tomorrow (Tuesday) to open her back up and try a new way to close her wound/incision. Long story short, between the ridge of her skull (which is there cuz they removed the plate) that is putting extra tension on her skin and her skin being weakened by infection, the sutures weren't holding. The surgery's scheduled for 4 PM tomorrow, since she was a late add-on. There is a chance it could be moved up sooner, which would be nice since she can't eat after midnight. We shall see.

We shall see...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Update: The Good, The Bad, and The Weird

It's been awhile since I've updated. So here you go!

The Good:
The antibiotics are working wonders on my head and my infection.

When I am awake I'm feeling pretty darn good. My pain is quite a bit less than the original surgery (probably because I don't have much of an infection anymore).

Plus, my Grandma Harfst is here to take good care of me (some would say spoil) and drive me to my appointments when Erin is a work, school, or whatever.

The Bad:
The antibiotics make me tired and nauseous, it tastes SO bad and I've been sleeping for about 12 hours a day on average.

I got some of my stitches taken out today but somehow the scabs from my incision had grown over some of them. Getting those stitches taken out was quite painful.

The Weird:
I'm actually taking two antibiotics, one through a "hone catheter" or a central line through my neck, and the other is just a pill I take by mouth three times a day.

Right before I was going to get my stitches out I asked my doctor if I should be worried about a squishing noise that I heard when I would dry off my incision after a shower. He said not to be worried because it was probably just my brain squishing around behind my skin where the skull is missing (I guess that was supposed to make me feel better). However when the nurse began to take the stitches out he got to a certain point my head began leaking fluid like a dripping faucet. Erin ran and grabbed gauze for my head, Grandma ran and grabbed paper towels for my neck and hands that were getting leaked on. Ends up that I had two major sections of my head that were not healing but rather just holding fluid (so much for not worrying). They removed the stitches that they could and re-stitched the sections that were not healing pulling them even tighter (OUCH). And I also learned I'm going to have to keep taking the antibiotics for and extra week since my head hasn't been healing correctly.

If you have any questions comment, email, text, call!

Much Love!

Monday, November 9, 2009 least it's not MRSA

Hey Everyone,

Amy came home on Friday and is taking it much easier this time around. She's on IV antibiotics that are dispensed through a baby bottle-like thing that she changes out every 24 hours. It's pretty easy.

Her official diagnosis was MSSA (Methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus), which isn't as bad as MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). Basically, they grew cultures and tested them to see what type of antibiotics would work best on them, and came up with a combo of 2 - one oral and one in IV form. She has a central line and had her drain taken out of her head on Thursday.

She's a lot more tired this time around, most likely because of the infection and the antibiotics. Her grandmother is coming back into town tonight to help out again for the week. Thanks Grandma!