Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Quick Note - Ken in Hospital

Just to let our regular and beloved readers know, the Higginsville weekend adventure is not posted because we had to take Ken in to the hospital Monday night.

This is now his second 'obstruction' in 12 days as a result of his Crohn's disease.

Ken has had Crohn's for over 30 years now with 4 major ressection surgeries during that time. It had been running a surgery every 7 years. This time he has made it 10 years. Contrary to most Crohn's sufferers, Ken's Crohn's never goes in to remission. The surgeries come when the place most attacked by the disease, where the large and small bowel meet, gets so inflamed with disease that is totally closes down his intestine. The result is, like last night, a rush to the emergency room where they stick in an NG tube to pump out of him what can't make its way through, and they load him up with morphine-like painkillers and steroids. The steroids will usually reduce the inflammation enough to get things to open up at least a little. That is what happened 12 days ago and the reason Ken carries those nasty drugs with him at all times. But, this time, Ken's self-administration of steroids wasn't enough.

You only have so much intestine so the doctors try to put off surgery as long as possible. There is no cure and the surgery is only a temporary solution since the disease immediately reactivates at the points of the ressection. Of course, when these obstructions become recurrent it comes down to a quality of life issue. Ken also prefers to be able to schedule surgery in St. Louis rather than face emergency surgery in Quincy if the steroids don't provide relief.

So needless to say there is the possibility that we could be heading to St. Louis in the near future to visit the GI surgeons at Wash U.

We were originally suppose to be on vacation this week so I guess its good we had our last minute changes.

So until the obstruction clears, Ken is on the dreaded 'nothing by mouth' routine--now there is a no-fail diet for you! So long as he doesn't eat or drink anything, they keep him on IV's and they keep the NG tube pumping things out, he feels fine! There's no signs yet that the blockage has let up, but history has been that it could take 2-3 days.

So keep him in your thoughts and prayers and I'll try to keep you posted!

Hugs, C


Anonymous said...

Sending get well/better wishes to Ken. Hope all goes well. Take Care!!

Anonymous said...

We've been thinking about you. Sure hope things go well for Ken. Please keep us updated. Wes goes in for his first surgery June 19. The latest colonoscopy showed cancer and he is having most of his colon removed. These guys sure put up with a lot, don't they? Praying for TWO miracles :-)

Keep in touch.