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Finally, done with the HiCy!!
March 17th, 2008 by Chenell

I am happy to say Chris is back with me at the hotel tonight. The doctor saw him around 10am and we were signing discharge papers at 12:35pm. Chris was very impatient waiting to get out. While we were waiting we got another visit from Carrie Trecker with Dr. Kerr’s office. At least this time Chris was conscious enough to carry on a conversation with her. I guess she is getting pretty busy with inquiries. She is a sweetheart and has been so accommodating with our questions along this process.

Chris’ nurse had me signing discharge instructions saying what to look for and what kinds of meds hes got to take and how often. I thought he had a pharmacy before, jeesh! They sent us home with 5 different drugs. The nurse said she faxed his Rx’s down to the pharmacy, but they only had two of them ready when we got down there.

Chris couldn’t hang with the smell of food in the lobby and I had to run and get a bag for him to yack in while I was talking to the pharmacy clerk. They go through each medicine one by one before the put them in the bags. I guess it’s a pretty good check system. I have a few more things to iron out with United Healthcare. It seems one medicine, Fluconazole, they need a prior authorization for and I have to call this woman tomorrow about it. They gave us a 5 day supply of it and I had to sig something saying I would pay $150 for the 10 pills if the authorization didn’t go through. The clerk wasn’t too worried about it, she says they are almost always approved. The Fluconcazole is an antifungal to prevent fungal infections. Also, United Healthcare only wants to pay for 30 of the Valtrex antiviral medicine (yes, the herpes medicine!). The doctor has prescribed 3 a day, so that is only a 10 day supply. I looked at a printout they included with it and it says 30 pills costs $618.30. If they aren’t going to cover it for the rest of the month, and however long the doc wants him on this, we are going to be in some serious financial pain. I will talk to the pharmacy person who has to get the authorization for the other drug tomorrow. If he gets hospitalized again because they don’t want to cover this stuff it will end up costing them a lot more. I think it is in their best interest to cover this med. He was also sent home with two antibiotics: Norfloxacin and Amoxicillin. He’s got to take the Norfloxacin twice a day and the Amoxicillin three times a day. They also gave him a prescription for the Ativan they were giving him in his IV but in pill form.

We got back to the hotel and I had to walk over to the Walgreens to get a thermometer so I can check Chris’ temperature regularly. If he gets a fever he has to be hospitalized because than means he may have an infection. I also walked to the grocery store after going back to JH. I’m glad we’re downtown where I have a lot of places within walking distance. I can’t carry too much at a time, but it saves me cab fare. Besides, walking is good for ya. :)
The more and more time passes, the better Chris is feeling. He got another sponge bath because he felt gross. The chemo makes him feel like something is trying to crawl out of his skin. He describes the infusion as someone pumping heroin and draino into his veins. Chris is pretty much over his nausea and hasn’t taken any Antivan since the dose he took when we got back to the hotel. The roads to JH are rather bumpy because of all the construction going on there. Chris has been eating, but very light small meals. Today he had a couple of cookies and munched on cold breaded chicken strips. He has found that his vision issues go away if he is well hydrated. His eyes get a little blurry, he eats some grapes and hes better. It’s good to have something so obvious to tell us he’s dehydrated.

Chris’ next appointment is tomorrow morning at 8:30am in the IPOP. They will be taking his blood on a daily basis to make sure that his levels are ok and to check his cell count. Once the white blood cells hit zero he will start on a drug that will kick start his bone marrow into making new blood cells and make his new immune system. I have to monitor him closely while he’s at the hotel to make sure he doesn’t get any infections or catch something. Since it’s cold/flu season it is especially important. Chris will need to wear a mask when out and about. I should probably wear one when I go to the store as well.

It’s good to have Chris home. The hospital was depressing. The whole Weinberg building is a cancer center. There were many many people in there looking so much more ill than Chris. He likes being here at “home” because it is so much more comfortable and he doesn’t have nurses bugging him all the time. I like it because I can start on these posts a lot earlier in the evening than what I was.

We have a very early day ahead of us, I’m out of here.

Goodnight!

Chenell

4 Responses to “Finally, done with the HiCy!!”
  1. Maggie Mae Says:
    March 18th, 2008 at 7:59 am

    Chris and Chenell,

    Today I finally read your posts and saw the pictures. It is wonderful that you are tracking the procedure in such detail. Maybe they will make a documentary about Chris’ treatment someday. I think of him everyday and pray that he will soon be doing the things he can only now dream of.

  2. Laura, your nurse Says:
    March 18th, 2008 at 10:09 am

    eeeh emmmm!!! what’s this I read, “the nurses bugging him all of the time?” :) ;)

    It’s great to be able to jump on here and track your progress.. I really enjoy reading these blogs and hearing about this oh-so-familiar process from the perspective of a patient and his family (aka his fantastic wife). Plus, I’m just really excited to be able to hear about how things go for you.

    It was a pleasure being your nurse and getting to spend so much time with you both.

    I wish you the very best!

    -Laura, RN :)

  3. Dad Says:
    March 18th, 2008 at 11:51 am

    Honey, Glad to hear Chris is getting through this okay, he’s a tough guy and hopefully will be back on his feet soon. You’re a tough one too! Hang in there, I hope to see you both soon.
    Love you,
    Dad

  4. Lew (Loobie) Says:
    March 18th, 2008 at 5:44 pm

    And to quote the great thinker Homer – “Woo-Hoo!”