Archive for February 8th, 2010

No, Really!

Every nurse who has come on-shift since I was admitted on Wednesday has been shocked that I’m not eating. I mean, I get that it’s not normal, but there’s bound to be a notation in my chart somewhere that says “hyperemesis gravidarum” right? They give each other report at the start/end of each shift. And yet? Every nurse that’s come on shift has said, “You ate [dinner/breakfast/whatever], right?” Um, no. I haven’t had a tray in my room since I came in here (a couple of nurses have offered trays – so it’s not that I’m being neglected, it’s that I have no desire to have a tray of food in my room that I know I’ll never touch).

It’s not limited to the nurses, though. The OB on call came in today to assess me and let me know “the plan” – which is to keep me here at least until I get my 17-P injection tomorrow and a new PICC line (one of the lumens on my existing PICC line is completely obstructed and the medication they usually use to dissolve issues like that isn’t used in pregnant women). But she paused and asked where the terb pump was running – it’s subcutaneous. “Oh, well, you don’t need the PICC line then.” Um. Yes, yes I do. The Zofran pump runs through the PICC line and I can’t run that one subcutaneously even if I wanted to – because doses as high as I’m getting would tear up my skin if done sub-q. Oh, and there’s that hydration thing. “Well, you can’t take the Zofran ODTs? You need the pump at home, too?” Yes, I need the pump at home, too. I can’t keep the ODTs down. (Also, they don’t work as well as when the drug is continually infused). “Why do you need the fluids?” Because I can’t drink anything of substance? “Really? How long has this been going on?” Um. September. I get that she wasn’t my doctor back in September when this started, nor in October when I was hospitalized for dehydration due to hyperemesis gravidarum, nor when my first OR second PICC line were placed. But I still find it hard to believe that there’s NOTHING in my chart ANYWHERE that mentions that I’m hyperemetic. The doctor conceded that I do need to keep my PICC, so it’ll be replaced tomorrow.

Seriously – the nursing staff keeps very close tabs on my “I’s and O’s” (Ins and Outs). They know what I’m taking in. They know I’m not drinking. They *should* know I’m not eating (no food trays have come into or left my room since I’ve been here). And yet, they seem shocked when they hear that I haven’t eaten since before I was admitted. How do I make it more clear? I really hope I get to go home tomorrow. I’m growing weary of the hospital (a.k.a. the worst hotel EVER).

In other annoyances:

  • My skin is so dry that it’s becoming abraded. My knuckles are cracking. My legs are itchy. My lips are chapped and split. Apparently the air is very dry in hospitals – and more importantly, I’m not getting a lot of fluids, so my skin just can’t stay hydrated. This is annoying, but hopefully I won’t be here much longer. If I had to move in for the duration, though, I’d have to get a humidifier or something.
  • TMI Alert: One of the best things about getting OFF the magnesium sulfate is that they removed my catheter and let me resume “bedrest with bathroom privileges”. Except, it’s really a pain in the neck to get up to go to the restroom. I have to unplug the toco monitor (contraction monitor) and wrap the cord around my shoulders so it doesn’t drag. I have to untangle my Zofran and Terbutaline pumps. I have to undo the sequential compression stocking things. I have to unplug the IV Pump. And then I have to carry everything to the bathroom. Then I come back and I have to plug in the IV Pump, untangle the Zofran and Terb Pumps, and plug the toco monitor back in. And get myself back into bed, which is a much more difficult task than it sounds. I am ready to be home where it is less of a production just to get up and pee (mind you, even at home it’s a production, but at least there are SLIGHTLY fewer things to unplug).
  • I have the toco monitor on my belly 24/7 to monitor for contractions. It stays on with a softish belt that straps around me. It’s not tight, but it *is* against my skin 24/7 and now the skin on my belly is abraded from the constant contact. At least at home I’ll only have to have have the toco monitor on for an hour at a time (minimum of 2 times per day). That will definitely be an improvement.
  • Several times per day, they do NSTs (nonstress tests) – this means that in addition to the toco, they put a fetal heart rate monitor on also. This evening during one such NST, the baby’s heart rate decelerated with every contraction I was having. This is… not good. Fortunately, I’d just recently gotten Procardia, so the contractions went down shortly thereafter. Hopefully, this will not reoccur because I’m… not actually sure what all the implications of it recurring would be. I’m pretty sure it’s far too early for me to want to find that one out the hard way.

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