i was transferred to the 5th floor of on Dec 17, 2015. I had a lovely lady as a roommate for most of the time on the 5th floor. At around 8 pm I was settled into the window portion of a room.
Life on the main floor meant that you had to have more patience. The nurses in the ICU were responsible for at most 3 patients at a time, normally 2. The nurses on the main floor were responsible for at most 5 patients, normally 4. The responsibility of ICU nurses verses main floor nurses is not very comparable but it tended to take a little longer to get pain medications and get help to the rest room, as an example on the main floors of the hospital. The service from the nurses and nurses aides was wonderful though.
During my time on the 5th floor I struggled with reducing the amount of Morphine I was using. At the onset I was taking doses of Morphine five to six times a day. The surgeon stopped by everyday. Our goal was to get me down to only taking hydrocodone and a migraine headache medication. I was frustrated, tired of being in the hospital and in tears some days when I meet with the surgeon.
The surgeon and I tried to reduce the amount of Morphine with each dosage and increase the quantity of dosages I could take one day and night. It was too hard to get the Morphine in a timely manner because I could have it every two hours. I was in great pain when the surgeon checked on me in the morning. The pain was not controlled.
The surgeon’s biggest concern was that I was going to have a headache for months after leaving the hospital. Obviously when I was first told this I was disheartened. At this point I was on a Fentonol patch and regular dosages of Morphine.
Eventually, the pain became more manageable. The Surgeon decided to reduce the Fentonol patch and I was able to start taking Hydrocodone and alternate with a migraine medication.
The pain was manageable to a point where I could leave the hospital. It was wonderful news. The surgeons wanted to do one final angiogram to check on the pipeline installation and the drying up of the aneurysm.
A couple of days before I left the hospital they took me down to the neurologic suite for a third angiogram. The nurse was there to send me down with a shot of Morphine. What a great idea, I had no idea how much I needed the Morphine until I got to the procedure. I was awake the entire time and could feel the needle go into my skin near the groin. It was so uncomfortable, the most uncomfortable angiogram I had had. I was so mad that I was not advised that I would be able to feel everything.
The angiogram took a half hour to an hour. I was returned to a recuperation room for an hour and then my room after that. Mom and Dad got back to my room shortly after I got back. I related the fact that I was awake for the whole thing and was mad about it. Mom and Dad stayed with me for about two hours while I had to lay flat on my back to allow the angiogram incision healed enough to sit up. The surgeons assistant stopped by to let us know that the aneurysm was shrinking very quickly, maybe too fast. The aneurysm was about 75% the size it was when they found it. They had plans to modify some of my medication to reduce the shrinkage of the aneurysm.
Now that I had the pain management under control and they had done the last of the angiogram I was ready to go home. It was December 21st. I had been in the hospital for 17 days. I was excited and scared to go home.
After some car trouble, lunch and a running back to the hospital for some medication scripts left behind Mom and Dad and I left for home. The things I noticed when returning home was that I was able to get up the back steps of the house and taking a shower wasn’t easy but it wasn’t horribly difficult either. Both of these things, and many other things, would become more difficult shortly. For now sleeping in my own bed was wonderful!