Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Big Day - Part Two

Well, true to form, my husband the perfectionist has decided he's going to be the best open heart surgery patient ever and without waiting for nurse Jenny, just decided to wake up on his own around 245pm. Great news EXCEPT nurse Jenny had sent me back to the hotel to rest (well, I actually worked on the previous post but whatever) and I missed that moment when he opened his eyes for the first time. I was bummed but after sprinting to the hospital, I found he very quickly forgets things so probably wouldn't remember that I wasn't actually there when he woke up. Of course, now that I've posted it here, he'll know forever but I think he'll forgive me!
He was pretty groggy at first but shortly after I arrived they extubated him since he could breathe fine on his own and didn't need the big tube down his throat. That allowed him to talk and after a bit of a slow start, he's talking up a storm and giving all the nurses and other caregivers a hard time (all in fun of course). He still has a lot of tubes and lines coming out of him but those will gradually come out and he gets to wear these fancy compression stockings to prevent blood clots while he's not moving around much. For someone who HATES wearing socks, he doesn't seem to mind them so much!
Jenny says he's doing phenomenally well but tomorrow might be a tough day b/c there's usually more pain and the chest tubes will probably come out. She also says patients are more crabby on the second day but overachiever is already there! He hasn't lost one bit of his humor or his ability to boss people around. I'm not complaining - this means he's doing well and returning to his normal self. It's amazing there once was a time when you had open heart surgery and were laid up in bed for weeks. Not so anymore - he was sitting up, doing stretching exercises and they even had him stand up for a few minutes. Tonight they plan to get him into a chair and tomorrow they say he'll be doing laps around ICU! Unbelievable...
Mike's surgeon, Dr. Reemtsen, stopped by to see how he was doing and agreed he's doing really well. He had stood on his own only moments before so was feeling a bit dizzy but it's amazing he was able to do that at all only hours after the surgery. He is also using his incentive spirometer quite regularly which helps the recovery process even more. This device helps patients expand their lung volume and get rid of fluid in the lungs by encouraging them to take deep breaths. The spirometer measures the volume of air inhaled - typically patients immediately postop are lucky to get to 500ml but Mike is getting volumes of 2500ml and more. Looks like being a diver pays off in more ways than we thought!
All in all, a really great day for Mike and for all of us. We hope for continued good progress and a speedy recovery.

Tune in tomorrow for the next installment of Mike's open heart surgery journal. Maybe it will be in Mike's own words (at this rate anything is possible) or you might have to read me for one more day!

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, we're thrilled to hear everything is going well. Also nice way to drive traffic to the blog. We've been checking constantly for a good news update. Matt and Stacey

mark r said...

Horay! And again, Thanks, Denise!When it comes to recovery, Mike 'll show em' how it's done!

Mike said...

CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can't believe you're up already. GREAT NEWS.

Bruce A. Bateman said...

Congrats on a successful operation, Mike!

I kind of like that spirometer. Reminds me of my college days. We sucked instead of blew, however. It bubbled, we laughed.

Hope you will feel better soon.

Rose said...

So glad to hear everthing is going so well. The ghostwriter is doing a great job! :) Thanks for keep us all informed. Many prayers still coming your way!

Mike said...

Don't sell yourself short, Bateman.

You suck AND blow. :)

Neil said...

That crazy Mike is such a show-off...

Glad to hear everything has gone remarkably well and the recovery has been swift. (And thanks for the updates Denise.)

All the best,

Neil & Laura

Anonymous said...

This is awesome news! We hope the recovery process continues to be this smooth. We love you guys!
Kristin and Dan

bigsoxfan said...

Wow, Mike looks like the retard I imagine from the larry the cable guy skits, but so glad to hear he came through the surgery well. How long 'till he can dive and document the undersea world of Saipan again? I'm sure he will want to whack me upside the head for my comment and I'll be in LA on the evening of 6 September, so take your best shot. Omigod, do those relaxing drugs really make you look like Harold from the Red Green show or was he faking it? Looking forward to an after 'pic and very happy he came through the surgery.

Brad said...

Great to hear he's pullin' thru like a champ! Looks like he's ready for a snorkel already. Hold off on the AL80 a few more days, even if he thinks he can handle it. Maybe a pony bottle wouldn't strain the healing chest bones too much but....NO, just tell him to wait a little while before strapping a tank onto his back.

Mike, I hope you can just close your eyes and imagine you're out at Wing Beach or Naftan or someplace other than an LA hospital room. If you can't, see Bruce, he might have something you can put in there that would induce, or at least increase the chances of, some good diving hallucinations.

mstdfw said...

Mike,You look pretty darn good there right after surgery! Keep it up and get home soon!!!

The Saipan Blogger アンジェロ・ビラゴメズ said...

Woohoo!

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear things went well. You should be really proud of this set of photos. We'll be watching for updates.
John & Dawn