Saturday, February 6, 2010

Breathing Matters

Michael's index finger has become infected once again, and so he called his GP yesterday and got an appointment in the afternoon. When he let me know, I was willing to get a sub for the half-day and come home to take him, but my sister was with him and she willing to take him. His mom ended up going with them, too. I had confidence in them to take good care of him.

I told my sister on the phone that she needed to be Michael's advocate, and that I thought the GP needed to know how bad Michael's breathing issues have become. I was hopeful that he could do something for Michael as we have been waiting for two weeks for our insurance company to give us all the referrals we need to see the pulmonologist. Actually, they approved our request to see the pulmonologist, but they denied the doctor's request for several tests he wanted Michael to have before the appointment. I'm sure our insurance company wanted him to see the doctor, then have the tests, then see the doctor again. That's the way they like things to go.

Anyway, his GP said his infected finger is secondary to his breathing issues. But, he did prescribe him some antibiotics for the finger, and referred him to a dermatologist for additional treatment. Then he said that Michael either needed to get an appointment by Monday or Tuesday with a pulmonologist, or he was going to have to go to the ER again where he could have all the tests needed right away and begin treatment. My sister was able to get him an appointment with a pulmonologist at Santa Monica/UCLA Hospital for Monday morning next week. Michael does not want to go back to the hospital again at all, but I have a feeling that on Monday the pulmonologist will send him to the ER so he can have all those tests that day and begin treatment.

I told Michael that he's going to have to go with the flow and that we'll do what the doctor recommends. I thought he had a pretty good experience at the hospital recently, and he definitely benefitted from the treatment he received there. But, he does not want to die in a hospital, and I respect that. I've tried to point out that they (the doctors) don't want him to die in the hospital either. They want to do what they can to improve on his condition, and that if there's nothing they can do for him they will send us home and tell us to contact hospice care. It seems that all the blood draws they did in the hospital were really bothersome to him. That's something he's brought up more than once. After all the needles I endured for IVF, I have little sympathy for that reasoning.

But I do sympathize with what he's going through. He can't really sleep at night because of the way the fluid builds up in his lungs and constricts his breathing. Then he has a coughing fit. It seems like he sleeps for about an hour at a time before he needs to wake up and clear everything out again. So, he makes up for the lost sleep during the day as he sits on the couch and takes cat naps. He's taking one as I type this.

His appetite has been good, but he hasn't been able to put on weight. At least he's maintaining his weight. I don't see how he could lose anymore really. He's just a wisp of a thing now.

We keep waiting for him to turn the corner, gain weight, and get stronger. Thank you for continuing to pray with us for those things and complete healing.


Shelley said...

Oh Joannah, you are so strong. Hang in there girl. My prayers are with you and Michael.

Sandra said...

I agree with Shelley, you are a very strong and courageous woman. However, I also cannot imagine what you are going through and I am sure that there must be so much anger, fear and sadness for you.

Sending you many, many hugs!

Donna said...


AprilMay said...

I pray every day for you and Michael. I am glad your sister got him an appointment, and I will pray that the appointment will be the turning point!

dawn said...

How on earth can an insurance company quibble over stuff as important as breathing...URGH.

Hoping that you both get a breathe of fresh air shortly.

Michele said...

thoughs and prayers....
I am very sorry you both are going through this :-(

Polar Bear said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you both.

Calico Sky said...

Praying for you both each day. I can not imagine what it is like to try to battle these companies, I just think you have such fortitude and I marvel at you from afar!


Homemaker Ang said...

hi joannah, this seems so uncompassionate to comment on a blog with circumstances such as these.

I feel very sad reading this post about hospice???????????? Am I missing something here that this is worse than I thought with M?

I feel horribly for you both. I am so sorry. I hope to be mistaken but not sure I understand and thought he was an early stage?

My prayers are SO with you and I am still praising HIM for M's salvation.

Its ok to cry...

xx Ang

Alex and Jill said...

I don't usually use the word hate, but I hate that you and Michael are going through this. I hate cancer.