Monday, January 29, 2018

January Update

Location: New Rockdale RV Park; Mansfield, Louisiana

Here is the typical advisory to readers about this post: Although this blog is primarily about RV travels, it is also a means to document some important events in mine and my family's lives. It is my hope that my grandchildren and their children will be able to read it in the decades to come. This post is another update on the medical issues of my youngest son, Brandon. The posts in this blog, even those that are not travel related, are open to anyone to read and on which to make comments. The comments are encouraged. Just letting the readers know that this post is not about travel.

My last post was about 6 weeks ago and many things have happened during that time. Brandon was released from the hospital after his successful double by-pass open heart surgery. He began Cardiac Re-hab at the end of December and goes three times a week for one hour per visit. It will last for a total of 36 sessions and should wind up sometime in mid-March. Brandon has shown improvement during each session and other members of the re-hab group, as well as the staff, have commented on his improvement. The heart surgery made changes to his right arm and leg. These are the ones still affected by the previous strokes. The changes appear positive but we are still waiting to make sure. 

Brandon also started Peritoneal Dialysis on January 2nd due to his kidneys failing. Most people are not familiar with this type of dialysis; I know I wasn't. This type of dialysis still cleans the blood but does not come in direct contact with the blood stream. Brandon is able to do the dialysis by himself at night while he sleeps. His mother is available to assist if necessary but he has been doing it solo for a couple of weeks now. This option is much better than having to go into a dialysis center.
This is the dialysis machine that Brandon hooks up to each night. It is used to place fluid in his peritoneal cavity so it can attract the impurities in his blood and then drains them out. It is more complicated than that but that is the best summary I know.  
We anticipate the cardiologist to release Brandon fullly around the middle of February. That will be the last step so he can become active on the Kidney/Pancreas Transplant list. There are so many things that can knock you off the list so we have our fingers crossed. 

My daughter and granddaughter took Brandon to the new Aquarium that recently opened in Shreveport. A good time was had by all. This was taken about one month after his surgery. Amazing.

Brandon and I went to a car show. One of the cars was the Batmobile from the original Batman TV show. I remember, as a child, running home from cub scouts to be able to watch the show. This was about 6 weeks after surgery. 

I included this picture as a reference point and comparison to the two previous pictures. This was one day after the surgery and is taken in ICU. He sure has come a long way in a short time. 
Brandon also got his freedom back when he was released by the doctor to drive his truck in mid-January. It had been two months since he was able to drive and he acted as if he was a 16 year old again and just got his drivers license.

Brandon's condition has improved so much that I feel comfortable making preliminary plans to hit the road sometime in the next couple of months. 

Ya'll take care of each other. I'll see Cya down the road.