Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Archives 2

This is from January 8th

Hi all,

Just thought we'd drop a line every couple of days to give an update. At some point we'll cut back because progress will be slower, but for now we'll try to keep you posted.

Last night went very well. Joseph woke up a little and was able to answer a couple of easy questions. You can imagine that the opportunities for conversation are limited with a respirator tube stuck into his throat. The nurse told us that they were going to try and remove it this morning. For a while, having conversations with him will be like talking to someone with a concussion. He'll wake up, ask what time it is, how long he'll be there, what everything is, etc. and then go back to sleep. When he wakes up again we'll have the same conversation. Once they taper off a couple of the pain medications, that will also stop and he'll remember better between naps.

The big thing they watch for now are signs of rejection. They monitor his blood chemistry very closely so they can adjust the anti-rejection drugs as needed. It is given that his body will try to reject the new heart. It is a foreign object and will be treated as such. Normally that response saves our lives before we even think we're in danger. In the case of a transplant, the opposite is true. So they watch his liver and kidney function and pretty much anything else. He will be on strong doses of immuno-suppressive drugs for a while. Eventually, most will be discontinued, but he will always take some form of anti-rejection medication.

That's kind of the long way around to saying that he looks good. We got to see him at about 4 pm yesterday. His color is good. His abdominal swelling from before surgery is reduced, his hands and feet were warm to the touch. So far everything is as good as could be hoped for. Thank you all for your continued prayers. They make a difference.

If you don't want to get these potentially longish ramblings, send me an e-mail and I'll stop sending them to you.

While Joseph is in intensive care, we must turn off our cell phones. You can call (801)662-2406. That is the phone in his room. If we are there, we will talk. If we are not, the nurses won't be able to give you any information about him. If you can't find us by his bed, try us at home (801) 374-9687 or on our cell (801) 372-2073. The intensive care unit really doesn't want a lot of visitors except parents and grandparents. They're not really even too excited about brothers and sisters. So, please don't plan to go visit Joseph without talking to us first.

Thanks again for everything,

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