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Old 01-15-2018, 01:51 AM   #1
broganmc
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Default Grandpa Mohawk very sick (prayers welcome)

Hi everyone,

I had hoped I'd never have to write this or it would come many years from now. Nonetheless I must report my dad is in very ill. He's currently in the ICU of our local hospital.

He had been dealing with some health issues over the last few months. (At 85 you have a litany of issues to treat and balance.) We couldn't quite figure out why things were going awry because everything seemed to have another reasonable explanation. He's been going to wound care for psoriasis sores on his lower legs. He's had general weakness from acute anemia ( a condition we've been treating for over a year with Aranesp injections). He's had fluid retention around his middle from compression of his lower legs and lack of walking. And he's had ulcers form in random places, again from contact abrasions.

Just before we left for Disney over NYE he visited several of his doctors for continuing care. Things seemed under control. And indeed he had a good time with us in Florida, despite the cold. But when we returned, his energy was low and his leg sores were worsening. This week things became dramatically worse and apparent what caused it.

He was diagnosed on Wednesday with Methotrexate Toxicity. Methotrexate is a medicine he takes to temper his psoriatic arthritis. (I take it as well for my JRA.) He had been fine with it for almost 2 years. They raised his dosage slightly in September and wacky things began to happen. Basically Methotrexate robs cells of folic acid and causes them to die. Despite all precautions, the methotrexate spontaneously acted to shut down his bone marrow. That means he is no longer producing red or white blood cells or platelets. His counts are critically low, almost nonexistent.

In addition to that, Friday morning he woke up and fell getting out of bed. Lightheadedness and weakness at play. He banged up his right elbow pretty good. Nothing broken but he did bleed pretty badly. My nephew and I had paramedics take him to the hospital where he's been ever since.

My amazing family has been with him around the clock. The grandkids are old enough now they have busy lives and schedules but still dropped everything to come. My niece and her boyfriend drove all the way from college in Winchester, VA Friday to be with him and take care of me overnight. (I'm independent mostly but I still need help with some things.) And we've all been taking turns staying overnight by my dad's beside offering whatever assistance or comfort we can.

He is in serious condition, hovering between grave and critical. Today was especially difficult because despite the many transfusions his bone marrow has still not kicked in. He's stopped bleeding but he has fluid and blood in his lungs making it difficult to breathe. We all spent the weekend watching his monitors and tracking his heart rate, BP and oxygen saturation. He's being given a combination of 100% oxygen rebreather (think old fashioned oxygen mask) and a humidifier with oxygen. Those mouth throat sores are very painful and raw.

I am my dad's chosen representative. I forget what you call it but I basically fill the role of spouse. It got very shocking and horrible today when I had several doctors asking me about his Advance Directives and looking for guidance how far to treat this fragile 85 yr old man. Fortunately, Dad and I have been talking about this stuff ever since my mom passed away 14 years ago. We both have estate plans, living wills, trusts, power of attorneys and directives setup. We even have grave plots waiting. (My mom insisted we buy 4 plots hen she died so my dad and I would have a place beside her. Yes, that is a very eerie thing to live with.)

But you know my dad and I. We're fighters. Life has dealt us lemons but we always turn them into interesting frosty lemonades.

So please please send up your prayers for my dad and our family. We have two more trips planned this year (to Disney for my second cousin's first ever Disney princess trip and to Williamsburg with the whole family over the summer) and a third one I'm working on to Disney for the whole family in October. Plus my dad is still working and has a close staff all relying on him and praying for him. He knows he has a lot left to live for. (His grandchildren insist he's got to be around to see them marry and have kids.) We keep telling my mom's spirit, we love her but she can't have Dad yet. God willing that will be true.

I'll keep you posted as I can.
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Old 01-15-2018, 04:54 AM   #2
EEGRAM
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Keeping you all in my prayers. Remember to take care of yourself during this time also. You need your rest to keep up your strength.
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Old 01-15-2018, 07:49 AM   #3
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i am so sorry. glad they found the problem. my thoughts are with you and grandpa in this difficult time.
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Old 01-15-2018, 07:58 AM   #4
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Praying for your entire family, Jen.
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Old 01-15-2018, 09:16 AM   #5
Lamima
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So sorry you are going through this. Sending my thoughts and prayers. And
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Old 01-15-2018, 09:38 AM   #6
reblzmom
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So VERY sorry to hear this. As others have said, take care of yourself, too. I know you have a tremendous support group - let them help. We are opposite, Jen - I lost my father at a young age and was fortunate to have my mom until just a few years ago. So reading the reports of your trips with your dad was always special to me. Prayers for you and the family.
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Old 01-15-2018, 10:03 AM   #7
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So sorry to hear. Prayers and best wishes at this difficult time.
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Old 01-15-2018, 10:05 AM   #8
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Jen.....Big hugs to you and Grandpa!



We will certainly he you both in our prayers!

You tell your dad to stop messing around and get a working on getting better.

Last year, we had a similar situation with my grandfather. He was 98 and was in the hospital after having a stroke. The doctors turned to "us" (the grandkids) for making all medical decisions. It is not an easy burden to bear with those types of decisions.

Jen.....Please call if you need anything.
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Old 01-15-2018, 10:16 AM   #9
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Saying prayers for your Dad and all the medical staff helping and making decisions in your Dad's best interest. Stay strong and realize you shouldn't have to take on everything. You have a wonderful family. Let the help support you when you need it. Big hugs.
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Old 01-15-2018, 11:26 AM   #10
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Sending many prayers to you and your dad. Although I have never commented on your trip reports, I have enjoyed them thoroughly particularly the adventures you have with your dad. Sending healing vibes to your dad and continued strength to you as well.
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