Saturday, July 13, 2013

Anatoly Hospitalized part 3

Osteomyelitis. I didn't know what it was. Even if I had, I would not have understood the magnitude of Toly's infection. The pain which had begin days before was due to a staph infection deep inside his bones, one that showed on the MRI as many round holes or lesions in his tiny arm bones. It looked like more of the bone was infected than not. From tip to tip, and spreading into the radius.

As the doctors became so fond of telling me, they don't usually see 'osteo' like this. Usually is is a small abscess or maybe two, nothing spread out over this much bone. But staph is an aggressive bug, and is good at hiding in bone. No wonder my boy was in so much pain. I hardly had time to think, if only they had seen this Tuesday! Maybe it would have been less severe.

I can't find an MRI image online that compares to Toly's.


We were admitted and IV antibiotics- Vancomycin- were administered. They explained that Vancomycin was their big guns, and that they hoped to get a culture of the bone eventually to see if they could tailor the drugs. Turns out that 'eventually' would be very soon, because the bone doctors came in right away to tell me that Toly was scheduled for surgery in the morning.
The surgery would be investigative/ They planned to aspirate the bone in 3 or 4 places to see if they could get anything out of the pockets of infection. They chose the best locations based on accessibility. I signed consent forms which said that if they chose they would also drill into locations and remove infected bone and marrow. All of this would be done under general anesthesia.

The morning of the surgery. Toly insisted on holding the infected arm up above his head during the worst part of the infection.


Toly was really concerned about the mask, so we asked them not to use it. I wish I had discussed their methods more because this time the anesthesia went off without a hitch. Toly fell asleep in my arms and they took him away. The doctor's name was Pandya.

Doctor Pandya put his initials on the arm. Toly was in a lot of pain here.

I was a mess of course. It went rather quickly. He was out and in the recovery room where I was allowed to be with him. The waking from anesthesia went poorly with Toly kicking and disoriented. They gave him a little 'Doctor Bear"which was the first thing he focused on and responded to.

It took him a long time to really wake up. We were back in our room before he seemed totally conscious.

They had gone ahead and drilled in at one location after deciding that they could reach this pocket without jeopardizing bone structure. They used a drain to let pus and infection out. They got material for cultures. Back in our room, they tried to make Toly comfortable with morphine.


I will continue the story soon. Right now I need sleep.


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