I’m so happy to report that they are sending us home with an IV!!
Never thought that sentence would come out of my mouth. But I am really happy that they are finding different ways to treat this. Dr. Lantis, who discharged us last Sunday, said she was afraid to come see us in case Grammie was here because we had landed right back in the hospital. 🙂 The first thing she said when she came in the room was “There is no way you’re leaving here without a PICC line.” What’s a PICC line? After the break…
From the ultimate authority on everything, Wikipedia:
A peripherally inserted central catheter- (PICC or PIC line) is a form of intravenous access that can be used for a prolonged period of time, e.g. for long chemotherapy regimens, extended antibiotic therapy or total parenteral nutrition. A PICC is inserted in a peripheral vein, such as the cephalic vein, basilic vein, or brachial vein and then advanced through increasingly larger veins, toward the heart until the tip rests in the distal superior vena cava or cavo-atrial junction. PICC lines generally will remain in place no longer than 30 days, although duration of use varies from just a few days in patients requiring short courses of chemotherapy or biotherapy to a year for patients requiring longer treatment. Commonly, other forms of intravenous access are considered if the treatment course is protracted. While replacement is generally considered a year post-insertion, patients have survived with the same PICC in situ for several years without complication.
So basically, there is a long tube, probably 8-12 inches long that will be inserted into her arm and threaded through her veins until the tip is near her heart. Her meds will be administered through this line twice a day. She’ll be able to do most everything she normally does and we’ll just hook her up twice a day for meds.
They’ve had trouble getting her sedated for the procedure. The first sedative didn’t take – they think it’s because she’s pretty stressed and scared and she’s really fighting it. They’ve just given her something else and hopefully this one will work. She’ll wake up with PICC line and be so much happier as her latest IV has gotten very swollen and irritated.
She’ll start her next IVIG transfusion at about midnight tonight, and it will take 12 hours to administer. I suspect we’ll be able to go home on Monday. Stay tuned!