My last article was a review of medical events over my first 88 years. Well, I will be 88 on August 31st and I have just lived through two more major events in my lengthy life. I had to wait until I could visit with my new Cardiologist yesterday to try to find out what happened..
I arrived at Memorial Hospital in Lufkin Texas at 7am Monday June 4th 2018 to get prepped for replacement of my right knee. My Surgeon, DR. Jason Carter, advised me he has shifted a couple of minor surgeries ahead of me and who am I to hurry him up? I just responded to be careful, I was in no hurry as my next probable tee time would be sometime in July.
Some time later, I guess it was about midnight on Wednesday, I awoke in Critical Care among total strangers, hungry and a sore right knee. I remember people discussing therapy, heart monitor surgery. My number one objective was to make sure I was to have therapy at the hospital in Hemphill. My planning was extremely detailed to match plans to care for my wife, Norma. I Was quite confused as to why I was still in Lufkin instead of Hemphill.
As I became cognizant my fear was lack of therapy on my new knee. Being in Critical Care established priorities based on crisis and my poor knee was not a priority.
My best guess is a Pacemaker was installed on Sunday evening, June 10th. This was a procedure that reminded me on my years working on Space Programs for NASA. The people were awesome as they performed about three hours of tedious operations as a team, well prepared and with flawless precision. I felt like a “Chicken on a Stick’ being roasted up in the air suspended.
I was excited that I might get moved on Monday to the hospital in Hemphill but the news was horrible. The Pacemaker had a loose wire and it required a new Device be installed Monday evening that took another 3 hours.
The testing required Tuesday was successful and after a long talk with the Cardiologists they approved moving me to the Hemphill Hospital.
They would not let me ride in the car with my son for reasons they would not explain and I was running a week behind my desired tee time schedule because I now have a Pacemaker.
The ambulance ride from Lufkin to Hemphill was an event never to be forgotten. I Just thought I was stabilized for the ride of a lifetime. We arrived physically about 4 pm but it was at least 8pm before my mind arrived.
I had two days of therapy before my golf friends came to visit on Friday afternoon. I was still trying to reconstruct the events that happened in Lufkin when I was notified I would be returning to Lufkin Tuesday Morning to visit with the Surgeon and the Cardiologists. I was scared that it would require another ambulance ride and ecstatic when I found out I could use my car and whoever I desired to drive me both directions.
My friend Tim “T” Picked me up about 9:30 Tuesday morning for the first appointment with Dr. Jason Carter. They X-Rayed my knee, advised me the new knee was doing great and the nurse proceeded to remove the staples from my knee. As the Surgeon had completed his work before anything happened connected to the Pacemaker I still had no clue what caused the Pacemaker.
We proceeded to our next appointment with the Cardiologists who had visited with me and was instrumental in the Pacemaker I am wearing today. They ran another EKG and spent a long time with paperwork.
I asked the Doctor if he knew why I got the Pacemaker. He told me he was on duty in the ER on the 4th. He said he was summoned to ICU where I was located and I had fallen out of the bed and was lying on the floor. He said I was not coherent and I am sure I may will likely never know what happened or why I now wear the Device?
My stay continues in the Swing Bed re-hab program at Sabine County Hospital. We are so fortunate to have our hospital managed and manned by caring and professional Doctors, Nurses and the support staff of Healthcare Professionals. This program allows my family to care for my wife Norma while I am being prepared for my new “Bionic” phase of life. The story will continue.
My beautiful Bride and I will celebrate 58 years of marriage tomorrow, June 23rd.