This morning, they performed a test I had actually never heard of, called a Bubble Echocardiogram. Now, the fact that I had never heard of this particular test is notable, because I am something of a medical geek. I follow all the (worthwhile) medical shows (Bones, House, as examples), and have for the past two years held Medical Power of Attorney for Barbara. As sick as she has been, though, the issues really have not been cardiac before now.
We don’t have the results of the bubble study yet. What I do know is that the clot is roughly 5 centimeters, and has moved into the right atrium. The purpose for the study this morning was to determine the risk of the clot moving into the brain. That is unlikely without a malformation in the heart, specifically a ventricular septal defect. If blood were able to flow directly between the two chambers of the heart, the risk of this clot getting into the brain would be quite high, and would necessitate more drastic treatments. It’s unlikely though.
I saw her surgeon this morning, and he is unconcerned about the wound. Quote, in reference to her possible fistula, “I don’t think this is anything.” That’s good news. Combine that with the fact that she is back on a regular diet as of breakfast today, and it’s clear that there are no real concerns about the intestines. He also said that as far as he was concerned, the only issue was to get her “sufficiently anti-coagulated”.
So here she is in ICU until the clot breaks down, and she has a therapeutic level of heparin on board. She is currently on a continuous drip. If that is required after she is ready to leave ICU, she will most likely be sent back to the LTAC. Heparin management is generally beyond the scope of a SNF .
I’ll continue to post updates as they occur, and as time permits. To follow only those posts as they occur, use this link: lasarina hospitalization.