Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Knee News

We went to the orthopedic surgeon today an got great news. The way that Chads leg is broken,  will most likely not require surgery. He explained that the knee, unlike other joints/limbs doesn't have to be perfect and the dislocation of the broken bones is within the acceptable space that surgery may cause more harm than benefit.

They did give him a fancy new brace and told him to start with some very gentle bending. Thr doctor praised him for what Chad has already been doing (with bending, flexing, ice, etc.,) and said hes been doing perfect .

He is not allowed to put any weight on it for at least 8 weeks.

We have a follow up appointment for his knee and his toe on May 2.

So now it's a waiting game and hoping for speedy healing.

Thanks for your love and prayers! This week has been challenging with the health stuff and lightening hitting the property but your support helps brighten the dark days. Xoxo

Monday, March 19, 2018

Bubble Wrap Anyone?

If nothing else, life is not uneventful. 

I told everyone previously how Chad broke his leg, right? Well that wasn't enough of an obstacle for him. He decided to lose his balance on the steps, fall face first and break his toe on his good foot.

A broken toe is not usually a big deal but when its on the only foot that renders you mobile, it proves to be an unwelcome challenge.

As always though, Chad is figuring out how to adjust.

In other news, our house was struck by lightening too this weekend. The fun never ends eh?

Chad heard back from the VA this morning and his consult with an orthopedic surgeon is on Wednesday and it's local so that's wonderful news. We should have a better idea of what we are looking after by Wednesday afternoon.

Whatever it may be, we are PRAYING for best case scenario of a lousy situation. Your love,  prayers and thoughts are so beyond appreciated. I'm not exaggerating when I say they are sometimes all that keeps us going. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you

Monday, March 12, 2018

Never Ending Fun!

The never ending cycle that is Chads health reared it's ugly head again this past weekend as my loving, but accident prone husband severely injured his knee by falling while doing some side work.

Truth? He fell off a bucket.  He was edging in some trim work on the ceiling. The ceilings are too low for a ladder but too high to reach, so he was standing on a 5 Gallon bucket. Less than two feet off the ground. He lost his balance and actually landed on his feet. However, the way he landed - it is believed he hyper extended his knee, it shot back - he heard a pop. I found him crumpled in the floor in agony.

We spent Saturday afternoon in our local emergency department. They gave him an x ray which did not determine much as there was a lot of swelling and fluid. There were no obvious breaks but that's about it. They said we needed an MRI and to consult an orthopedic surgeon. They gave him a prescription for pain, a set of crutches and a mobilization brace.

Today, we had a scheduled appointment for pain management follow up for Chads back.

The good news:  There's only a small bit of disc degeneration but generally speaking his lower back spine is in good shape. This means no surgery. All of his pain can be contributed to muscle issues.

The Bad News: There is basically no treatment plan. The doctor would not prescribe injections. The only thing he was willing to do was put in for an acupuncture consult and suggested water aerobic training to help strengthen his core to alleviate the stress on his back. When they split Chad open for his cancer surgery in 2015,  all of his stomach muscles were cut, which meant his back had to do all the work in supporting his frame - so we believe all that stress on his back is the contributing factor to his pain. Only time will tell where this is concerned.

Right now, his knee has become our major focus. He is unable to walk and cannot put any pressure on his right leg.

We went to the ER here in Marion, IL to get them to run the MRI since that is the next set of images that needs to be obtained in order to determine what is wrong and how severe the injury is. We hit a ton of roadblocks. Originally we were told the ER couldn't order an MRI.  We were instructed to call Chads local clinic and request they submit a request. Then they told us they would need the paper work from the ER visit on the weekend and that they couldn't do an X-Ray and an MRI on the same day due to radiation. Huh, what!? First things first. He already had an X-Ray done on the weekend, we just needed that from our local hospital.

So, I called there and they needed us to sign a release form. Since that clearly wasn't an option considering we were 2.5 hours away we were able to get the hospital here to fax a request.

It seemed like a miracle had been answered when Chads local doctor went ahead and put in an order for an MRI. That is until the radiology department here said the absolute earliest they could get us in was Thursday.

Chad can't drive. I have a job. This hospital is 2.5 hours away. He is in pain. Waiting an extra two days for just an IMAGE. Not even a treatment plan ? This was just unacceptable.

Long story short.  I took the phone from the receptionist and spoke with the Radiology department personally.  Suddenly they could get us in tomorrow. Better! But we weren't done trying. A trip to Marion basically takes an entire day and like I mentioned, I have a job.

We came down to the radiology department ourselves and I told them, tearfully, (lol) we needed this done today. I asked if they could throw an additional appointment on at the end - we were more than willing to wait -  anything at all. Please. They said they would talk to their head cheese and it would come down to getting approval for both staffing and over time etc.,

It didn't look hopeful. Until it was.

Not only did they promise us they would get it done today ... they somehow managed to squeeze him in! We don't even have to wait until 5 pm anymore, he's in there right now.

God is good. The VA is good. One thing I've learned over and over and over while maneuvering these crazy medical waters... You are your own advocate. Make your voice heard. If you don't fight for the health care you need then no one else will.

I'm so grateful that the staff on hand took time to hear our concerns and went above and beyond to help my husband. We are so blessed.

Thank you for your love and support

Update: Once Chad was done his MRI, they sent us down to the Emergency Room to get the results. This obviously wasn't good. It turns out Chad actually did break his leg. A Tibial Plateau Fracture, to be exact.

The ER put in a request for a consult, locally, for an orthopedic surgeon. They will determine the treatment plan once they review the images and determine just how bad it is.  The options would be Surgery (Worse case), A procedure where they insert a screw to ensure the bones align properly or a cast if the screw is not required. It looks like he will be on crutches, unable to bare weight on his leg for a minimum of 6-8 weeks (ONCE they fix him). We now wait to hear from the VA. They will call us and ask us what city we want to see the surgeon in. They will they contact the closest group and set up the appointment. God willing, all of this happens very quickly.

This is hard. It's hard for Chad and it's hard for me. There's just always something to deal with. Nothing is ever easy. So during the moments when I am feeling super stressed and emotionally distraught - it is THOSE moments I have to remind myself just how blessed we are and try my best to remain grateful and thankful for all the good in my life. Honestly, my biggest fear is the financial. I have no idea how this will work with Chad being off again for a few months. Once that question mark is answered, I'll try to wrap my head around everything else.

Thank you - again. For your love and support.