Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Mike's hospital stay

We have had quite the couple of months and we owe a lot of it to this guy. Mike decided to quit smoking cigarettes at the beginning of August and since that time had slowly been declining in health. Mike was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis when he was 20 years old. He has been on some consistant medication since that time, with no major problems, until this year. In January Mike decided to try and quit smoking at that time and ended up in the ER and so he picked up the habit again. When he quit in August he was determined to let go of the habit, but his body had other plans. Mike started having bleeding issues since he had quit and it got progressively worse. His doctor tried to stop his bleeding with high doses of prednisone and his body wasn't responding. His doctor worked him up for several different illness that could be causing the bleeding, but they all came back negative. Mike ended up getting a call from his doctor on Monday September 8 informing him that he would need to do a colonoscopy on Thursday September 11 to find out why Mike was bleeding. I quickly requested the time off work so that I could be there with him. When we got to the hospital Mike was checked in and taken back. They got his IV started and pretty soon they were wheeling him away. I just sat in the room and waited, I figured that since I was just waiting I would ask for a doctor's note and take it up to my manager. It wasn't much longer after I returned Mike's doctor came out screaming orders. He wanted to the nurse to start the "500 step admission process" and then he walked around the corner and said, "I'm admitting a 30 year old male Michael K Hodson for severe ulcerative colitis." I have a friend who works in the GI lab and she did give me a heads up the night before that this could be the case, but I didn't really think much of it until I heard the doctor. I completely lost all the composure I had. They hadn't wheeled Mike back to the room so I quickly ran out and asked the nurse if I could go tell my manager so she could start finding coverage for me for the next day. The nurse could see how upset I was and offered to comfort me, but I was so upset I just wanted to walk away. I went and told my manager and shortly after I got back down stairs, Mike returned to his room. He clearly had no idea what was going on. He asked me what was wrong and all I could say was that he was going to have to stay at the hospital. He told me not to worry that we would just be there until he passed some gas and then we could go. I explained to him that wasn't the case and his doctor came in and let him know then news. His doctor said Mike was hemorrhaging on his left side, which later to find out, he just uses that word for any type of bleeding. Mike asked me to call his work and let them know, which I did. I also had texted his mom and asked her to please come to the hospital. I called my mom and let her know what was going on and she was so quick to step up and help out with my girls. Mike was taken to his hospital room where he would be staying for the next 4 days. He was put on GI rest so he couldn't have anything to eat or drink and they also were doing aggressive medication through his IV. The poor guy was so hungry because of the prep for the colonscopy he hadn't had anything to eat since Tuesday night. We found out that Mike was going to have to be on a new medication called Humira, It is an injection that he gets every other week and it costs about $2500 for each injection. He had to have some blood tests done before they could start this medication and we had to wait for the insurance to give the ok that they would pay for the medication. The ok from the insurance came late friday and he was given his first injection on Saturday. We did ask his doctor about the effects of smoking with ulcerative colitis. His doctor said of course he couldn't encourage Mike to smoke, but that he has seen smoking help patients with ulcerative colitis because it decreases their oxygen and blood flow causing them not to have flare ups. He did have Mike on nicotine patches in the hospital to see if it would help anything. I was coming home every night to take care of the girls. I really didn't want them to feel any of the affects from their dad being gone. We would facetime Mike every night before bed and the girls were able to see that their dad was going to be ok. Mike finally got to come home on Sunday September 14. We were so glad to have him home, but he still wasn't himself. It has taken a few weeks for Mike to get back his energy, which is understandable. We are so glad that he is still here with us and seems to be improving a little more each day.