Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Freedom! And summer finally begins!

CJ had an appointment with his ID doctor today, and we were VERY hopeful that the PICC line would be removed.  The lab work showed everything within normal ranges!  And since the incisions were closed and not draining, we had every reason to have that hope.  CJ was so confident, he actually wore his swim suit to the doctor's office, so I could drop him off at the pool on the way home!  Remember, he hasn't been able to swim yet this summer.  And he usually practically lives at the pool during the summer.

The doctor came in and talked to us.  He asked if there had been any fever or pain.  We were pleased to be able to answer no.  He then asked both of us if we were comfortable with removing the PICC.  We both said yes.  Then the doctor said those words we were longing to hear:  he was going to pull the PICC!

CJ had been really nervous that the process of pulling the PICC.  He was worried it would hurt.  That was the only apprehension he was feeling when the nurse came in to pull the line. 

When the nurse came in, it took a few minutes for her to get set up and remove the tape & stuff securing the line into the arm.  When that was done, she told CJ to take a deep breath.  He looked away and took the breath.  What he didn't know, was that while he was breathing in, the nurse was pulling the line, wrapping it around her hand like yarn.  As CJ let out his breath, the nurse said, "OK.  That's it."  CJ's eyes got wide, and he was completely surprised that it was already done!  I really wish I had a picture of his face; it was priceless.  Obviously, it didn't hurt; it was a quick and painless procedure. 

Here's a picture of the PICC line:

While CJ held a cotton ball on the hole where the line was, the nurse measured the length of the PICC line.  It's important that the length of the line that was pulled out equals the length of the line that was inserted; obviously, no one wants any pieces of the line left in the body.  I'm not sure what would happen if the measurement didn't match; thankfully, ours was spot-on.

The doctor prescribed CJ an oral antibiotic that he'll take for another 2 months.  It's a hefty dose:  1000mg cephalexin 3 times a day.  Unfortunately, we are still on a 6:00AM, 2:00PM, 10:00PM medication schedule, but at least it's just quickly swallowing a couple of pills instead of a 30-minute hook-up.

CJ was so excited about the PICC line being out!  Then came the words that completely deflated him.  The doctor said he didn't want CJ swimming for another couple of days while to make sure the site for the line was healed.

As we left the doctor's office, CJ's attitude was on a downhill slide.  He wanted me to just drop him off at the pool anyway; he'd waited to swim long enough.  I was afraid we were about to have a long argument, when a thunderstorm rolled in to the area.  Thankfully, this took care of the problem; the storm closed the pool for the rest of the day. 

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