Friday, January 11, 2008

Air and Sleep are Wonderful Things

Yesterday was a good day as far as Kelly was concerned. He'd been looking forward to it all week.

Of course, it didn't start off so well. He only got a couple hours sleep, and was up by 1 am. The stints in his nose had rubbed a raw spot on one side and of course he still couldn't breathe through his nose. And his prescription pain medicine had started giving him some unpleasant side effects - like making him very jittery. So he couldn't take that anymore. Needless to say he'd been only getting 2-3 hours of sleep a night for the past three nights.

So he couldn't wait to go see the ENT yesterday to get the stints out of his nose. His appointment wasn't until 4pm, and it was nearly 5 before we were called back to his room. We had dropped off the girls at some friends' house, because they had told me that he would probably need a driver. It turned out he did, just because he was so tired he could have been arrested for driving impaired.

The doctor finally comes in, and sprays some deadener into his nose. He then snips the stitch that had held the stints in place to the inside of his nose. Then the tweezers come out and began to pull the stints out.

Now I have to admit to being quite surprised. I thought the stints were like two very short tubes, like small straws, lying sideways in his nose to hold his nostrils open and the skin over the cartilage graft in place. Boy was I wrong. The doctor grabbed hold of something with the tweezers and began to pull. And I thought he would never stop! My only thought was that it looked like something out of a horror movie. Alien comes to mind. What was actually in his nose was hard plastic, flat, about 3/4 inch wide, and about 5 inches long, although it certainly looked longer as it emerged from his nostril. It was really more blade shaped than anything, I wish we had kept one, so I could have taken a picture. It was quite impressive. Then he proceeds to pull out another one the same size from the other nostril. I really do not know how they weren't bumping his eyes, or better yet, his brain stem. I could not believe anything that long could fit in anyone nose!

But the instant they were out, Kelly could tell a HUGE difference. He could breathe! Seems that some of the congestion he had was not all swelling as we thought, but was due at least in part to the stints. Not only were they not rubbing the inside of his nose anymore, but he could breathe!

And he can sleep now! He slept for over eight hours straight last night! He is like a new person this morning. Of course, he had more sleep last night than in the three proceeding nights combined. He still has to go back in about two weeks to get more stints removed.

What? Kelly and I neither one realized that the doctor had put stints in the sinus cavities as well. And those have to come out next. I asked the doctor, "Do I even want to know how you get those out?" He replied, "Oh, we have our ways." Sounds like a sequel to the horror movie to me. But at least these aren't blocking airways. So he should really feel open after that. But he was so glad to get the stints out yesterday, I think he would have done a happy dance if he hadn't been so beat. We headed to our friends house who had already fed our girls, and let us eat with them as well - thank you! - which was so nice, as it allowed us to go home and head to bed after the girls' baths.

So we have a new man in our house today! He still needs a few more good nights of sleep but things are definitely looking up after a rough week.

1 comment:

Lora said...

Oh, I am so glad things are getting better!