Thursday, April 20, 2006
[Left: Photo of Mike sleeping with Hobbes this afternoon. Right: Photo of a fluid collection post-craniotomy - not Mike's... read on]
Mike was more himself today. He was upbeat, showed a sense of humor and was more alert. His memory does not appear to store info for longer than 1 minute. There is still no integration of info into longterm memory.
This morning, Dr. Georgia was there (love her). She recommended that I request a family sit-down meeting with Mike’s doctors to assess where we are and where we’re heading. I’m working on arranging it.
In the meantime, couple of new pieces of information. First, the tumor has formed a cyst on the top of it that is pressing up into the brain. Second, there is a collection of fluid under the right front bone plate that they fear may be infected. [See photo on the right of a similar situation post-craniotomy. Not Mike’s though. The inverted bulge on the right is a pool of fluid under the skull] It’s common to have this collection after a craniotomy, but it usually reabsorbs. From what I can gather, Mike’s has not reabsorbed. Infectious Diseases docs came today and are putting Mike on hardcore antibiotics through his IV. They’re also doing a spinal tap to test for infection (since spinal fluid and brain fluid are in communication with each other it would likely show up there.) An infection would explain Mike’s ongoing spiking fevers (104, 102, 103 etc). Needless to say, radiation is postponed because radiation in the face of infection can be catastrophic.
It’s interesting that there is this frontal lobe issue now. 2 days ago when Mike was really haywire, one of the nurses described him as acting “frontal.” “We usually see these kinds of behaviors in patients with trauma to the frontal lobes,” she said. These behaviors include acting impulsively and being extremely fascinating with the sense of touch – pulling at wires, touching this blankets, reaching for things, ripping paper apart (all of which he’s been doing). Today, even while he was happier and more sort of Mike-like, he was oddly tactile, rubbing his stuffed animal like a toddler does a blanket, and pulling at his blankets repeatedly.
Today we had a lot of nice visits with Crazy Susan Murphy, Josh (who Mike correctly referred to as “Jorsh), Diane J. (tomtom’s mom), and Kelly. When Diane left for the cafeteria to get Mike some pie, about 30 seconds later I asked, “Who was the woman who was just here?” He replied, “Mary Roney.” And no, I am not kidding. Dude, he’s hooked on Roney! I then told him it was a dear friend’s mother. He thought a second.
“Ma Roney. Steve Roney’s mom.”
Roney, is there something I need to know about you and my husband?