Wednesday, June 21, 2006

After Tuesday's Treatment

I am posting today to let everyone know how Tuesday night's treatment went. The technician brought out the 17-gauge needles, and was ready to stick me. I had prepared my arm with the Emla cream, and it had a small numb area. The technician put in the first needle, the venous, and it did not pulse. This is a problem, as the blood needs to flow in order to have dialysis. So, she poked around for a little while, and finally pulled that needle out.

She decided to give the arterial needle a try next. She stuck it in, and some black goo oozed into the needle. This isn't good, she said, it's already clotted. So, we pulled that needle out and decided to start again. By this time, the first spot had stopped bleeding. The technician decided to run both needles in an "up" direction, since there didn't seem to be enough room to go down. I'm not exactly sure why there would be room to go one way and not another, but I guess that's what makes me a patient and not a dialysis technician.

So, the tech stuck in the first needle facing up instead of down. This is alright, but does not give the best treatment. She had to quickly flush the line with saline, because my blood wanted to clot right away. It was very thick Tuesday night, and I am not sure what caused that. I wonder if it had to do with all the bruising that has recently gone down in that area.

She ended up finding a spot to put in the second needle, also facing up. She had to quickly dilute that needle with saline as well, since my blood was still attempting to clot. She got some Heparin into my line, and then hooked me up to the machine. She ran the machine at 230 ml/min for most of the night with no problems. My only real complaint was that my arm still does not quite bend all the way out, so it wasn't exactly comfortable to sit in the chair with my arm at a funny angle.

So, thank you all for your prayers. Keep praying that they will be able to stick me correctly and that my blood won't try to clot the second that I am hooked up. I'd also enjoy having the machine slowly run a little faster, so that my blood gets a more thorough cleaning. Thanks for checking in on me. E-mail or comment if you have any questions!

Special thanks to Connie Parr for letting me know that she was praying yesterday!
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