Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Three Sticks?

Well, it has been a while since I have posted an update, so I figured that today would be as good of a day as any. I am not going to apologize for the long wait this week, as I am sure that my regular readers (the faithful five) are tired of seeing that!

So, I have been having good dialysis treatments for several months now. There are three (or possibly four) technicians that I let stick me. They are the best technicians at the clinic, and normally do not have too much trouble. They will have to move a needle around a little bit after the treatment starts occasionally, if they did not hit it right down the middle. But, all in all, there have not been too many needle problems.

Last night, however, there was a slight mis-hap. One of the trusted technicians was there to stick me for my treatment. He put in the first needle (the arterial line) and it went in with no problems. He then went for the venous line, and it was a little tricky. He thought he had it in, but it was not pulsing. He opened the line to let it fill with blood, and it filled rather quickly (which was normal). He then went to add heparin to the line, which they always do at the beginning of the treatment. Unfortunately, when he drew the blood in to the heparin needle, he also drew in a clot. So, he swapped out to an empty needle and tried to pull more blood, but could not. He ended up having to remove that line, bandage it up, and put the needle in slightly higher. It hurt a little more going in higher, but that was because it is not an area that normally gets stuck. So, he got me with that needle for the venous stick. They got some new heparin, and all was well. There were no major problems with the rest of the treatment.

The only complaint that they have at the clinic is that my blood pressure and heart rate seem to drop during my treatment. I have had it explained to me that the likely cause is my mitral valve prolapse. My heart rate is irregular, and the machine may not always catch the lighter beats. I think this is why is will register my heart rate as 44 one minute and 88 the next. This problem happens every treatment, but the nurse doesn't seem to have it noted in my chart that it is normal for me. Instead, she worries every week and asks if I am taking too much blood pressure medication.

I guess she did not see in the chart where my blood pressure was up over 150 back in November of 2005. Before we got my medication all worked out, I was having actual heart rate problems. Now, however, I think that everything is fixed, and the machine just doesn't like my heart.

Kala has her test at the end of next week, so I will update everyone as soon as I hear anything. They drew my blood at the clinic yesterday for the monthly (and yearly) tests, so I should have lab results for everyone next week.

Thanks for coming by!
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