Trust your patient to fight in her own way

May 22, 2012 Tuesday

Day 11

Vitals:  taken at 8:00 am
O2 SAT – 91
Heart Rate: 110
Temperature: 37.3
Blood Pressure: 140/80 
Respiratory Rate: 24

“Melit almost died today but her spirit is strong even if the body is weak.”

Melit with sister Virgie and pamangkin Maymay

Our attitude: 

We know Melit more than anybody else; more than these doctors and nurses. Since our patient cannot speak, we have to speak in her behalf. Those knowledge we have of her were key ingredients of her healing process. One thing we remind doctors is that Melit is a fighter – her spirit is strongest when she is attacked or challenged.

Our Observation:

Comatose patients may look weak, but that is only their bodies. Their spirit is not in comatose, and sometimes, when the flesh is weak, the spirit is willing.

Today, Melit almost died. Her endo-tracheal tube that receives oxygen was  dislodged for thirty minutes. The nurses were frantic. Her 02 Sat was at 35, way too low. We were looking for signs of hypoxemia such as cyanosis but there was none. Melit was fighting, so opened her mouth and raised her head to get oxygen on her own.

Our Action:

We demanded for an immediate attention by a competent doctor as the nurses had difficulty.

Our Doctors said

God is good, just as this emergency was happening, Dr. Yacapin came for her rounds. She ordered a re-intubation right away after the nurses tried to adjust the tube. At that point, Melit’s oxygen saturation was at 70, and 89 is already an alarming level.  For thirty minutes, she stayed at 70.

Dr. Miranda, a handsome young doctor came to do the intubation and what he told us was short of amazing. He found out that the tube indeed was not in place and that Melit actually was breathing on her own for more than thirty minutes. She fought, and she survived the ordeal.

Then Dr. Casino said that Melit’s Xray and CBC revealed that there is pneumonia and it is progressing. We knew for a fact that pneumonia is one of the leading causes of death among post-surgery cases, especially among comatose patients.

But then again, we knew Melit’s spirit can defeat any germs attacking her lungs. That, and the help of a very expensive cocktails of antibiotic: Ranitidine, Vancomysin and Meropenim.

Both Dr. Yacapin and Dr. Casino commented about her bloated belly. At 2:30PM her NGT was on “open to drain” – a process that eliminates content of her stomach via the tube, and for the first five hours, black fluids came out filling the bottles. We knew it was bad.

God’s Blessings: 

Rey, Congressman Peter Unabia’s staff working in the hospital, was able to procure Vancomysin for one day.


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