Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Day Two - Done !!

First things first - we are on our way home. Yeah !!  Spending the night in Quincy, IL, then back to Paducah tomorrow.

Day two started sorta of like day one - except we now have a new treatment routine to do two or three times a day.  It is time consuming using a combination of steroid creams, then a wet wrap to help the creams do their work.  One thing that we learned yesterday is that the skin requires much moisture to heal.

The "items" that we are using to act like a wrap were some things that I picked up at Target last night.  I should point out that it is the end of January, and there are still about seven or eight weeks of winter left until the spring solstace, but do you think that I could find thermal underwear or sweat suits in Minnesota in January ??  Heck no, but I could have bought all of the shorts, tank tops, and swim wear that I could afford - crazy !!  Anyway, I wound up finding some very fine Minnesota Vikings PJ bottoms, and a thermal Minnesota Timberwolf top on the clearance rack.  Did you catch that - on the clearance rack, in January, in Minnesota !!  Some things I just don't understand.

Well, we finished up the wrap treatment, that takes about 1.5 hours, then it was pack up the car.  We only had one appointment this morning, so we were hopeful that we would get to leave after that.  We checked out of our room, with the understanding that we could stay another night if needed.  We loaded up the car, then hopped on the shuttle to the Clinic downtown.

More paperwork, but then in short order, we were called back.  We met with a nurse first today who did a complete H&P review, then the physician came in.  She is a general medicine internist, but works exclusively with the dermatology department.  We spent about a total of two hours with these folks, and here is what we learned:

  • We may still have a Stevens-Johnson Syndrome diagnosis.  We still don't have the results of the pathology of the biopsy samples, but it appears that among other things, the SJS may still be a possibility.  With the presence of the steroids, and the other underlying conditions, it may be a long while before that determination can be made - if ever !!
  • Her thyroid is still a little out of whack, so that will be followed up on
  • Things like blood pressure, blood sugar, and bone density will have to be routinely monitored
Long story short, the physicians at Mayo will be working closely with our doctors at home to be sure that all are working together.  As mentioned yesterday, this will be a long process, perhaps some three months or so to wean off the steroids, and maybe as long as nine months to completely healed.  Also, we will probably be returning to Rochester in about three months for follow up.

We came to Mayo not knowing exactly what to expect, other than armed with the knowledge that this was a world class organization, and we hoped to be able to leave with at least some of the questions answered.  The experience was amazing, truly world class, and not only do we have some answers, we have a confirmed plan of action moving forward.

Probably the one other thing that really stuck out to me was the efficiency at which her care was delivered.  Appointments were made, and kept on time.  When it came time to have some labs drawn, we waited with probably 50 or 75 other folks, and were processed in about five minutes.  Everyone was validating all appointments to be sure that we were kept on task and on track.  We never felt like we were rushed anywhere.  The staff was very knowledgeable, and courteous, and even though this is a huge physical complex, we never lacked for directions on how to get somewhere.

As Rondia progresses with her recovery, I will continue to periodically update this blog, so be watching for the notifications.  Again, we are grateful for all the thoughts, concerns, and prayers.  Please allow them to continue.  We are not out of the woods yet, but we are beginning to see the light.

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