The pain pump was set up yesterday. It wasn’t a good day at all. Mathew realized it meant another step towards the end of his life and became upset. That along with the Decadron made for some trying times. I had to speak to him about his language when the nurses were here. He dissolved into tears saying he was so scared and I told him that was ok but the language was not.
The needle was inserted in the backside of Mathew’s left arm, where it shouldn’t be bumped and used as much as his predominant arm/hand, the right one. John had picked up the cassette with the morphine so the nurses inserted it into the little, portable iv machine. It is a small, heavy machine that is in a fanny pack. Mathew won’t wear it so John or I handle it when Mathew moves around.
The initial dose is halved as medicine absorbs through the interstitial area under the skin differently than by oral pills. It was not nearly enough and Mathew spent another sleepless night in agony. We were given the 24 hour number to call but didn’t. I slept through the night as John took over Mathew’s room.
I called the doctor and Extramural first thing when I got up. The nurse stopped in around 15 minutes later and shortly thereafter talked to the doctor and changed the dose on the machine. The nurse has a key to access the machine and without it there is no overriding the system. So yes, there are security precautions. Tracy first collected the data from the 19 hours Mathew was hooked up, confirmed the needle was still in his skin and the machine was working fine. Then she reported that to the doctor and the change was made.
The continuous morphine went from 3.75 to 5.5 mg. The breakthrough was raised from 7 to 10 mg/dose. The relief came quickly. While he is not completely pain free it is so much better than last night! He is on another 36 hour stretch here and will probably fall asleep early this evening.
Mathew’s decline in mobility is enough that we hurried the hospital bed along. I didn’t know that the OT was arranging for a bed to be bought for Mathew; hence the long waiting period. We called her today and spoke about a loan as that is all that is needed. The bed will be delivered tomorrow. It will be so much easier for Mathew to get in and out of bed and sit up. It is painful to watch him move about right now.
John will rearrange Mathew’s room and move one of our bigger TV’s in there so it can be watched from bed. He is wonderful about doing that for Mathew. He used to bring a small tv and one or two gaming systems to the hospital for Mathew, where he set them up for use. It helped those inpatient stays go by much better.
This is one of the transitions that is difficult for us. It brings us closer to the end and is a clear reminder that the cancer progressed enough to require these changes. Mathew so wants to stay at home and I am hoping we can carry out his wish.
ps. Service Canada called me today and said the issues with my file should be cleared up and I should see some money by Friday. My fingers are crossed!