Today has been difficult for Mark. He started feeling pretty bad late last night and early this morning. Mark went to dialysis around 7:30 this morning. While he was receiving dialysis, he started having rigors and became very nauseous. It was then that the Team decided that the catheter used for dialysis had to be removed. Using the catheter for dialysis seemed to exacerbate Mark's symptoms. I guess this served as proof that the infection had contaminated the catheter. So, the catheter was removed late this afternoon. We were very nervous about the removal of the catheter. However, after its removal, Mark said it wasn't as bad as he had anticipated. The plan now is to wait and see how Mark's blood work looks after having the catheter removed and receiving the IV antibiotics. Hopefully, Mark's white blood cell count will continue to drop. This would mean that we could go home with an antibiotic to help fight the infection. As we mentioned in an earlier post, there is some concern about the presence of an abscess around the hernia repair site. If Mark's blood work does not show improvement, the Team will have to consider something more invasive (i.e. sampling the fluid around the hernia repair site or surgery to reopen the hernia repair site to remove any abscess).
Mark will have another catheter placed in his chest on Wednesday. When Mark had the catheter placed in June, it was painful and nerve wracking. The catheter is "tunneled" down next to patient's heart. The patient is given some type of sedative, but is not under general anesthesia. Mark is not looking forward to this. Please pray for him-especially on Wednesday.
Despite not knowing what lies ahead, Mark and I are trying to stay positive. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, Mark is the strongest and bravest man I know. He has been through a great deal. I admire his strength. We spent some time this evening reading Paul's letter to the Thessalonian church...it gave us comfort to see how other believers have dealt with affliction and suffering. We studied the definition of endure...the Greek word translated for endure is anecho which means "to patiently wait." We know that God gives inner strength to the believer to enable him to be steadfast, to patiently wait in the midst of difficult circumstances. We are just praying for that inner strength!!!