Mark's new catheter was placed in his chest this morning. We are thankful that this is behind us. Mark experienced a great deal of pain when the first catheter was placed. The placement of the catheter this morning was not as bad as the initial one, but Mark is pretty sore. As we've mentioned in previous posts, the Cannon catheter is placed in the chest-just below the collar bone. The catheter is tunneled down into the chest and serves as a temporary port for dialysis. Each time Mark is dialyzed, the catheter is used as the dialysis machine pumps his blood out, cleans it, and pumps it back into his body. The catheter is considered as a "temporary port" because it is not meant to stay in a patient's body more than a few months due to the risk of infection...which we know can happen easily!
It was our understanding that the Transplant Team's plan was to place the new catheter, dialyze Mark, and send him home on oral antibiotics. This morning, the cultures back from the lab that had been drawn from days past no longer indicated the presence of any infection. However, this afternoon, the Team received another report from the lab on a culture drawn a few days ago from behind Mark's old catheter (the one that was removed on Monday). This culture showed the presence of bacteria. Thus, we will have to stay here to receive more antibiotics via IV. This was discouraging news as we were ready to go home! Please pray that the infection clears. We are hopeful that the cultures drawn today will not show any infection. If the infection does not go away and the catheter no longer seems like the cause of infection, the Team will have to consider doing something more invasive to identify a new location or cause of the infection.