March 1, 2018
Tuesday Dottie's nurse going off shift at the end of the night thought her right leg might be a bit swollen. This is the leg with her PICC line and so it is very important to be aware of any change like this. In the morning an ultrasound was done and two deep vein thrombosis' (blood clots) were discovered. Apparently, this is something that can happen with a PICC line. Two things need to happen upon receiving the information about the blood clots. The first is that the clots must be treated so they don't worsen and hopefully begin to dissipate. Second, the PICC line needs to be removed.
Speaking on the first issue, Dottie is now on a medication called Lovenox. This medication might be referred to as a "blood thinner" although that's not truly what it's doing. The medication inhibits the blood from forming further clots and allows the body to begin healing the clots that have already formed. Dottie gets this medication twice a day and unfortunately it is not an IV medication, she has to get a shot each time. The medication has been tested and shown to be effective the first three months taken. Dottie will continue to receive two shots a day for the next three months. Thankfully this will not keep us from going home if she reaches that point! It just means we will have to continue the shots on our own.
Considering the second issue, her PICC line. The PICC team came by Tuesday evening and looked for a vein with no success. Coming on Wednesday and talking it over they decided not to try for a new PICC line. Dottie is scheduled to receive her Hickman (or Broviac) line on Monday. Though we hoped they might be able to do this sooner once the blood clots were discovered surgery schedules don't allow it. The PICC team decided with just a few days until the new line will be placed it would not be wise to place a new PICC line. The nurses will watch her leg for additional swelling before Monday.
Please pray for the complete dissolving of the two blood clots. The health of the current PICC line, vein and leg. Additionally, the new line will be placed on Monday and does require a surgery. We want Dorothy to be healthy during that surgery, the surgeons and others to have skill and wisdom, and that there would be no troubles of any kind.
We ask for continued and long term prayers for healthy intestines and miraculous growth of the small intestines.
Thank you for your prayers, kind words, and gifts. We are grateful for each of you and we hope you know that even if we haven't said so individually.