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Saturday, 18 February 2012

One good thing about being in hospital

What could that possibly be, I hear you ask?  I read about 7 books while I was in there and managed to clear some of my backlog.  Most were traditional books, but I did have my Kindle smuggled in.  The only problem with that was that I only had one book that I hadn't read on it, and I've never tried to down load one just using the basic Kindle; I've always done it via my PC in the first instance.

I have now rectified that by downloading several books, and I will have to make sure that I always have something on the go so that I have something on it to read should I ever be incarcerated again.  I do still love the whole look and feel of a real book and somehow there is nothing like opening a book for the first time.

I joined recently with the target of reading 24 books this year, and I am almost half way there already, thanks to Poole General Hospital.  I chose some books to add to a 'to read' list and I managed to find one of them in the hospital charity second-hand book shop, which I came across when I was having a wander around one day.  Haven't had time to start it yet as I am reading some of the Christopher Redmayne Mystery series by the author Edward Marston.  They are set at the Restoration of Charles II and feature Christopher Redmayne, an aspiring architect with a Cavalier background, who ends up working with a Roundhead puritan parish constable, Jonathan Bale to solve crimes.  A regular character is Christopher's brother Henry Redmayne, a rake and dandy who nontheless proves to be of use through his connections at court and his sinecure in the Navy Office.  They are easy to read and have a more straight forward plot than some authors such as Philippa Gregory and her Thomas Chaloner series, but this makes them good light hospital reading that don't tax the little grey cells too much.  Sometimes you just don't need a book that is too complex.

I have to admit that I haven't read this much in years, but it has been interesting to have your world reduced to getting up, taking meds, eating hospital food and reading.  It also gave me time to use meditation a bit more, especially during the periods when I was getting upset about being there, or the noise levels, or the cannular problems.  It was a really useful thing to be able to get some control back when I felt like screaming.  Good thing I had my MP3 player with me to help me focus, or listen to guided meditations.

Fourteen days in limbo

So I had been to my GP about a hot red area along my left hip replacement scar that had appeared after a hot shower and then got worse during the day, and been put on antibiotics.  Went back again two days later because it was getting worse and I was back using crutches to help me walk.  So on the second visit I ended up being admitted to hospital, for what I thought was one or two nights.  Fourteen days later I was finally discharged, though I have to go back for an outpatient appointment on Monday morning to check out how I am doing now that I have been moved to tablet antibiotics.  In hospital I was on i.v. antibiotics, at one time 24 hours a day as it seems that I have a staph infection, though trying to get information from the doctors is not an easy thing.  Why are they like that?  Why do they have to treat you like you are a little child who shouldn't be told because they won't understand; though in this day and age maybe they are more concerned by people wanting to sue over the slightest thing.  Personally I want information, but I could never really understand who was actually in charge of my case.  Maybe I will get more information on Monday.  ???

Finally after I threw a bit of a wobbly they put in a PICC line (Peripherally Inserted Central Catheter) to administer the infusions after five cannulars failed because my veins are so bad.  They just didn't seem to get the concept that when you have cancer the likelihood is that your veins are shot and although I kept trying to tell them that they wouldn't last they just didn't seem to get it.  I am used to them having to dig for veins and more than once when they try to put one in, but when they start to take blood samples from your feet, and they can't think where they are going to put the next one...why do you have to push to have a line put in?  I am just hoping that it can be left in for further treatments, but this is something else they just don't seem to understand / want to discuss.  Then, of course, you come up against who is, or is not, allowed to care for the damned thing.  Evidently you need to have some sort of a certificate to be allowed to clean it and flush it so it may end up being more trouble than it is worth.  Evidently my cancer treatment hospital have to be prepared to take it on, and my GP practice as it needs to be flushed once a week.  It is enough to make you weep.  I am trying to protect my poor veins and the medical profession just doesn't seem to be interested - just send in the next clown to have a dig for a vein, patient won't mind.

Since I got home I have been sleeping an enormous amount.  Not sure if this is because of the new tablets, or whether my body is trying to catch up with all the sleep that you inevitably miss on a hospital ward.  Just wish I had one of those amazing motorised beds as you can get soooo comfortable with minimum effort.

Will just have to see what they have to say on Monday.