This morning, Julie was dying to get out on a walk. Luckily her mother came up. I spent some time with the boys and went to church. They did a chest xray to see if there was very much fluid in the bottom of the plural cavity on her posterior (back) side. This is where the ends of the tubes are. They enter in on each side of her rib cage just below the breast line and go between the diaphragm and lungs to the back where they drain the most fluid. Julie's xray came back and they decided to pull both chest tubes! This is great news. It is one step closer to home, where she can recover well and be away from all those germs. I was talking to a doctor today at church and he said that is why the protocol is to get her discharged as soon as is safe for her. She is much more likely to get sick in the hospital than in her own home. They also pulled the Foley catheter in her bladder. She is a free woman...sort of. No more "jump ropes" to carry around when she is walking. All she has is her 24 hr infusion of meropenem in her port. We moved it from her central line in her neck to her permanent pic line in her arm called a port. She had me go up last night and access her port since she doesn't trust anyone to do it. I have gotten pretty good at it I must say, but it's the only one I do, and I know her arm by now. It is under the skin so I have to take a needle that has a 90 degree angle to it and hold the port while I insert the needle. Most ports are in the chest just below the collar bone so they don't move all that much when you access them. Hers however is just below her bicep in her arm so it moves around easily. You can only hold it a little bit, so you have to be firm as you insert it. Easier to show you than tell you, so come by sometime and she would love to be stuck just for demonstration purposes.
Julie took the gallon challenge last night to get her bowels moving. It only took 32 oz for her. She's a lightweight. She is a lot more comfortable now and with those chest tubes out I am looking forward to seeing how she is feeling.