Floof Allergies? I think not
Saturday was a bit of a roller coaster for us emotionally. Felicia, Rima's friend from Colorado had coordinated with her friend that lives here who owns two huskies to come by and visit Rima on Saturday morning. I needed to get there before their arrival to meet them in the lobby and to give the nurses the cookies I baked the day before. It had snowed Friday and a little overnight. Good thing I had picked up some snow clearing equipment a couple days beforehand. I have not had to clear a car of snow or ice in quite some time. Living in Brooklyn this was not an issue and before then I live in California. By the time I had cleared the car and gotten in it, my fingers were numb. I would have to subject myself to ugly functional gloves moving forward. Ones that would not permit frost bite.
I got to the hospital and walked into Rima’s room exactly on time. Fifteen minutes before the dogs would arrive. I had told Rima the day before to look half way decent by eleven, for a surprise. After I got a little settled she guessed that puppies or dogs were coming. So I told her the truth. Two huskies were on their way. She was super super excited. Her smile went from ear to ear. Right before eleven I got a text that Casandra, the owner was down stairs. I met up with her in the lobby and help her walk the dogs up to the 7th floor. Everyone we passed by was in awe of the dogs. Everyone wanted to pet them and say hi. This hardly even happens to cat owners, I can promise you that.
I pushed the door open to Rima’s room and Bella and Gir trotted inside. “dawwwww” was Rima’s immediate reaction. Cassandra stayed for about 45 minutes and let Rima and I pet and hug her dogs with out restrictions. They were both very well behaved and very sweet. I want a dog now, more than ever. So does Rima, this is what huskies do to us. They are our kryptonite.
After our visitors left Rima and I caught up. She had a fever yesterday and she felt like she was getting another one at that moment. A couple doctors came in and did the normal chat with her. One of the doctors suggested a new type of Nebulizer medication for her. She had tried it the day before and he said she should do it again. Polymyxin B, he wrote it down on her white board for us. Then they wrapped up and said they would be around again tomorrow and bid us a good day.
I was very hungry at this point so I proceeded to get my salad out of the fridge. It had started to smell the other day. I like to cook with garlic and onions, what can I say I like flavor in my food. Tomorrow I would bring some baking soda to absorb the smell. Respiratory came in and dropped off Rima’s therapies. Rima began doing her nebs and I started working away at my salad and my hunger. About six bites into my lunch, Rima stopped her neb and put it on the table “this neb is not sitting well with me”. I looked over at her and her face was scrunched with concern and pain. Her face was a little flushed. She pressed her nurse call button and asked for them to grab her nurse because it was urgent. She then asked me to turn up her oxygen. Oh no, this is not good. I turned it up to 6 liters.
Her face was growing redder and I could tell she was having a super hard time breathing. I asked if she was going to throw up and shook her head no. I asked if I should go get help she shook her head yes. This is out of character for her so I ran out into the hallway barefoot and down the hall to the nurses station. There were two physicians at the pod. They looked up at me before I said anything, and started to move my way. I must have looked panicked. I told them that my sister in room 229 was having a super hard time breathing and that she needed help quick. I turned back to the room running, they followed in suit.
Upon entering back into the room Rima I could see had gotten worse. She was super red now and panicked. The two nurses ran in to assess the situation. Rima said “help”. This was like a dagger to my heart. Rima does not say those words unless it’s serious. A couple more people came running into the room. One nurse put her O2 up high I think to like 10 and put a mask on because it delivers oxygen much faster. The other nurse called rapid response. Rima somehow got out of her closing airways that she was going to pass out or thought she would because her vision was going blurry and was having tunnel vision. I moved to the side of the room as a few more people ran in. Respiratory rushed in asking questions. “What happened what did you take?” I showed them the syringe. “I’m really hot, I’m going to pass out” Rima exhaled to the whole room. More commotion erupted from her statement. They pushed her Oxygen up higher, to 12 I believe. The pulmonologist came in the room and started to asses and ask questions.
They gave her a duo neb to open up her air way passages and get more air to her lungs and to flush out the neb that she had taken before. After about ten minutes from me running into the hall and getting help she was finally looking a little better and said she was not going to pass out but was still having trouble breathing. They gave her IV Benadryl, to help calm down the allergic reaction and any side effects as well as IV Prednisone, also called Solumedrol. She got sleepy and tried to rest. I went back to my arm chair and kept my eyes on her for a while. Finally about two hours after the incident she was back to feeling like she was before. Phew, that was rough, never again please…never again!
Allergic reactions can happen like this to people, of course they happen to Rima. She is allergic or has bad side effects to about 85% of the CF drugs out there when it comes to IV's or her bugs are resistant to them. This is what makes Rima's case so specialized. Just when a doctor thinks they have figured her out, boom now she can't have that drug, go fish! Yeah, we seriously need a Doctor House or something to help out her medical team. That night Rima was back to normal. We even went on a evening walk around the hospital and spooky dimly lit hallways.
The next couple days were pretty uneventful. I went and hung out with Rima everyday and we watch shows or movies or were silly and giggled a lot. No more allergic reactions...so far... For Thanksgiving we aren't doing anything crazy or really exciting. I'll be picking up some pre-made meals at whole foods on Wednesday and spending two night at the hospital with Rima. I'm brining an air mattress...or a foam topper. I refuse to be on the roads Wednesday night or Thursday night. Drunk driving will be at an all time high. Maybe we will get a call for new lungs?!? Send good vibes to us over your turkey dinners!