Captain Jason

The latest news on the recover of Jason after his injury in Iraq by an IED.


Snail Mail:

Cpt. Jason Scott
WRAMC Building 20
Mologne House Hotel #316
6900 Georgia Ave. NW
Washington DC 20307

Phone: 202 577 0092

Monday, February 27, 2006

Nothing is done, till the paperwork is done...I think Jason set a record!

And Boy did Jason do pre-op paperwork on another cold, blue sky winter day here at WR. Jason decided to skip breakfast; bad, bad move. We started at the Orthopedics--tomorrow's hip surgery. Jason's appointment was for 8 AM. His liaison from 3rd ID was also waiting. Sgt Brown told us that he had been told he must be present at 7 AM. A sign clearly marked on the wall said "Appointments begin at 7:45." I thought this is not going to be good. Finally Sgt. Brown was called after 8:30 AM and then Jason.

Jason got into the MD by 9 AM and first went over his medical history with an intern; Dr. Frisch came in talked about the surgery. His response to my question, "How do you remove the bone?" "If it is free floating, we part open the muscle and "lift it out." "If it is connected to an existing bone...", and here Dr. F got a little flustered and blushed. At this point, he was wishing I hadn't asked the question and, of course, now so was I. Since I had asked, he felt obliged to answer, "Well, if necessary we use a 'hammer and a chisel' It is sorta like carpentry." This is a direct quote. I didn't ask him to explain further, I figure you all would get the picture... I asked him "Do you stitch muscle?" He answered "No muscle doesn't stitch well." The surgeons lay the opened muscle side by side and scar tissue forms to "reconnect it" was what I got out of his answer.

Dr. Frisch was hopeful that Jason would be up and about in a couple of days, but could not predict timing. He said that most people sleep on their backs and that is helpful after this surgery; it helps keep hematomas from forming in the empty spaces created when Dr. F removes the bone. Jason is telling every one to expect key chain fobs made from his bone. (When he says this, I think "Jason is going to give his friends of piece of his___" That is what popped into my head. I have held my tongue, you can read it or delete it.)

A follow-up procedure that is routinely done is radiation of the sight to keep the HO from reoccuring. Best results are obtained by doing it within 72 hours. Dr. F wanted us to talk to radiation oncology as they were the group at WR to do this treatment. We hadn't planned on it but this was added to our list of "must see."

Next we walked to a different hall in the department and were handed off to the case manager for Dr. Farber who will do the surgery on Jason's left arm HO. The RN took Jason's history to correct his file, entered the data and left the computer on. She left the room and immediately Jason got on her computer and began to answer emails...When the RN returned, somewhat shocked at Cpt Jason's boldness, but recovering quickly said,"Well, all he got to read was his own file!" Jason wouldn't read his own medical file as he tells me about not reading the blog, "I am living it." (A valid point.)

Dr. Farber said, "I am not even thinking about doing this surgery until you are well healed from your hip surgery." As Jason and I both have said and Dr. Farber also stated, "Jason will need his left arm to help himself up after the HO surgery for sure." Dr. Farber also said, "Jason may need a cane for awhile." When he does take out the bone, Dr. Farber said that Jason's ability to twist the wrist would not be 100%. He said the plates are not interfering with the twist of the wrist. Jason will not get a cast as Dr. F does not want to restrict wrist action in any way. The wrist will probably hurt more, but using it will keep the bone from not bridging again. The area will also be radiated as the hip will be.

Dr. Farber also said that he would not take out the two plates during the surgery as Jason has no complaints from their being in place. He might consider removal in a year or more. If the plates are not bothering Jason, Dr. F preferred to leave them in place as any surgery carries risks of infection, etc. I think we are looking at late March or early April for the left arm surgery as Jason is scheduled to have eye surgery on March 16. Of course, all procedures are reschedulable.

After Dr. Farber we were on to blood work and a meeting with the anesthetist we thought. We filled out another medical history. We waited, Jason went for his blood work. He returned. We waited and waited and it was getting through lunch time. I offered to buy lunch, "No its got to be soon." We waited. I finally had it; I told Jason I had to stretch my legs and went out to the desk. I told the clerk that Jason was OIF, we had been waiting 2 hours etc, etc. (We had been told by staff on the floor during Jason's hospital stay that OIF patients are not to wait.) Her only reply to me, "The procedure for pre-op can take 3 hours." As patient advocate, I am "Grring." When I got back to the waiting room a case manager was taking Jason to her office. (I thought "woo," the phone works fast.)

Now get this, we waited for the "anesthetist person" all this time to have the RN case manager tell us, "He doesn't want to meet with you, he will talk to you before surgery tomorrow!" She knew nothing about Jason being scheduled for surgery tomorrow!! She was genuinely surpised when Jason told her. Of course, she had to take Jason's medical history again! Talk about a system being incompetentl and poorly managed! I was really upset on behalf of Jason's comfort (and all other patients subjected to such mismangament.)

It is after 1 PM, it is time to go to radiology. I say "Jason, let us get something to eat." We stop at the Subway on the first floor, same level as radiology, get our sandwiches; Jason is still trying for a repeat of the "whopper meatball" one. We head off through the maze of halls until we get to radiology oncology, fill out another medical history this one focusing on cancer incidence in his family and eat lunch using the chairs in the waiting room as tables. The tech comes out, says "You can keep eating" and interviews us because Jason insists he is not worried about privacy. "I have had more people look at my butt... Jason goes on to list: I have been in the Washington Post, on CBS, in a lecture on humor as a coping skill by the head of psychiatry... Privacy is not an issue." We do go into a private room consent signing.

I don't know if Jason is exhausted but I sure am: a SIX HOUR marathon of paper re-creating the same information and waiting and frustration and wandering the halls of WR. Not the most restful way of relaxing before major surgery and needing to get up at 4:30 AM. We finally return to Mologne about 2:30. Jason says, "I am going to rest." Next I have to drive to Fairfax to return Martha's car and make the return by train. Jason is to have dinner with Dennis this evening as this is "My last real meal before 'hospital food." He and Jason head off to a nice restaurant above the Spy Museum, I think Zola's.

Please hold Jason's surgery in your prayers and good thoughts. Picture him running and walking with ease. Imagine him being able to sit with ease on a chair and into a car. Pray that he will be able to flex his hip 110 degrees and his post op will be pain free and without complications. Pray that all will go well during surgery; for his MD's and all the other medical professionals who will be supporting him during surgery. He mentioned, "needing courage." Let us pray that he experiences the courage and strength that lies within him and let us send him ours and our peace for his spirit and mind and body. For we are one in our care for Jason and ask blessings of his healing and a long and healthy life. Thank you for being on the journey.


Anonymous Kathy said...

Rest assured, Jason will be in my thoughts and prayers tomorrow.

Monday, February 27, 2006 10:04:00 PM  

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