One of my favorite sites on the Web is called the “oops” list:
The Oops list has many photos and a few video clips – funny and odd things, many of airplanes in various states of not flying. Give it a look.
So, my “oops” is that yesterday I wrote that Nancy’s PICC line had been inserted. I called that one too soon – sort of a “Dewey Defeats Truman” thing:
I was out-maneuvered by the medical folks. In searching for internal blood loss their tests were coming up with a lot of nothing. Thus, the PICC inserter was pushed away from the insertee and folks showed up (mid-afternoon) with a yummy barium sulphate drink. X-rays have an unfortunate propensity to pass through empty intestines but not through barium. By ingesting and thereby coating the walls of the gastro-intestinal tract (in Nancy’s case now, the small intestines) with barium the snaky little thing shows up clearly on the X-ray pictures.
Barium in its elemental state is not found naturally as it combines easily with lots of other things thereby producing a variety of compounds, one being Barium Sulfate (BaSO4). In most mineral collections you can find Barium-“Desert Roses” and these are a concentric pattern of increasingly larger crystals stained red with iron. Picture here:
That is about as familiar as one gets with Barium unless you are lucky enough to be handed a glass of Barium Sulfate liquid mix. This is not anyone’s favorite drink.
So you drink the stuff, gag, spit, and wait. After sufficient time the small intestines are ready for their time before the “camera” and then you wait some more and they are back for second and third exposures. This exam is sometimes called a “Barium follow through” and in Nancy’s case yesterday the follow-through ended at 10:30 P.M. She had gone a couple of days without real food and her digestive tract – well cleaned out – was not prepared for crispy chicken and biscuits. We have one very unhappy Southern belle.
The day ended with no PICC line so that procedure was today but delayed because the PICC-inserter had a full schedule and did get to Nancy until about 3:15 P.M. They finished with an X-ray to check for proper placement of the end of the catheter. She called me about 5 P.M. to confirm all is well. Except for the known issues with her health they have found nothing new.
I have a car-service appointment (a mile from the hospital) at 10 A.M. tomorrow so we are hoping she might get walking papers by noonish.
We’ll see. John