June 2009
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Dad, another day in the battle at LLUMC

I am writing this with an understanding of the peculiarities of Palmers as opposed to any medical background which I do not have. I will defer to Dr. Eric for that. If I want an expert in Palmer peculiarities, I will defer to my son Eric, who seems so have several.

Yesterday when I went to see dad I helped him get up into a wheelchair to go to the bathroom. As I was helping him up on the edge of the bed, he stated, “I am dying.” I have said the same thing the day after a day of yard work when I was in so much pain that I did not sleep well and it hurt to move. I am not sure if that statement was based on the medical facts and prognosis over the next year or the simple fact that Dad was in pain. He did not have a good night sleep and was tired. I am concerned that he is not sleeping or getting rested.

As of this morning when I visited I was in a line with 11 white coats in front of the room. They went in the room and the group was introduced to Dad. He was asked a couple of question. “How long have you been sick?” Dad’s response, “I do not know, ask my wife, she know my history.” I then stated, “The cancer was discovered about three weeks ago and he has not looked well for the past few months.” He was then asked, “Have you lost any weight?” Dad’s response was, “About 20 pounds.” He was told they were looking as a group how they could help him. Dad’s response, “Good, get me out of here,”

As they left, I pulled up a chair to talk to Dad. He was tired and had a rough night. He said that he has not slept well since he has been in the hospital. He was in pain. Paul, the nurse on duty was checking with dad. He brought him a meter that measures the volume of air that dad inhales. Dad is supposed to use it several times an hour to help him keep moisture from building up in his lungs. I let Paul know that Dad was in pain. Paul asked Dad if it was OK to talk to me about his condition. Dad said yes, that I was his oldest son. Paul asked dad if he needed anything for pain. Dad nodded no. I think this is a typical Palmer trait. Paul asked what his pain level was, one to ten, ten being run over by a truck, one being a walk in the park and five, the worst headache you have ever had. Dad responded seven.

How much pain does a person need to be in and say that they are alright and need nothing for pain? Paul gave Dad something for the pain. He began to feel better and looked less tense. He closed his eyes. I asked him if he was going to get some sleep. He nodded yes. I let him know that I loved him and that I would see him later tonight or tomorrow morning.

Dad is in pain. Pain is part of the disease process that he is in. Dad’s wife told a church compassionate service person (RS Pres. for those that know the terminology) yesterday that everything was going to be fine. That dad was going to Loma Linda, going to have an operation and that he would be home.

As it looks to me, the untrained eye that has not seen the CT scan results, Dad has a mass in him large enough to cause him a lot pain. A mass that, after looking at my anatomy book illustration of the liver and gall bladder, I cannot imagine has not caused some real havoc on the circulation system in the lower center of the liver. Who knows what this havoc has caused on a long term prognoses. I know that we will know more in the future.

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1 comment to Dad, another day in the battle at LLUMC

  • Hawleyhock

    Saying no, when offered something for pain is not just a male Palmer trait. It is the “Y” part of the male that makes them different from a female.