November 28, 2009

| January 16, 2011 | 3 Comments

Heart Transplant Journal 

By November 28th, 2009, I was in our Tampa Bay apartment resting and recovering from the heart transplant.  I had been released from the hospital 17 days earlier.  Suzanne and I found navigating through the day was filled with prescription medications, five insulin readings and injections of varying magnitudes per day, two or three blood pressure tests, temperature readings and heart rate readings.  We logged each of our entries into our computer.

For each doctor’s appointment, we printed out this important data and furnished it to Dr. Hoffman for review.  This is my daily routine at this point of the recovery process.

0545 – Awaken soaked in blood from the wound where the defibrillator used to be.  Another shirt bites the dust!  We clean and re-pack the wound and use sterilized gauze pads to cover the opening.

 0600 –  Once settled, I begin the morning bathroom drill.  I weigh-in at the usual 170. Three pounds either way would be a sign of rejection.

 0615 – Next I use the monitor to gather blood pressure and heart rate stats.  Everything looks consistent.  My blood pressure is 125 over 85 and my heart rate is 117.

0620 –  Next comes the insulin problem.  I was not a diabetic prior to the transplant but the steroids have caused diabetes.  We are hoping this is just a temporary situation that will diminish through lower doses of steroids and more physical activity. The drill is to prick your finger using a lancet, gather a blood sample using the hand held meter and once reading the sugar level, refer to a prescribed chart that indicates how many units of Novolog I should inject.  Each Novolog pen holds 200 units.  The user wastes two units to make sure the needle is attached properly and then simply dials in the number of desired units after attaching the needle.  Then, the user gathers a small amount of body fat and injects the insulin.  At night, I take 20 units on Lantus, which is a long lasting, controlled release form of insulin.  This morning my reading is 147.  Above 150, I must use the formula to decide upon the amount of insulin.  Below 150, there is no need to inject.  No shot.  All-in all, this day is starting well.

0630 – Suzanne and I lay out our daily to do list.

0645 – 0800 –  I use this time to write articles for clients and communicate via e-mail.  For me, the writing is quite therapeutic and my mind is most clear at this time of day.

0800 – I take a battery of medications, including Medrol, Cellcept, Prograf (the staples) and a host of other medications.  My Medrol intake is 32 mgs.  My Cellcept intake is 1000 mgs and my Prograf  is 3 mgs.  I will take these again at night.  Each week I fill my pillbox for medications to be taken four times each day.  I have an 8:00 a.m. feeding, an 11:00 a.m. feeding, a 2:00 p.m. feeding and an 8:00 p.m. intake.  I have included a table of medicines that were used in late November.

0815 – 8:30 – Suzanne serves up a sugar free, salt free high protein breakfast,  I am never hungry but eat as much as possible.

0900 – 1000 – Fall back asleep

1030 – 1100 –  My son Hiland jr. calls.  He is so proud of his newborn daughter, Lily.  I correspond with a client in London.  Receive authorization to cover the Barclay tennis championships.  Do some research.

11:00 – 1200 – Write

1200 – Take insulin reading.  Registers 212 and requires 4 units.  Inject myself in left leg. 

1225 – Turn on Syracuse – UConn  football.  Prepare to lay out weekly medications. 

1300 – 1400 – Take a walk to see Derek Jeter’s new house and how construction is progressing.  I just might be recovered before the castle on the island is completed.  Take afternoon medications.

1445 – Load medications for upcoming week

1515 – Light snack of cinnamon almond bar and glass of diet orange dry.

1530 – 1700 – Write several articles.

1715 – Help Suzanne with groceries and light furniture assembly.  Cannot believe how tiring this is.

1800 – Insulin check and shot – 202 = 4 units

1815 – Heart healthy meal.

1830 – Defibrillator wound open again.  Apply new gauze, bandage, Ruined yet another shirt.

1900 – 1945 – Write.

1945 – Talk with Suzanne and watch Notre Dame.  Set church plans. Reorganize studio.  Discuss her January trip to Albany and my reluctance to leave my safe zone, Tampa Bay.

2000 – Take all meds.

2130 – Take insulin reading at 136.  No injection necessary.

2200 – Take Norvasc.  One Lantus insulin 24 hour injection = 20 units.  Take one Mycelex.

2400 – Awaken with right arm pain.  Take 100mg Darvocet.

0300 – Restless awakening.  Start to write.

0500 – Back to bed.

 

Medication

 

Time

 

11-26

 

11-27

 

11-28

 

11-29

 

Prograf  (0.5 = 2mg)

 

8:00 am.

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

Prograf  (0.5 =1.5mg)

 

8:00 pm

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

Medrol (4mg–sliding)

 

8:00 am.

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

Medrol (4mg–sliding)

 

8:00 pm

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

CellCept (500 = 1000)

 

8:00 am.

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

CellCept (500 = 1000)

 

8:00 pm

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

Septra  (800 mg)

 

8:00 am

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

Myclex  (10 mg)

 

8:15 am

 

0900

 

0900

 

0900

 

0930

 

Myclex  (10 mg)

 

12:30 pm

 

1230

 

1230

 

1300

 

1300

 

Myclex  (10 mg)

 

7:00 pm

 

  

 

1900

 

1900

 

2000

 

Myclex  (10 mg)

 

10:00 pm

 

2200

 

2200

 

2200

 

2200

 

Omprazole (20 mg)

 

8:00 am

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

Norvasc (10 mg – 5mg) *

 

10:00 am

 

1000

 

1000

 

1000

 

1000

 

Norvasc (10 mg – 5mg) *

 

10:00 pm

 

2200

 

2200

 

2200

 

2200

 

Vasotec (5 mg)

 

8:00 am

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

Vasotec (5 mg)

 

8:00 pm

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

2000

 

Aspirin  (325 mg)

 

8:00 am

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

Valcyte(450 mg- 900)

 

8:00 am

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

0800

 

Lantus Injection (16)

 

10:00 pm

 

2200

 

2200

 

2200

 

2200

 

Novolog (scale)

 

7:30 am

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

0.00

 

Novolog (scale)

 

Noon

 

8.00

 

8.00

 

2.00

 

2.00

 

Novolog (scale)

 

6:30 pm

 

2.00

 

2.00

 

2.00

 

2.00

 

Novolog (scale)

 

10:00 pm

 

2.00

 

2.00

 

0.00

 

2.00

 

Darvocet  (100 mg)

   

2200

 

2200

 

2400

 

2200

 

Darvocet (100 mg)

       

0400

 
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3 Comments on "November 28, 2009"

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  1. Sarah S says:

    Hi, I’m new on here and glad to be a part of the threaded.

  2. Flo says:

    Hi hiland
    I am glad to hear that you are doing better. Are u still taking all these Meds now. It’s only been 4 Mths for me and I starte d with 50 pills a day now I m down to 30. I m on the insulin x4 daily no break there. I can never get use of the insulin
    Wish u a wonderful Easter.

    Flo

  3. Hiland Doolittle says:

    Hi Flo, Not taking all the same ones but taking far too many. Steroid induced diabetes and insulin therapy are no fun! Enjoy every day! Congrats on receiving your new heart.

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