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Update on Melissa Buhmeyer (Lizzardlee)
Janice_78 posted:
The latest from Mel's husband: More ups & downs past several days, keeping moods volatile. Last Thursday, Melissa's new midline IV access also started leaking. This IV is supposed to last 4 to 6 weeks and is her lifeline to receive nourishment, fluids and medications. The pick line experts were called in & while we waited, Mel could not get nutrition (PPN) or fluids. 5 hours later the team arrived with ultrasound equipment & relaxing drugs & inserted 2 new IV lines into her right forearm & the midline, just put in last week was pulled. Getting a central line port put in place became urgent since the newly placed IV lines might blow at anytime & chemo cannot be given through them since a central line is required. Also, since the acities fluid was lost the oncologist gave 4 options (liver biopsy, wait on fosladex to work or not, begin taxotere, or keep using fosledex and begin taxeoere. Port placement surgery was scheduled for Friday and we finally got to speak to the pain management team concerning in home options which included many things. However, best non-invasive options are IV pain meds and fentanyl lollipops.
So, Friday the port was put into main vein successful (this was great since there was only 1 route the surgeon could use since other ways are blocked due to previous central lines and lots of radiation. Within hours of returning from surgery, Iridia Benadryl , antibiotic, dexamethasone and the first Taxotere was administered. Also, PPN was halted but continued after chemo was complete (about 8 p.m. that night). The IV nutrition was only going for just over an hour when her forearm IVs blew and Mel's arm began to swell. Mel had no nutrition from 2200 Fri til 1130 Sat morning since they could not mix IV fluids, IV narcotics and pain meds at once into the central vein port. We finally got the nutritionist to approve an amino acid dextrose fluid to supplement until the new IV nutrition bag could arrive...without our pushing the process the nutritionist and nurses were going to wait for TPN arrival Sat night so Melissa would have been 24 hr without nutrition.
Sat afternoon Melissa had abdomen sounds in all quadrants and she continued to extend the periods off the NG tube suction for a total of 12 hours that day. Full IV nutrition started at half dose and full dose will start Sun night. Melissa continues to have trouble sleeping, but Sat night (early am Easter) she was given something to really push her over and help her sleep for first time at hour than 1an hour at a time. Daily blood tests continue to show her albumin levels extremely low but this could be due to both coming off PPN for 5 hrs waiting for IV line procedure and then another 14 plus hrs when new line stopped working, supplemental given until TPN given Sat night Also, there are chemo effects that also could drops levels. There also has been a problem with high blood sugar (108 to 175 range) probably due to dextrose in IV and base substance of PPN / TPN so they are checking blood sugar levels every 6 hours. Easter morning some wonderful friends dropped by and brought Easter worship to Mel in the oncology ward. She was also put on a full liquid diet Easter morning and left the NG suction off all day while staying comfortable. At 1430 the NG tube was taken out. However, she gradually lost her appetite and her stomach started feeling hard, and she also started to choke and then started throwing up Early this morning, after 30 min of lidocaine prep, the NG tube was reinserted (scary and without any anti anxiety meds). The Dr ordered X-ray to check placement due to problems with the last insertion and the tube ended up 2 inches long, but it was immediately fixed. Needless to say she didn't sleep well.

On the bright side, she should be headed home shortly once all the in home nurse care can be arranged (IV nutrition, NG support, IV meds, etc) That's good news itself.
judyfams responded:
Reading Melissa's story brings tears. How one woman can be so strong and courageous leaves me in awe.
I thank you for letting us know how she is doing as her strength inspires all of us.
She is fortunate to have such loyal friends and family at her side.
Our prayers are for her - for her perseverance - her will to live - her courage but mostly for her as a sister who has truly earned our love and admiration.
G-d Bless her and keep her safe.

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