Well, it’s a good news/bad news kind of day. The transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE) was performed today. The good news is that it came back negative. This means three things: 1) that there is no evidence of a current heart anomaly in Mom from any medical perspective. 2) Better still, four weeks of IV antibiotic treatment for the UTI and MSSA can be reduced to two weeks. 3) Even better, the possibility of Mom returning to her own room at Piedmont Place is shortened by two weeks because the PICC Line can be removed upon completion of what would ordinarily be four weeks of antibiotic treatment.
The bad news is that the TEE came back negative. This means two things: 1) We still don’t know – and likely never will – why Mom blacked out and fell two Saturdays ago. Therefore, we can’t fix what ails her because we don’t know what ails her. 2) The negative TEE result removes from me the ability to keep Mom in the hospital for further strengthening. On top of that, the physical therapist walked Mom up and down the halls for a total of 600 ft. today; her greatest distance yet. I now consider the catheter removal issue moot. It’s gonna happen, and Mom is gonna have to get up and walk to the bathroom just like the rest of us. That she is still unstable and weak doesn’t seem to matter to anyone but me.
So Mom returns to Piedmont Place tomorrow (Wednesday). She will not reside in her own room. Rather, she’ll be in a Skilled Nursing Rehab room for two to three weeks. This little detail is made necessary by the fact that Medicare won’t pay for the rehab if she doesn’t occupy a rehab bed.
Otherwise, Mom had a good day. She was unsettled before the TEE, and I could see her wrestle with her spiritual/mental psyche to find a place of peace about it. She recovered from the procedure without the scratchiness so often experienced by patients who have tubes stuck down their throats.
Mom does seem to look a little better each day. For the past several days, she has been sitting in the armchair, not napping, and is quite chatty. She has seemed cognitive until late in the day when her body tires. Then she goes in and out of sentience.
Mom revealed today the perception that I forced the sale of her house and the move to Assisted Living back in 2005. I gently explained to her that doctors had caused that to happen because of Mom and Pop’s medical conditions. I wrote about this in the Their Story chapter of the ‘About’ pages of ElderBlog. The thing is that for six years, Mom has believed me to be the bad guy.