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Dave is back in the hospital with a fever

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:21 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Well, I've been telling you how well he was doing. This afternoon, he told me he had the chills. I took his temp, and it was 101. His surgeon said to take him to the ER. He was admitted, and they still don't know the cause.

He has had more and more mucus. And, it hurts when he urinates. So, they don't know if it's lungs or bladder at this point. He has had all the blood tests, so they should know something in 24 hrs. I do know they caused him pain in the urethra area when they took him for xrays while his catheter was still in.

I am a basketcase. I'm sorry to report this after giving hope to those having this surgery soon.

This is my theory---the rhBMP used to help the fusion. It's supposed to be problematic for some cervical patients, according to the research.

Keep him in your prayers!

Linda MI


  • Linda, If I remember right, wasn't this Dave's first surgery, and isn't it c-spine? The reason I ask is that I think bmp is not approved for use in the c-spine except for on revisions to a non-union.

    I hope they get things figured out soon, and that he recovers quickly. Keep the faith!
    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
  • It's NOT approved, but they use it!! I hope this turns out to be nothing.

  • Linda,
    They used BMP on my last surgery and i can say it was a lot more to get through. The swelling was horrific and still having some problems with it as well and am 7 weeks post op. I do hope things get better for him.
  • Linda -

    Being the care-giver to a spiney husband, I know all too well what you are going through. Hang in there!! I hope they can figure out what is going on soon and get him back on the recovery track.

  • keep us posted. I know you are full of worry--we are worried with you. Any surgery is serious and scary and can have complications. The last N/S I talked to about surgery for stenosis reminded me that every surgery carries risk of complications, and I should not jump into it. We hope Dave heals soon. We are all learning from his experience and your posts. God bless you. ---Mazy
  • many prayers and well wishes coming to the both of you....please keep us posted as you can and remember that we are here for you too....take care....Miki
  • Let us know how Dave is doing. I will keep him in my prayers.
  • I'm so glad they are taking it serious, doing all the tests and have him re-admitted.

    I'm pretty sure that one of the reasons I was not released until yesterday was that they were watching for a fever - I had the possible allergic reaction to BMP - or a hemorhage, the jury is out on what the actual cause of my right leg numbness.

    Do find out if he did have BMP, and let us know what the tests show -

  • They still don't know the cause of his fever. It has gone down to between 97.7 and 99.5. Don't ask me why it varies. A nurse friend said it could be dehydration. His surgeon came, but doesn't think it's his neck. Actually, his mucus is getting better, too. He's on an antibiotic for possible pneumonia---very early stage. In the hospital, they don't think it's a big deal unless the temp is 101.

    By the way, the surgeon didn't use rhBMP. He told me he would have told us. I don't know about that....do they always tell everything they use? He knew about the adverse interaction for cervical. He also said he was one of the first to use it for lumbar.

    Anyway, thanks for the good thoughts. Please keep praying until he gets home!

    Linda MI
  • Hoping your feeling better soon.

  • are with you Linda and Dave. Please keep us posted as you are able.
  • Thanks for the update - best of wishes to a speedy recovery
  • Linda,
    Good to hear Dave is doing better. Keep us posted on how he is doing. If they used BMP they would tell you they did so. It will also be on the operative reports as well.
  • I hope he get better soon,i will say a prayer for him ....
  • Linda, I know that it is not approved for c-spine. The reason I questioned whether he really used it was because I just had a revision and the surgeon DID use bmp, but I knew it ahead of time. Whatever it takes to get me to fuse is okay with me.

    I see further down that the doc told you he did not use it. I feel confident that you can trust what he says. I would have been very surprised if he did use it.

    Hope Dave is feeling better soon. How are you holding up? It is hard on the caretaker as well as the patient.

    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
  • That is what I thought initially. He had pain, burning and frequency. BUT.... the ER dr. didn't think there was enough infection in the urine. You'd think he would have listened to the symptoms. Today, the culture came back positive, so they are treating him with a different antibiotic. He sounds much better too---his voice is much improved and he doesn't have all that phlegm.

    One thing I really observed from this experience is that Doctors do NOT listen. He has been seen by his regular Doc, infectious disease and gastro Dr. It's a wonder they can help anyone, because they don't listen and comprehend what the patient is telling them. It's a good thing I was there to clarify things---Dave was getting frustrated.

    Hopefully, he will be able to go home tomorrow!! He was housebound for 10 days anyway, so he can start getting out soon.

    Hospitals are pretty scary places!!

    Thanks for all your support and prayers!

    Linda (and Dave) MI
  • Oh absolutely they don't listen (at least some of them) and it sucks when the proper care isn't given much sooner because of that!! It's absolutely frustrating! I hope Dave is feeling better soon. :)
  • I'm so glad that you have the culprit pinned and are now blasting with the correct ammo (the correct meds)

    Good luck and best wishes!

    p.s. I think this housebound stuff might prove to be my biggest bane! I can relate to how Dave is feeling!
  • I don't want to scare you guys, but I just want you to learn from our experience. I really think this could have been avoided, if we had kept on top of things initially!!

    A week ago yesterday, he started to feel bad again. Of course, he made out like it was not serious. In the evening, it was 99.5, but by midnight it was 100.5, and 102 at 5 when I took him back. I should have ignored him and taken him earlier.

    They think the UTI came back and went into his kidney. The infectious disease Dr. thought it had something to do with the surgery, until he saw the enlarged kidney on the CT---which made him very happy. He spend 4 days in the hospital, waiting for his temp to go down, and his BP to go up. It was 70/40 when he was admitted. His surgeon visited daily, until he knew that the surgery wasn't the cause.

    Anyway, he is home on IV antibiotics---the big guns---Vancomycin. He may have had sepsis, or been close to it. Oh---a little pneumonia, too!! I hook him up for his drip every day. Thank goodness our insurance covers it, or we would be back at the hospital for 3 weeks daily. Hopefully that's all it will take.

    His ACDF from July 24 is no problem, still. It would have been too good to be true if there wasn't this glitch!!

    This is what we would do the next time, after surgery.....take a temp twice a day and blood pressure. If we would have seen the fever coming back and the low BP, I would have insisted on him going back to the hospital earlier.

    One more thing.....make sure after urinating (while trying to get rid of a UTI), force out every last drop. Dave was an "incomplete voider"---which he didn't know until a CT showed he didn't empty his bladder all the way. He probably reinfected himself, according to the urologist.

    Other than that, the cervical surgery was a piece of cake!!

    Linda MI (who just retired from teaching and is now an IV nurse)

  • Good luck to you both, Dave and Linda. You sure had your share of problems. Let's hope that this was the last of it.

    Dave, get better soon! Linda, don't forget to take care of yourself while you are taking care of Dave!

    Best wishes,

  • I hope things continue to improve for Dave and stay that way.

    Out of curiousity, how long after surgery should we be concerned about possible post-op infections? I'm 3 weeks out now, and wonder if I'm out of the woods from an infection point of view.

  • and I did find some mention of infection surfacing after a year. I believe this was caused from infection being in the hardware and staying lowgrade for a while. My friends tell me I should stay off the computer!!

    If I were you, I wouldn't worry. I don't worry about Dave's neck---just this UTI!! That started 5 days after his surgery.

    Linda MI
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