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Country of Residence
United States of America

Health Interests
Caregivers, Children's and teen's health issues, Infectious diseases, Lung and airway disorders, Palliative and end-of-life care

Posts (3)

Nov 3, 2018 · Post-Intensive Care Syndrome (PICS) - Let's talk in Intensive Care (ICU)

@andreab The first year was the hardest. No one prepared you for what happens when you go home and what life is going to be like. I dealt with PICS, PTSD, anxiety/depression, opiod withdrawl, neuropathy, losing my hair, dealing with scars from injuries I sustained while a patient from the oxygen tubes, feeding tubes, chest tubes, and trach; nevermind the impact it had on my family. The first few days in the ICU my family was called to my bedside to say good-bye,…this happened on more than one occasion. It was hard for some to let me back in after that. How do you let someone back in when you've come to terms with the fact that they are gone? Of course then we had to deal with just getting back to some type of normal again, which nothing is really quite normal after that experience and environment. Bills needed to be paid and then I had to deal with insurance companies and disability which do not want to pay claims. Those hoops and hurdles were extremely draining and frustrating and required lawyers and social workers. I had lost 85 lbs being in the ICU then gained a lot back from all the medications. I had extensive nerve damage from being put on my belly in the ICU for up to 18 hours and being rotated back and forth which took a team of 25 people the first couple times. The nerve conduction therapy to try and identify which nerves were impacted was a nightmare that required needles and small shocks. In spite of these adversities I knew my life had some meaning and pulled strength from places I never knew I had. I found amazing "helpers" along the way. I had a hand-therapist who helped me gain use of my hands again, a psychologist who helped me with through my PTSD, and healthcare providers who listened. I always share some words of wisdom that Fred Rogers (from Mr. Rogers Neighborhood) mother shared with him…"Look for the helpers." No matter how bad things are, there are always helpers. This gives me hope, and I use it to try and impact my interactions with others. Thank you for allowing this platform for me to share my story. You are a great example of a helper! 🙂

Nov 3, 2018 · Breaking it Down: Post Intensive Care Syndrome and The Family in Post Intensive Care Syndrome (PICS)

@hodagwi I was a patient in the ICU for nearly two months in an induced coma from the flu and fought Sepsis, Multi-Organ Failure, and pneumonia. My experience brought me into nursing and research. Now I fight everyday to ensure better outcomes for patients and families.I wish I knew of a forum like this when I got back from the hospital. After leaving the ICU and Rehab, I went home and felt like all my support had left me. It was an extremely hard year dealing with isolation, family dynamics that had experienced the trauma of the ICU, tapering off opiods, dealing with pain and mobility issues. Somehow, going into nursing and what that entailed gave me new purpose and energy as I never wanted anyone to go through what I did that first year out of the ICU. I hope I can add well to the discussion moving forward. Glad to know you are both doing well! I have a yellow lab and he is my best pal!

Nov 3, 2018 · Post-Intensive Care Syndrome (PICS) - Let's talk in Intensive Care (ICU)

In 2014 I got the flu and did NOT get my flu shot. I had the H1N1 influenza strand. What followed was two months of an induced coma fighting Sepsis, Pneumonia, Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS), and multi-organ failure. Every day I feel so fortunate to be alive. I was a healthy young man in the prime of life who just got the flu and faced death. The medical and nursing care I received was incredible. From that experience I became a nurse and completed graduate work in Public Health. I am even doing research right now on how to improve communication barriers of awake-mechanically ventilated patients to improve outcomes. I am a patient-family advisor and share my story in hopes it will make an impact. I'm moving on towards doctorate studies now to focus on Patient-Family Centered Care and including patients and families in my research and even as co-authors. I'm happy to join this conversation and look forward to more engagement.