Friday, February 5, 2021

The Week's Backstory

It has been a highly nerve wracking week for me this week, and now that it's settling down to nearly normal, I guess I'll tell you what has been going on.  

The week's nerve-wracking actually started last week with an email from my brother in South Florida.  I have only one sibling, my big brother who's three years older than I am.  My niece went on a trip to a bridesmaids party with some friends of hers out of state (possibly Tennessee).  Rather than get the parking fees for the long weekend, she asked her dad to drive her to the airport and then pick her up after the weekend.  So dad and daughter spend about an hour in a car together on both days.  His daughter came down with Covid.  By last week, brother and sister in law both were sick and signed up for a Covid test.  They got the results they were positive by last Friday.  

The past Monday, brother was feeling like he had a nasty flu, but was concerned he might be getting bronchitis or worse.  He called this primary care doc who said, "get to the ER."  He was admitted by Monday afternoon.  It turned out that by Tuesday, he was feeling pretty normal and would have thought the flu was over with, but the team of doctors had more things in mind.  He was treated with plasma from patients who recovered from Covid, the new drug Remdesivir, and more.  They said his blood had high levels of a protein (D-Dimer) that indicates clots being formed; a test which has been used widely treating Covid patients.  Based on that, they gave him anti-clotting medications and a blood transfusion that was supposed to help the clotting issue as well.  I'm awaiting a call, text or other message saying he was discharged from the hospital, but while he's moving in the direction of "out of the woods," I don't think he's really there.

The other thing which sucked all the attention we had was a veterinary visit with surgery for one of our cats, the one I call my "little buddy," Mojo.  (That was his name when we adopted him in the summer of 2010, and we kept it.)  We usually call him Moe, and if any cat I've ever known had an excess of personality, it's Moe.  Unfortunately, Moe has allergies (as I do) which makes him tend to be a mouth-breather and need to get his teeth cleaned more often (as I do).  Last year's visit got canceled by Covid and the vet shutting down part of the year, and though we knew it was needed, it just didn't get done.  The vet came up with a way of coping and started seeing patients again midway through the year, and when we took them in for their annual shots and visits at the end of December, it was a priority to get that done.  The doctor examined his mouth there in the clinic and said he had broken canine tooth that needed to be removed. 

Tuesday morning we delivered Mojo to the vet's office expecting him to get his teeth cleaned and one removed.  Instead, when we picked him up seven hours later we found he had three teeth extracted and his gums sutured back together.  He spent the first few hours at home doing the motion cats make when they get some fur stuck on their tongues and dripping saliva slightly pink with blood.  As he was walking around the house trying to make the pain go away, the after effects of the anesthesia had him losing control of his back legs and flopping over.  It was heart-wrenching to watch. 

Tuesday night through Thursday afternoon were slow improvement, but last night seemed to be the turning point, after his nightly pain pill (he was only allocated two pills that were supposed to be good for 24 hours each).  While we saw him drink a little water on Wednesday night, Thursday night was the first time we saw him eat any food we put down and drink water.  Today he's acting mostly like himself although still slower and still not interacting with us as much.  Much like my brother, while he's moving in the direction of "out of the woods," I don't think he's really there.

So if I've been a bit distracted, this is what has been going on.


  1. you could say you had a full week... you need some shooting done

  2. Yow...sorry to hear, SiG!

    Hope your brother recovers quickly, and the kitty as well!

  3. Very understandable, a speedy recovery to your brother and little furry companion.

  4. best wishes to all for a quick, easy recovery

  5. If I caught covid and reacted badly, this is the treatment I'd want: ; updates moved to and/or

    Also don't miss:

    1. Those are a couple of interesting links. Other folks may wonder about clicking on them - they look worthwhile.

      Brother was discharged from the hospital and is home now; they gave him a dose of prednisone before leaving. I don't know if he was on prednisone IV the whole time, but I think he was.

      The response to Covid-19 has been among the most bizarre and illogical things I've ever seen. I can't imagine how doctors who have successfully treated patients can be publicly shunned like has happened to these guys, or that group that was saying they've seen great results with hydroxychloroquine. Here's measured data saying something. They could say they'd like more data or different tests, but to censor it and cancel the doctors is way over the line.

    2. It doesn't bring in the big bucks to the Pharmaceutical oligarchs!

      The hydroxychloroquine also was endorsed by Orange Man Bad in addition to not enriching the pharmaceutical companies.

    3. If you work through the IRS materials to determine if a worker is an employee or an independent contractor or form if you want the IRS to make the determination, you discover American healthcare workers are federal government employees.

      I can't imagine how doctors who have successfully treated patients can be publicly shunned

      Quick, name fifty mainstream current public policy questions about which the mainstream government position addresses the underlying issues and is 90% true. ...Ok, name just one. If your theory of politics doesn't predict the results you observe, then your theory is disproven.

  6. SiG, it does appear to have been a rather "bumpy" week for you. Glad that your brother is home from the hospital and prayerfully improving. We have some friends and family members that have been or are currently touch and go with Covid. More especially I can understand when it is your only brother as I am the elder of a pair of brothers.

    Hope the kitty gets better. They are resilient. We have a 15 year old that we though might be a goner a couple of weeks ago.

    1. Moe is doing better today than yesterday. I can't say fully back to normal but eating and drinking seem normal, which is good. Older cats tend to get kidney issues and while they tested normal during our visit in December, they're getting on in age and keeping the fluid flushing is something to watch closely.

      We adopted Mojo from a rescue shelter in July of '10, so we don't really know his age. It's not like we can ask, but we think he's in the 14 to 15 range, too.

  7. Remdesivir is the COVID version of acyclovir: it's an anti-viral, in this case the first choice.
    The prednisone is a steroid to combat inflammation, particularly in respiratory passages, to make breathing inflammation and shortness of breath better.
    Both are generally daily or more, in-hospital.

    Elevated clotting (indicated by the elevated d-dimer) is how COVID tends to go from bad to fatal. Anti-coagulants like Lovenox are usually administered until things start getting back to normal, also usually as a daily injection.

    Moderate rest, and good hydration are always a good idea.

    If he didn't progress to serious and protracted pneumonia, that's a good thing.

  8. Hoping the healing continues unabated and uneventful.

    Saw my internist this week and he said COVID is the damndesst disease he's ever seen hit the medical community (he's in his 60's). He says it seems patients go along and around Day 5 is the turning point; they either start getting better, or they start going downhill - fast. And the hard part is, there's no predicting who will do what. People with a long list of comorbidities get better a lot of the time; people in hale health keel over. I'm glad to hear that your brother's doctors were on their toes and knew what to look for, and had a plan to put into motion.

  9. Hoping things get better, soon.

    Whitehall, NY