The Beginning – Tuesday, May 20

I’m writing this from a hospital room at the University Hospital in Iowa City where my wife is a patient. We would appreciate prayer.

At midnight Sunday morning, Lois woke up very chilled and having cramps in her stomach. We thought it was the flu as several family members (including me) have had the 24 hour variety in the past week. Lois did have a high temp of 102 which we could get down to 99 with Tylenol every four hours. Monday afternoon she was no better and Joy called her good friend, Reagan, who is a Doctor and described the symptoms. Reagan advised us to go to the emergency room.

The local emergency room did some initial blood work and hit the panic button. Lois was severely anemic, her white count was quite high, her liver functions were poor and, the cause of the panic, her hemoglobin was at 5 (normal is 12 and they start giving transfusions if the number is lower than 8). The obvious conclusion was that she was losing blood from her G.I. tract but a stool sample showed nothing.

Giving a unit of blood is the best way to get the hemoglobin up but transfusions are a big deal in rural hospitals. After consultation, we decided University Hospital was the best choice.

We arrived in Iowa City by 8 pm. Monday night. The E.R did a lot of tests and agreed Lois needed blood and admitted her. They also decided on a course of action so during the night they not only gave her one unit of blood, they had her drink “Go Lightly,” the wonderful stuff to prep for upper and lower G.I. scopes.

Everyone is very concerned about where she is losing blood. Since 7:30 am there have been 5 different Dr’s in here asking mostly the same questions. Right now we are waiting for another set of x-rays and at any time they could come and get her for the upper and lower G.I. scopes.

They just took her temp and she continues to have a fever – 102 right now and they’re giving her Tylenol.

Tomorrow should be a day of making decisions.

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