Friday, November 23, 2007

PD Training - Day 4

Last day of training. Waited to do my morning exchange until we were in the PD unit, noted weight, temperature and blood pressure as usual. The nurse announced that today I was going to learn how to give myself EPO shots. These are weekly shots that I have been taking at the doctor's office for the past 4 years or so. I kept trying to stab myself with the needle, and I could NOT do it. The needle would get to within about 1cm of my skin before it stopped cold, as though I had an invisible shield against my skin. It isn't that the shot is painful - I know from long experience that it is NOT.

I. just. CAN'T. stick. myself. with. a. needle.

Finally, the nurse got tired of watching me try and fail to inject myself, and at the next closest approach of the needle, she tapped me smartly on the hand. Needle went in, and I was able to push the plunger, no problem. I had managed to inject myself! But the nurse agreed that I would probably not be able to inject myself with the EPO at home, so she told me to take my supplies over to the doctor's office, and have them give me the shot, as usual. Reason I now need to take my EPO supplies to the doc's office is something to do with insurance and starting dialysis. At the first mention of "insurance", I gave in to that black magic and didn't ask further questions.

When we were ready to leave, the nurses loaded up my car with supplies that would last until Tuesday, when my first dialysis shipment would come in. That's when I realized that the new supplies that had been ordered were for the 2.5 litre bags - because they had been ordered before we found out that even though I was at the weight that they usually used 2.5, I could barely funtion with 2.0 litres in me. This means that once I start using those supplies, if I want to avoid feeling like a stuffed sausage, I am going to have to pay attention to the fill process, not just take off the clamp and happily continue reading until I realize the fill bag is empty (which is a major culprit in extending my exchange times). I am going to have to keep an eagle eye on the bag and not fill more than 2 litres...

I also borrowed a collapsible IV pole from the PD unit - the one I'd ordered wouldn't even be shipped until Monday. Even now, I'm sitting here patting myself on the back because I thought about this in advance, and actually remembered to ask the nurse if I could borrow one. Best thing I could have done. Stickman Industries, the main (and as far as I know, the only) maker of Peritoneal Dialysis peripherals, must be making money hand over fist - remember I said I'd ordered $500 worth of stuff? That was one collapsible IV pole ($125), one solution-bag-heater bag ($300), and 4 tuck-away belts for my catheter ($20 each).

And loaded down with all these things, Amma and I got home, I finished up work for the day at 7pm, completed my evening exchange, and then we went hunting for a foot stool/cushion for my rocking chair. Also a lightweight rolling laptop table, for those occasions when I know I'm going to have to work upstairs. So we started at the farthest store (BigLots, if you want to know), where I'd previously got the foot cushion that I use at work to keep my feet elevated.

The intention was to go on to whichever store sold computer furniture, and get that lightweight laptop table. We didn't find the foot cushion at BigLots, but we did find THE cutest little footstool, which we got for a mere $8 - it was listed for $16, but Amma pointed out that the cushion looked a little frayed. So the guy at the checkout stand promptly said - how about if I give you a further 50% discount on that? And so I just as promptly said "Yes!" :-) And the laptop table too was a bargain - it was a $35, where it would have been at $60 at most other stores.

And since we'd found both items we needed, we didn't need to go to any other store. YAY! Have I mentioned I HATE HATE HATE shopping? Oh also, remind me to post pics, one of these days, of my little dialysis corner that is sending questing tendrils into the rest of my bedroom. *sigh* Gone are the days when my bedroom was all mine and just for sleeping. *heavy sigh*

1 comment:

Shyam said...

Yes, do. Especially a photo of your bargain footstool :)