Tuesday, March 23rd 2010

The drugs don’t work!

Over the past week we’ve been experimenting with Diclofenac in combination with Paracetamol and the pressure relieving mattress to try and find something that would give me a good night’s rest. Unfortunately they have all failed and I continually wake up in the early hours of the morning, typically around 3:30 AM by which time I’ve been lying in the same position for about 5 1/2 hours. No sooner am I awake and I become aware of discomfort in my lower back which is sufficiently uncomfortable to continuously impinge on my consciousness thus preventing me from getting back to sleep. So until 8 AM in the morning I am fully conscious but with my eyes closed. Now these drugs that I’m taking are supposed to be slow release and in theory should carry me through the night but to be honest they are either totally ineffective or past their best by the time I wake up. Consequently after weeks of partial sleep I am really starting to feel fatigued and I definitely don’t feel my best during the day.

It’s also been a frustrating week in terms of trying to obtain a profiling bed, and it hasn’t been for want of trying either. I’ve had district nurses, GPs and the care agency all breathing down the necks of the folks over at Joint Equipment Services. Finally at lunchtime today one was delivered and two very pleasant chaps soon had it assembled. I can now also start using the new foam mattress that had been delivered last week. Because it is actually thinner than the pressure relieving mattress it would actually be too low to the ground for me to be able to stand up even with the assistance of a carer. But the new all-singing all-dancing profiling bed can be raised or lowered so it should be a lot easier for me.

I’m really looking forward to tonight and seeing what this bed is capable of. Hopefully we can configure it in such a way that it will take the loading of my spine although it may turn out of course that being left in any position for too many hours will start to cause problems. But for the next two nights we can monitor the situation quite closely as I am taking advantage of the Hospice at Home service. Starting tonight I shall be having a Macmillan trained waking nurse stay with me from 10 PM through to 7 AM. So if I should wake up in the night and find myself in pain I will have somebody close at hand to either reposition me or administer some pain relief medication.

Fingers crossed for a long and peaceful sleep!

Mark

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