9/4/05 2:00 PM
2:00 PM: The home health care nurse was just here to do the blood draw for Sophie to see if her counts are high enough to start the second half of this phase of treatment. We changed her dressing and then got ready to draw blood. No blood. That happened last time the nurse came a month ago, and switching syringes did the trick. Not this time. She tried three different syringes and even tried flushing with saline (which went in, but nothing came out). Randall called the doctor, and they said it's probably a clot. Randall just left to take Sophie to the local ER, where they will inject the line with "TPA", which is a high-powered clot-buster of some sort. If that doesn't work, they will do an ancillary draw from her arm (I'm sure everyone in Dunn will hear her screaming). One concern if it's not a clot is that there may be a kink in the line. In fact, it seems that is what the doctor is suspecting, since that would explain why the saline and heparin go in but blood doesn't come out. I'm not sure what the next step is if that is the problem. Probably surgery to replace or straighten the line. But we won't worry about that until we know for sure what the problem is. It's a 20-minute drive to the hospital, and they should take her right back, since our doctor has called ahead (and she has cancer and her counts are probably low--we've never had to wait in the main waiting room with her). The TPA takes a half hour to take effect, so I hope we'll know more in an hour or so.