We sent back the equipment today with the exception of the trapeze bar. I do think that it is something that we will purchase. Seems silly to rent at a fee of about $60 per month when we can purchase the one we have in the home for $300 – and likely our insurance coverage will pay a portion since my husband’s mobility issue is chronic. The one we have here is set up and totally disinfected – so I think we go with what we have.
One thing that struck me about the last five months is how obsessed we have become about disinfecting things. I remember early on talking about my husband’s prognosis with his doctor and she stated there were several things to be very careful about. She commented that oftentimes it is not the cancer that kills the patient but rather something preventable – like infection or a blood clot.
With respect to preventing infection – the germ became our enemy. As a family we became hyper-vigilant about sanitizing surfaces using cleaners with a disinfectant in them, ensuring that people who visited, or even we ourselves, regularly hand sanitized. We have hand sanitizers at every entrance of our home, in the bathrooms, as well the communal areas of our home. When my husband was actively in chemotherapy I was very direct about asking people to hand sanitize. I also asked people who were not well to avoid visiting until they were better, our own children included. No time for hurt feelings even though I suspect there may have been some. In the end we wanted to avoid introducing any more problems into our world than we already had. To this day when he is out in areas where there are a lot of people, my husband will still wear a surgical mask to avoid germs and in some instances, gloves.
At our first visit for treatment in the hospital’s Chemo Suite – before my husband even sat down I disinfected the area – the chair, table, arm rests, anything he might touch. The attending nurse came over and said that it was unnecessary since everything is thoroughly disinfected between patients, as well as bleached by the night crew. Regardless, we continued to do the same routine each and every time we went. Interestingly, two nights ago we watched The Agenda on TVO which had a segment on about hospitals in Ontario and how they are not achieving the cleanliness standards they should be (Episode – Next to Godliness – December 16, 2014). No doubt – since the vast number of people who walk through the door are sick. I believe anyone who is immune compromised should wear a mask and use hand sanitizer frequently – you just can’t be too careful.
I did some research on clots after our GP had made her comment and was shocked to find that a large number of people do pass away as a result of a blood clot, even while they are hospitalized – and this is not just limited to cancer patients. When my sister-in-law underwent emergency surgery and was put into an induced coma this is one thing that her son checked on very early in the process – to make sure that the blood thinner (aka Fragmin®) was administered right away. It was and she did just fine in this regard. Unfortunately for my husband in early September my husband did develop a blood clot – the mother of all clots, since it spread from his ankle to his groin. Once he developed it there was not much that could be done other than deal with it. So thus we commenced the Fragmin® injection and continue with this injection to the present time. Every day in the belly. I have to say he’s getting pretty tender there, but again, he just deals with it. Could the clot have been avoided? Who knows? When he was first diagnosed with cancer, our GP had recommended as much gentle activity and exercise as my husband could manage while undergoing chemo, but the reality was he just felt too awful to do much of anything. He was nauseous and his back hurt. His back was, and continues to be, problematic and painful and consequently contributes his inertia when he feels under the weather.
There it is – I am full circle to how this article started out – yup, I think we keep the trapeze.