Diff'rent Strokes is your source for information about Todd Thelin and his stroke recovery. Please feel free to add comments about posts, add new information in the comments, e-mail new information for me to post, or ask questions that we can answer. Keep in mind that posts are moderated, so they will need to be approved before they show-up. This helps fight spam.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Day 5

I just finished a phone call with Todd. Alicia took Maddie and Alex to go walk in the Pioneer Day parade downtown while I watched Oliver until Amy came to freshen-up. So I haven't seen him today and I probably won't. Tomorrow I will check before I go in since Sunday is the day a lot of people try to visit. It is a tiny half-room and a lot of people visiting make it difficult.

I talked with Todd on the phone because he was talking to Dad and told him that he was going to kick my butt (well, it was stronger word than that) because I hadn't called him back yet. So my dad called me up and had me talk to him. His first words were, "What's your problem?" When I told him I didn't know what he was talking about, he informed me that I haven't taken care of the 500 humanoids yet. I told him I was busy lately with Oliver, but I would get right on it.

We then had a pretty good conversation where some of it was dream-state and some of it was very real. At the end he expressed how upset he was because he knew this wasn't only hurting him, it hurt many people and they were crying, saying they didn't know what to do. I assured him that no matter what we feel, we were there for him, would take care of things, and it was more important that he forget about how we feel and focus on getting better. He said he understood. Of course he also gripped about the doctors.

From my perspective, the doctors have been fabulous. It could be easy to treat patients like pieces of meat, especially after they have had strokes and are not all that responsive. However, these doctors and nurses take the time not only to talk to Amy and whoever else is there and explain what is going on, but they address Todd and talk him through what is happening, even if he seems to be asleep. These are even more reasons the University of Utah Medical Center is listed in US News and World Report's list of best hospitals in 2007 (link).

By the way, while I was looking at the link to US News and World Report, I ran across and article that lists music as medicine for the brain, especially for stroke victims and for those who have involuntary tremors. Todd has been asking for music and today was listening to some. The link to the article is here.

I think the only negative thing I have heard so far is my dad fear that Todd's convulsion episodes are getting more pronounced and frequent. The explanation I remember for the episodes is that the phantom pain from the pain centers induce a kind of circadian rhythm. This is similar to when some people tap their fingers or hands onto something when they have a headache or feel nausiated. This kind of rhythm helps us cope with the pain. These are just big circadian rhythm patterns.

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