Thursday, April 28, 2011

Thanks to our Firefighters and Paramedics

Brita and I paid a visit this evening to the Lake Forest Park Fire Department. These are the folks who came to assist Steve on a number of occasions - I think at least four times over a period of nine months.

We made up a gift basket of nuts, trail mix, and candy from Costco. Not from the recommended diabetic-renal diet, to be sure, but treats that might help our helpers get through a night.

I remember one evening when Steve was having severe left arm pain during a Home Dialysis run. I called 911 because I was worried that Steve's pain might be cardiac in origin.  Hemodialysis can look daunting: blood running through large-bore tubing, alarms sounding. It wasn't the dialysis I was concerned about; that was handled! I finished getting Steve unhooked from the machine and the medics took over.

Another night, the firefighters helped us get Steve up our steep driveway in his wheelchair - in the snow!

And, of course, there was the unimaginable morning of April 13 - when the medics transported my unresponsive Steve to the hospital, with Steve descending into cardiac arrest on the way. I was so grateful that the medic phoned me (in my car following behind) - verifying that I wanted no further intervention. I think years ago, full intervention would have occurred without question.

We are grateful for these well-trained, good natured firefighters and paramedics who have helped our family on numerous occasions. Thank you for making such troubling situations more tolerable.

Take care.
Linda Gromko, MD

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