Saturday, December 08, 2007
The Good Pus, The Bad Pus, & The Ugly Pus
Pus. According to Webster’s, pus is a yellow-white substance found in abscesses, sores, etc. consisting of liquid plasma in which white blood cells are suspended. Yuk. We took Macayla to the surgeon’s office yesterday to let them check her tube site and incision. In the last 48 hours it had not looked too good so we were concerned that it might be the beginning of an infection. The doctor said it was not an infection but that it certainly did not look as good as it should. We learned that there are two kinds of pus. Yes, there is normal, good pus (hard to imagine for those of us outside the medical profession) and then there’s pus from infection. Macayla had some pus coming out from around her site and it was the “good” kind. There is a fancy medical term for it, but it still looks like pus to me. It did not have a foul odor and her site was not warm. These are indicators of infection and, yes, “bad” pus. They gave us some special gauze-like material to pack around the tube site to help dry the incisions up. We packed the site and put regular gauze over it. All I know is that pus, good or bad, is ugly. On another note, Macayla may go back for a GI study to see how her stomach empties. Even before the surgery her stomach seemed to empty slowly and that makes it difficult to get all of the calories and volume of water she needs. It was worse after surgery so we started a medication called Reglan and so far it seems to help. Yesterday, I felt like I wasn’t keeping up with her stomach. She was empty pretty quickly between feedings. Hopefully this will solve the problem and we can skip the GI study, but if the medication is not successful we can do the study and determine if there are any structural or functional problems. Overall Macayla seems to be turning the corner as of yesterday, but I wish we could get the button on her feeding tube to quit leaking.
Posted by Jeff at 7:26 AM