My mom was in a car accindent and ripped her diaphram and bruised her lungs, plus she was a heavy smoker. After 2 mo now she has a trake and is slowley trying to be weaned off the vent. She has lasted 48 hours off the vent with the co2 mask on. Our problem is she is starting to look like she is having a stroke. She cant keep her eyes open, she is responsive but cant focus. We did determine she was not releasing her carbon dioxide. Within 5 min of being returned to the vent she opens her eyes and remembers nothing. She also has bad sweats and anxiety problems. She is on meds for pain and anxiety. We can not get her out of icu cause of an open wound on her arm. Any suggestions on helping her breathe while in ICU?
You really need to be talking with the Doctors and RT's at your hospital, becasue it can be very difficult for us to diagnosis your mother without knowing more about her. With the injuries that you listed she will have a difficult course, a device called a BiPAP can noninvasively ventilate your mother(possibly) instead of the endotracheal tube. The diaghram injury along with possible COPD history along with pulmonary contusions will take time, do not get frustrated about two steps forward and one step back. Please discuss your mothers care with your hospital, they are going to be able to offer much better advice, since they have all the information about her.
The lethargic state (drowsiness, difficulty opening eyes) can all be linked back to the increase in CO2 levels in her blood from the inadequate airmovement. This can happen from time time with patients after extubation, anxiety about having to return the vent is also common. You and your family need to be there as support for your mom and make sure that you are not adding to the anxiety.
Hope your mom improves, I know the course is not always fun when you are dealing with a sick family member.
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