Well, they went in yesterday to take a look at his heart and what they found is not good. Apparently 2 chambers are more than 90% blocked and another is more than 75% blocked. This means he MUST have bypass surgery and very soon. The problems is that the doctor had planned on taking his entire lung (it's large cell carcinoma) and to do that, the patient must lay on his side and they take it out that way. But because he has to now have triple bypass, they are trying to figure out the best way to go about doing as much as they can all at once. He won't survive 2 seperate surgeries back to back.
He is coming home to day and will be pretty much on bed rest. The thorasic surgeon is now trying to have a planning meeting with 6 other doctors to figure out the best way to help him. The tentative plan is to go in and do the bypass (because they can't wait on that one). IF he makes it thru that alright, then while they have his chest open, they will go in and remove as much of the cancerous lung as they can. His main concern is getting the cancer out, right now. When he is strong enough, he wants to go back in and remove the rest of the lung at a later date. For right now, they are pretty much ignoring the spot on his throat. According to the surgeon, 1) they don't even know exactly what that is right now, 2) dad isn't strong enough to make it thru even exploratory surgery to find out or remove it, and 3) his heart and lung are of much greater concern at the moment.
Right now they are looking at next Monday for the surgery, but we don't know for sure. Everything is up in the air until the surgeon can meet with everyone. He told us he hasn't done this type of double surgery in almost 8 years (apparently it's pretty rare and extremely complicated), so he wants an entire team of experts in place. I'm glad he is taking his time and looking at all the possibilities, but waiting sucks.
Rick is a wreck. Drew is handling it fairly well so far and we still haven't told Ally anything concrete, This is going to devestate her. She has a special bond with Papa that the other kids don't and frankly, I'm scared to tell her.
I remember when my dad had triple bypass a few years ago. The big difference is my dad's was caused by his radiation treatments (not heart attacks or heart disease), and he was in fantastic health and just turned 60. Rick's dad has multiple health problems, he's 72 years old, has had 2 previous heart attacks (1 of which the family JUST found out about), has heart disease, high blood pressure and out of control diabetes. I know how hard it was for my dad to recover - I was the one who went and took care of him while my mom went back to work. I saw how hard it was for him, how painful. I'm not sure Rick's dad will make it. And even if he does, I seriously don't think he will ever be the same and he will hate not being able to live as he likes.
I'm trying to be strong for Rick and the kids, but man it's hard! I'm scared, worried, and frustrated because there is nothing I can do to help him. I love that old fart and I swear if he doesn't get thru this I'm gonna be seriously pissed at him! I think alot of what Rick and his siblings are dealing with right now is anger that their dad didn't take better care of himself. But you know what? He lived his life exactly as he wanted, so you have to respect that. But we don't have to like it tho, not even a little bit. I'm just not sure how to help Rick thru this (and the kids when they finally get the whole story).