Monday, October 5, 2009

Moaning and groaning.

The emergency room.

So there he is, minding his own business, vacuuming.

Next thing I know Mike's laying on the bed in fetal position gasping, "There's something bad going on inside of me," and moaning. Moaning and groaning.

He wants to shower. Less than a minute later he's lying on the bathroom floor. In fetal position. Moaning.

He'd been sick earlier in the week with an upset stomach and other gastro-intestinal symptoms.
The moaning continues.

We decide a trip to the emergency room is in order. He heads for the truck. I scramble to find my shoes, purse, and car keys. I'm 30 seconds behind him. Next thing I know he's laying in the driveway. Moaning and clutching his abdomen.

We head down the hill with him alternating between telling me to hurry and telling me to quit driving so crazy. Laying in the backseat, every turn jars him and increases the throbbing pain.

We arrive at the E.R. with my shoes still sitting in the passenger seat. Hunched over he stumbles into the waiting room, still moaning. They grab him, rush him to a bed, and begin trying to hit a vein to place a catheter. He ran 10 miles that morning so he's dehydrated and they need a port to be able to give him pain medication.

The nurse asks on a scale from one to ten what level is your pain. "TEN!"

From the second we walked in, the doctors and nurses were suspecting kidney stones.

A CT scan confirmed the diagnosis. He had a kidney stone the size of a tomato seed lodged at the junction between his ureter and his bladder. (The ureters connect the kidneys to the bladder, the urethra connects the bladder to the outside world.)

For the next six hours Nadine is his new best friend. She has the morphine.
Finally, sweet relief. At least the pain level is now a "seven".

We are given a few options. One involves running a tube up the "channel" (the doctor's words) and placing a stent to provide an opening to let the backed up urine flow into the bladder. The other option involves running a basket up the "channel" and retrieving the offending stone. Hmmm.... not wanting anything in his "channel" we take option three: loading up on intravenous fluids, to see if we can flush the thing out, and Flomax to help the smooth muscle of the ureter to relax it's grasp on the stone. And a request to keep the morphine handy.

Thankfully, with the pain somewhat controlled---now at level 5---he was sent "upstairs" to the regular part of the hospital.

The plan worked. He made it through the night with only two more shots of morphine. In the morning, the pain level was about a two.

Apparently, the ureter had spit the stone into Mike's bladder.

The doctor sent him home with a paper filter that resembled a snowcone cup, and instructions to strain his urine and watch for the stone.

Sure enough, on Sunday evening Mike became the proud owner of a dark-brown-tomato-seed sized kidney stone.

Mike does not want to repeat this experience. Ever.


  1. this post just made me happy i only have to give birth in the next few weeks. it will be lots more pleasant than a kidney stone. hope bishop is feeling okay now!

  2. mmmm... this post makes me hurt. Bishop, I understand why you didn't call me back. :)

    Sis. D, Britt and I didn't realize that you had such a gift for making painful events sound so hilarious. You're a gas!

    We love you guys and hope no more stones roll your way.

  3. Super funny, Ma. I just knew at some point this story would be hilarious. Who knew it would be so soon? ... Not sure if Dad thinks it was a knee-slapper or not... But maybe if he reads your blog he'll see his little adventure in a new light. LOVE YA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Oh my! What a story. I'm going to go tell Rob. I'm glad Bishop is doing better and that the "channel" was spared. :) Wish we could have been there with you since you've been at the hospital so many times with us. I sure miss seeing you every week. Sigh. Alexander is doing great -- almost 4 months now and sleeping through the night (8 p.m. to 5 a.m.).

  5. Kidney stones along with the whole family of urinary tract infections is DEFINITELY something I'm going to be talking to the man upstairs about. I mean, really? Why? What is the purpose? What does it teach us? Seriously....that has got to be one of the worst experiences ever. On to recovery! Please tell me you threw that thing away. :)

  6. I agree Morphine is great stuff when needed! I have had at least 40 ops and it makes life sooo much easier to deal with plus you heal faster and can communicate better when you aren't at level 10!
    Best Wishes!

  7. so you've got more adventures in your five (or was it 6) posts thus far than I have on my whole blog! Plus, you're a great storyteller so it's fun to read! Thanks for the link.

  8. Oh no! I've heard those really are worse than childbirth. I hope Bishop is feeling better. Poor guy. It's good he had you to help him choose the correct course of treatment :) We miss you both! (I LOVE reading your blog.) -Brooke & Troy

  9. Boy, it seams like we are all doing a lot of waiting these days. You're waiting to hear about baby wilk and I'm waiting to see a fun blog post about the senior games that the Dicous rocked. So, basically I'm requesting a blog post from you. Can I do that?

  10. WoW! Im so glad Uncle Mike is OK, I can't believe that something so small causes so much pain.

  11. That's why he didn't want to play golf on the 6th! He left that part out of his excuse. Thank goodness for morphine, though.

  12. We just found your blog and what a fitting post to read first.