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Tread Lightly

So here I am, minding my own business, when my mother brings her pooches over for a playdate with my two. No worries, I enjoy the sounds of rambunctious dropkick dogs scrambling around on hardwood floors. My mother brings one of hers over to my left side to say hello when my Yorkie jumps up on my right side and does a skidding slide across my abdomen and into my PEG tube.

POP!
gurgle gurgle gurgle

Mom and wife were talking and didn’t take notice that this was a serious situation. Since I was not on the computer it took me a few moments to mouth what had happened. When my wife turned back the sheet the tube tumbled out. Now I have gastric goodies and some blood dripping down my side. To their credit neither of them fainted. I am lying there, angry, mentally adding up the cost of transportation and other out-of-pocket for replacement at the hospital.

Luckily we reached my doctor on his cellphone, rescuing him temporarily from gardening chores. He explained that the tube was held in place by a balloon on the end which had become semi-deflated and that we should just push it back in. Having already tried that with no success but much pain we were afraid it had started to heal closed in the 45 minutes it took to reach the doctor (a reality for tracheotomy). When we said that, his response was, “Did ya lube it first?”

A few globs of medical lubricant left over from a previous trache inspection procedure (tube down nose with camera; trying to forget) and it slips right back into my new second mouth. No worse for wear.

Important note: Tread lightly on the PEG.

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