My husband is 71 yrs old and just spent 4 mos. in the hospital. He had a slight heart problem 2yrs ago and the put in stints and after 1yr the Cardiologist said see him in a year and all is well. My husband has sever rumitoid arthritis for the past 15yrs.; on steroids and rimicade monthly till in September his rheumatologist put him on a new drug; 4hr. by IV every 6 months and they monitored him very closely. After the first round the Dr. was concerned that he had very low white cell count and was very anemic. 2wks later he woke at 7am and said he did not feel right, so I took his bp and it was off the chart. Ambulance took him to hospital and after a month of testing they sent him to a oncologist at Levine Hospital, could find nothing but all symptoms came back a low white count; low red count and anemic, still could not find any cancer; biopsy, liver, kidney, bone scan, every scan, blood test came up with no cancer, but they could not explain why nothing came up in all the test and months in the hospital. He became weak and lost 45lbs.in a short period of time. Dr.Patt the oncologist is top in field, called us in and said he had a 7am meeting with 7 specialist at Levine Cancer Inst. in Charlotte, NC and all puzzled and had no answers. So, they sent him to rehab to build his system up and after 10wks. sent him home, he lasted 12hrs. and was rushed back to the hospital, different hospital, Dr. on call, said we have to get him into emergency surgery right away; I said that Dr. Patt said that he wanted to try to stop the steroids from decenegrating his spine by putting screws and rods to secure his spine. He noted in the test that his vertebra where showing areas that where dying and brittle, but because he was so weak he would die on the operating table. New Dr. said if he did not have the surgery within 24hrs he would risk being paralyzed from the neck down. Dr. Patt was contacted and forwarded the X-rays and agreed. The very next day he went into 9hr surgery to get the brittle dead bone out of his spine and to shore up as much as they could. Dr. Patt was very excited how well he did and anticipated he would be in rehab for 6wks and be home and with a lot of work could lead a very normal life. 1wk in rehab he got pneumonia, 105 fever and lungs full. He lay in ICU for a week and they decided it was not pneumonia, his white count was down as was the red; they gave him 2pts of blood and he was put in a hospital room. Was feeling better and we had counted on him coming home for Christmas but on Christmas Eve he spiked a fever of 105 degree and his Oxygen level dropped to 45, back to ICU. After 2 more weeks, they sent him home with Home Health, .......He has oxygen round the clock and can not walk, so weak. After 50yrs of marriage, I am now his caregiver. I have no answers. The Dr. who assisted in the surgery removed the stiches before sending him home, he has 4 2" cuts down his spine where the removed the dead bone and put screws in his spine for support. I asked the Dr. is he going to die, has everyone given up on him, """What??, "answer was he is weak and has a lot against him, but he is a fighter" He should be able to walk with a lot of work said the home therapist.
I am so lost, I do not know if I should take him to Mayo Clinic, if they would even take him. After all these years, we both are looking forward to retiring and traveling, never did we think we would be faced with this horrible battle of WHAT!!! Please advise.