I am just back from the hospital. It's been a steady day for Dad. The doctors are still working on clearing up the lung infection. They had an infectious disease specialist check him out today. He didn't find anything new but he did add a different antibiotic to the several that Dad is getting. They are giving him insulin with his fluid drip to help keep his blood sugar levels under better control. That seems to be working well.
This afternoon the nurse had been lowering Dad's sedation level a tiny bit at a time. He said that he tended to start breathing too fast when they tried that the previous couple of days and when that happens they have to up the sedation to ensure the rapid breathing doesn't cause problems. I was able to talk to Dad tonight. He opened his eyes for me when he heard my voice but he wasn't able to give me firm yes or no indications to questions I asked. I told him about things going on with family and I held his hand for a while. The last couple of times I visited him, he was too sedated or sleepy to respond to me.
The nurse said on Monday they did a "sedation vacation" which is where they stopped the sedation altogether to see how the patient responds. He said they didn't try that today. Overall, Dad's vital signs are still doing good. They are giving him a little more oxygen in the air he breathes and they are keeping a little more constant pressure in his lungs. That helps keep his lungs open while he fights the pneumonia.
They had a TV going along with the radio when I got there so I stopped the TV and turned up the radio a bit so he could hear it more easily. Dad wasn't ever much a fan of TV and I don't think he appreciates game shows and commercials very much. I tried to get the classical music station going but I can't get good enough reception in his current room so I left the talk radio going. The nurse said they like to keep something like that going so a patient has an idea of what time it is as they drift between wakefulness and sleep.
Hopefully Dad's lungs will get better so we can start getting him off the ventilator and the drugs that go with that. I was glad that he knew I was there.
Mom is still doing OK. She's looking forward to visiting Carla for a few weeks around Thanksgiving. She keeps a schedule that would feel busy enough to me.