Just a short bullet-point update tonight:
· During the surgery on Friday the doctors took a sample of the islets and had a culture done. That culture showed yeast, which apparently happens about 50% of the time. That is the likely culprit for the elevated white cell count. Ben isn't having any visible symptoms of an infection (no fever, fluid in drain is clear, etc.). They put him on antibiotics to treat the infection, and it should not delay his release from the hospital.
· They started Ben on a breathing therapy once every four hours. They just put an oxygen mask over his face, and he breathes a medicated steam. This is just another safety measure. Ben doesn't mind it at all, in fact he seems to like it.
· Ben went for several very long walks today, including one epic walk all the way down to the staff cafeteria on the second floor, where he picked out some of his favorite red Gatorade to drink. He also noticed some fries there and got very excited. We told him he needed to have permission from the doctor before he could eat any food, and that we would start with a little bit of a cereal bar. He spent a solid ten minutes sitting and watching the corner of the cafeteria that had the french fries, plotting a way to get his hands on them. I take this as a positive sign.
· The doctor says we are still on track for Ben leaving the hospital on Sunday. The tentative plan is to break up the drive and go as far as Columbus, GA on Sunday, stay the night there, and then drive the rest of the way home on Monday. We are all counting the days until we can sleep in our own beds. For my part, I miss my wife and my dog. I don't know how to sleep right without both of them crowding me off of the bed. Five more days.