Doctors, therapy, tests and "are we having fun yet"?
I haven't blog lately as I just was so discouraged with the last therapy session with Larry. He started up with problems in swallowing again this year and the internist sent us on a round of ENT exam, Speech pathologist therapy with a new E-Stim Experia therapy, and lastly, the barium swallow test.
Larry went to two therapists after the ENT exam. The one he had last year gave him an eval and then 2 sessions and then told us she was moving to Denver with her family. She recommended another therapist in the same office as the ENT. We saw her and she gave us the option of seeing her or going to the specialized E Stim therapy. She even asked Larry what he thought (as if he knew which way to turn). Anyway, we went to the new therapist with the Experia machine (which gives more stimulation). We had several sessions twice a week. She wanted us to come 3 X a week but I said that would be difficult. It was a 30 min drive there, and then driving throught this nightmare garage to the upper level. This place was not handicap friendly as the doors were double and did not open automatically. The handicap places were (3) next to the door and 3 on next level down. The last time we went, all were taken up.
Meggan did her best to help Larry stengthen his throat muscles. Lots of swallowing and swallowing exercises. Larry was exhausted after this. The barium swallow test was yesterday and we were to be there at 9. We got there at 9:05 and waited 40 minutes. The therapist was behind and I felt she rushed through the test. If not for me asking questions, we would have been excused right after the test. This was not the way it was done before. She gave her report to the therapist Larry works with. The bottom line is that Larry still has to be on the soft mechanical diet and thickeners in his milk. He just needs to motivate himself more to eat. It's the most intense therapy we have had and one of the most crucial, as I don't want him to aspirate or choke. The swallowing problem is something that came up two years after his stroke and no one knows why. He does eat but not enough. I am at my wits end to know how else to help him. It is so frustrating. We see his Dr. at the end of the month and the nuero at the end of next month.
The weather has been great lately but starting to get back to the old hot and humid St. Louis weather.