Friday May 29th 2009: Will "stood"
Today, Will got to "stand" during PT. I was sad to have missed it and therefore have no picture! They strapped him to a table (think Frankenstein) and then tilted the table up. He said it felt kind of good, but also kind of weird & scary. He did get slightly dizzy and drop his blood pressure. Ok pop quiz- remember I mentioned earlier about orthostatic hypotension? Have you ever gone from lying down and then standing up quickly and get a head rush or feel faint? That's what it is. It is caused by gravity-induced blood pooling in the lower extremities. The effect is you do not get sufficient blood flow back up to your brain, so you get dizzy. For you and I this is a rare occurrence, but for someone with a spinal cord injury (SCI) this is very common during the acute period since the nervous system is altered and cannot regulate the blood vessels in the body to "squeeze." This is why you may notice in some of the pictures that Will is wearing ace wraps or white compression stockings on his legs. These sexy things help prevent the blood pooling in his lower body. He also wears a binder around his belly & chest to continue to help with the squeezing of blood up to his head. He actually likes the chest binder because it is helping to splint his broken ribs. We also went to the cafeteria today for lunch. Will gets a "meal ticket" which is good for one entree, two sides, and a drink. Well this being his first time there, he did not know this and proceeded to fill up his tray with A LOT of food. It was really funny- he even had 2 desserts and a side of wings. The cashier said to him, "This must be your first time." (And she let the extra food slide :) The boy can eat! Tomorrow is a very light day and then Sunday is a day off. I am going to run in a local 10k tomorrow and then will ride on Sunday morning with a few girls on the Silver Comet trail which is an old railroad bed that is now paved. It is 60 miles out and goes all the way to Alabama! Next week will be very busy and possibly intense. Tuesday Will goes to see a neuro-opthamologist, Wednesday our folks are flying in, and then Thursday is the big medical conference where his entire team will go over all his injuries and give us more answers.