Back on vent: Hey guys, my dad has had to go back... - ICUsteps


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Back on vent

jld85 profile image

Hey guys, my dad has had to go back on the vent due to being septic. He had been taken off on the 5th of May. In the last week he was diagnosed with hospital acquired pneumonia and a UTI. He went septic today and became unresponsive and blood pressure has dropped. Did anyone else on here go into septic shock? If so, how long did it take to treat it? (I know everyone will be different.) They didn’t say his oxygen had dropped, just that he had shallow breathing. So they had to intubate him again today. The doctor said that he may have to end up with a long-term trach. I know some of you ended up with a trach, but was it long term and what does that mean?

15 Replies

Some people do come home with a trachy but mine was removed after about 3 months just before I stepped down to the ward

Is that what they considered long term?

I don’t think so I have heard of other people who were in longer than me who had their trachy for the duration of their stay. I would think that long term relates to once home and until it is no longer needed! You really need to ask the doctor what they meant!

Oh ok! Will do, thanks for your reply!

Not sure if it is the same thing but I had sepsis when first admitted to hospital, caused by an infection. It caused low blood pressure, diabetes and kidney failure. I was treated in ICU for about 4 weeks, and in the end the infection was cured, the blood pressure returned, the diabetes went. So left with an abnormal kidney function. ( I had to return to ICU with covid...but thats another story)

jld85 profile image
jld85 in reply to Marty29

Oh wow! It’s just so much for the body to deal with and so crazy what the body can return from! He’s already considered diabetic. They’ve been giving him insulin though to keep sugars under control. Would it be considered septic shock since his blood pressure bottomed out? He’s stable now and he’s tried to wake up a couple different times on the ventilator. He even tried to say something to my mom and one time they said he swallowed.

Dont despair. This happened to my dad last year with Covid. He went into septic shock and his BP dropped to 60/40. We were preparing for his passing. He came around! It set him back in that it knocked the crapout of him and took him a good 3 weeks before he had enough strength to wake up and even crack open his eyes for us on facetime. He was trached though by that point but the trach was successfully removed while still in the hospital. Keep the faith:))

jld85 profile image
jld85 in reply to Dbilingual79

Yes, we are definitely holding on. He is stable and they finally got his bp stable. When put on the vent, his o2 sats were fine. He was just breathing shallow and that was from being so unresponsive and having the sepsis I believe. They said he’s not been diagnosed with sepsis yet, but they’re treating him for that bc he checked off on several of the things to diagnose someone with sepsis. I believe it’s that too. He had pneumonia and I believe he’s become septic from that. I just hate he had already been on a vent and had to be reintubated. We had just started hearing his voice a lot louder and more clear than it had been since the first time he was on the vent. He has already lost 100 lbs, which no doubt most of that is muscle mass. It’s going to prolong his pt and even being able to eat anything. Hurts my heart so bad, but we have faith and believe things will be ok!

Yes I went into septic shock - that was at the beginning of my ordeal - with the right antibiotics, I responded very quickly 4-5 days approx. What wasn’t so straightforward was that treatment caused a knock on effect & 57 days later I woke. Obviously, not everyone’s story would mirror mine.

Trachy for me lasted about 2-3weeks. There are people who need more long term trachy

jld85 profile image
jld85 in reply to Sepsur

Oh wow! They said that dad has already been alert. He was alert last night and has been very alert this morning. He was trying to talk over the vent and everything. So that’s a good sign for sure!

jld85 profile image
jld85 in reply to Sepsur

They’re actually, as of now, going to do a trach this Friday for him. Then the doctor said once he heals from that, they’ll slowly start to wean him off of that. Trach is a pretty simple procedure, correct?

The tracheostomy is because its safer, infection wise and for other reasons, to remove the breathing tube and relocate to stoma in the throat if dad is going to be mechanically ventilated for more than a week or so.I awoke after around 4 weeks in a coma (Legionnaires) with one fitted.

They'll paralyse dad because he needs to be absolutely still so as to reduce the risk of the surgeon damaging his larynx/vocal chords.

Mine was removed before I discharged myself (I was mentally very unwell and should not have done this) and I went home with a hole in my throat with a large dressing. Interestingly if the dressing comes away from the skin allowing any air to vent via the stoma then you cannot speak.

I'd be asking for something in a shop or something and this would happen and I'd be jabbering away sounding like some internal mute button had been pressed!

Hope you dad keeps improving.

My best


Oh ok! I think in about an hour they are doing the procedure. I know the doctor said he is doing even better today. No fever, they’ve went down on settings on vent, oxygen is good, and he no longer requires blood pressure meds to keep his bp up. So as of now, things are going in the right direction. It’s just one of a few setbacks we’ve went through, but he’s come right back everytime and I’m thankful! Hopefully it’s a smooth, easy procedure!

It is as routine as anything is routine in an ICU.I hope it went well, much easier for him to tolerate the tube via neck stoma so fingers crossed he keeps on improving.

You often find in intensive care its one step forward, then two back. Or sideways.

It's a roller-coaster in emotions for the loved ones, I was mostly either unconscious or playing with Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds with extra helpings of Fear and Loathing but my poor wife and kids and close family really got put through the ringer.

My thoughts are with you,


Thanks so much, I appreciate it. We actually ran into a problem during the procedure. My dad had been on blood thinners and they thought he was off long enough, well he hasn’t been. So anyway, the dr hit a vessel and it bled more than he felt comfortable with. They did it bedside and he said next time they were going to take him down to the OR to do the procedure. They have a device that can stop bleeding immediately in there, if it were to happen again. I think they may try again tomorrow, so hopefully it goes well!

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