Support for Arthur
Arthur is 24, was working at the Deli at Cub Crystal, and living at home with his twin brother, Tristan, and Mom and Dad, Lou Hoffman and Martin Quam.
In early October he became ill with painful joints and a series of infections, which had us in and out of urgent care, the ER and the hospital.
On Thursday, October27 he was admitted to North Memorial Hospital in Robbinsdae, MN. The doctors were scratching their heads and conferring with other Doctors acroos the country. By Sunday they had it down to auto-immune vasculitis, which is serious enough and rare enough to be concerned about. He has several skin lesions which are going to require skin graphs, eye damage that will require glasses and may require surgery in the future, kidney issues and more.
If that isn't enough, the vasculitis caused a small stroke. Luckily I was there when it happened and was able to call in the nurse. I can't tell you how horrible it was to listen to the doctor askinging him questions and Arthur's voice going softer and more slurred, and the only thing I could do was wait for Martin and Tristan and think, "I'm listening to my son die."
After emergency surgery he spent 5 days in the ER for Brain Trauma. Not a fun place, everyone there had a sad, sad story. He was then transferred to the Brain Trauma care level, and then to Rehab on 11/15.
He is now home and his recovery proceeds apace. But we are in need for some financial help. We have insurance provided by Martin's work, and Arthur has been placed on state insurance. But there is a LOT that isn't covered, or may be reimbursed, later. Co-pays, equipment (walker, shower seat, grab bars), taxis, (buses when the weather gets better), even new clothes! He dropped about 70 pounds and 3 sizes and all his old clothes simply fall off of him.
So we are asking for help. We were barely squeaking by before this and now we are deep into a Minnesota winter with heating bills and all that, with no extras.
I know all too well what it's like to be broke and not being able to help, but I've always donated where I can. If you can't donate this time, I understand. But if you can donate, even 5 bucks, we will all be so grateful.
I apologize for not updating for so long! I personally have been plagued with health issues since early this year and have been hospitalised twice, so I've been behind on everything! Arthur is doing well physically. He has pretty well recovered from the stroke but is still working on regaining his strength and endurance. His hair has grown in, but it seems finer than before and also sticks up in new and interesting ways. He will be going back to work soon, which is great because he is bored and needs money. Arthur is on Prednisone and azathioprine for his vasculitis and having no problems except the prednisone has made him puffy. His stroke has given him eye problems and his last visit to the specialist results that we cannot better it without eye surgery. So that will be next up. The bills have all shaken down and the remaining debt is just under $5000. Many thanks to all who have contributed!
Thank you for all those people that have helped my younger brother. He is a strong young man that has came along way.
Arthur update, 2/2/17 It's been a long time since I updated this information, sorry! Arthur has been home for three months now and there have been lots of changes, mostly for the better. When Arthur came home he was dependent on his walker. No more! He occasionally uses it outside when the snow and ice is bad, but otherwise he is walking quite well. He is back upstairs in his bedroom because while he has to take the stairs slowly, he is stable on them. He still has some dizziness when changing positions quickly, but it has improved since he got his prism glasses. The double vision and blurriness is much improved, though not gone. That will take a long time, and may not go away 100%. Our most frequent outing is to doctor and therapy appointments. We see a general doctor, a rheumatologist, a neurologist, a nephrologist, a rehab specialist, rehab therapists, and a wound specialist. Most of these is to make sure the healing process is going in the right direction. Everything associated with the stroke is proceeding well, but more worrisome now is the underlying cause of the stroke, his vasculitis. Vasculitis is a very tricky, complicated disease with many different causes. Like Crohn's and rheumatoid arthritis, Arthur's is an autoimmune disease. Most forms of auto immune vasculitis do not cause problems in the brain, but in the kidneys and heart, or in the hands and feet. Arthur had trouble with his hands and feet, and his kidneys, but not his heart, and, of course, it caused his stroke. We will be working to get and keep his vasculitis in remission. So far, so good, but besides recovering from the stroke, he is also being treated by a wound specialist for several lesions caused by the vasculitis. The first two lesions were on the top of his feet where he had abrasions from the slippers he wore from before he was hospitalized. First they turned black and the scabs did not come off until after he was home. One was fairly small but the other had tunneled down so far you could see his tendon. He also had one on his arm where an IV in the hospital infiltrated and that one also had tunneled down into his arm quite deep. We have to change the dressings daily. It's pretty gross. We see the rehab specialist later today and we anticipate being released from rehab in a couple weeks and go to a gym for endurance and strength training. YMCA, here we come! We are still looking at months of recovery from the stroke and treating the vasculitis, and my greatest fear is continuing problems with the vasculitis. All this could happen again. Deep thanks to all who have reached out to us and supported Arthur and our entire family during this tough time. So many people have given us rides, brought treats and fun stuff to the hospital, donated money, lent us equipment. We are truly fortunate to have such wonderful friends and family!