Patient Credits Swedish Hospital Team for Helping Him Overcome Life-Threatening Respiratory Illness
Humboldt Park resident Jeffrey and his partner Carolle have many reasons to be happy in this difficult time. They have a new baby who brightens their days. And after two harrowing weeks in the hospital facing a variety of extremely serious respiratory issues, Jeffrey was recently discharged and is on the road to a full recovery.
Jeffery first sensed there was trouble when new respiratory symptoms made it difficult for him to breathe. After calling the Swedish Hospital COVID-19 Help Line at 773-907-7700, he was referred to a family medicine physician for a telehealth visit.
By video, the doctor observed Jeffrey’s labored breathing and leg edema and knew this was a potentially serious issue for an otherwise healthy and active individual. They immediately arranged for him to be seen in Swedish Hospital’s Emergency Department for further testing.
“She was very proactive and did everything we could have imagined to quickly diagnose and begin to get the proper treatment,” said Jeffrey. “I am also so thankful that we did not postpone care, as every hour counted for me.”
The Emergency Department team confirmed that Jeffrey had a severe case of pneumonia complicated by empyema and abscess of the lung. He was rapidly declining and starting to become septic. He was taken to the operating room and underwent decortication of the right lung with drainage of multiple lung abscesses. Jeffrey remained hospitalized for two weeks, including time in the ICU on a ventilator.
“Jeffrey exhibited remarkable courage and a strong will to live. His regaining of lung function and healing has also been excellent and he is expected to make a full recovery,” said Cardio Thoracic Surgeon Dr. Eias Jweied, who performed the surgery. “I want to commend Jeffrey and Carolle for taking proactive steps to see a doctor even virtually to promptly address concerns as time is often a critical factor in providing the best care for patients. During the COVID-19 crisis, patients still need lifesaving surgeries and we are performing these procedures under comprehensive and enhanced safety protocols.”
“We are so pleased with the doctors, nurses and Emergency Department team who treated Jeffrey,” said Carolle, who is a trained nurse. “To put it simply, they saved his life and thanks to them our new baby will have a father and I will have my partner. I truly believe this would not have been possible without the care of the Swedish team, from the COVID-19 Health Line call, to the ED, floor nurses and doctors who cared for Jeffrey.”
Carolle offers advice for anyone who may have medical issues in today’s environment: “When something is wrong please be proactive and go to a doctor, either in person or via a telehealth appointment. Without that we would not have survived this.”
If you have concerning symptoms, a telehealth appointment offers a great way to visit your doctor in the comfort of your own home to address a variety of issues. We encourage patients to take full advantage of this option with their primary care provider.
The couple is looking forward to the city opening and returning to work. They see a bright future for their baby and feel blessed to be together again at home.
Swedish Hospital and Swedish Medical Group now offer telemedicine video and telephone appointments to provide you with the health care you need from the convenience of your own home.
Telehealth appointments are covered by most insurances and new and existing patients are accepted!
By Bill Ligas | Published May 20, 2020