Saturday, August 1, 2009

Saturday Update

It is Saturday evening and I thought it was time to update everyone on dad today. They were able to remove another tube and lessen some medicine that he must be off in order to get out of ICU. Unfortunately, they also had to increase some other medicines such as Potassium and blood pressure medicines.
He was able to stand for a few moments early in the day, and just this evening was able to walk from the chair to the door of his room and back. Needless to say, this greatly exhausted him. He was totally off all oxygen all day, unfortunately this evening his oxygen level is too low and they are going to put him back on oxygen for the evening. Not a ventilator, but oxygen through the nose to help breathing. This could be due to all the "work" they made him do today in walking and standing.
Either way, it was a good day for dad. He was able to take more steps towards leaving ICU. They are very conservative on the weekends due to the fact that the surgeon is not in observing and making decisions.
Please pray that his oxygen levels would go back up over night, his potassium levels would increase so that the heart and kidneys may work properly, and his breathing would be more regulated.
Again, thank you for your prayers. Mom said there were numerous emails recieved today as well and dad greatly enjoyed having them read to him. Pray for mom also as the days are "a lot longer sitting in the waiting room by herself." Pray for her rest and strength.
God is good! I am excited about being back home and at CBT in the morning. There is no place like home! Plus....I haven't preached in about 2 weeks, so hold on!!!
I love you all and thank you for every prayer and word of encouragement!
We serve a Mighty God!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday Evening Post

It is late Friday night, and I and my sisters just got home. I apologize for not being able to update this morning, but was lacking a computer to do so.
Dad had a good day overall. We went in this morning and spoke to his nurse. Dad was sleeping at the time. His nurse said that he had been up most of the night (not unusual for my dad) and had just been to sleep a few hours. We asked her if she felt comfortable with us heading home and she said 'yes.' She then woke dad up because she knew he would want to see us.
He told us he loved us and we kissed his cheek and told him we loved him. It was a difficult, yet relieving good bye. Difficult-because we hated to leave him and mom, especially with him still in the ICU; relieving-in that on a few occasions we thought we would never get to tell dad we love him again on this earth-but God had other plans.
We made the 15 hour drive-calling in and checking with mom as to dad's health every two hours. Here is a summary of his day...
Dad was able to again sit up in a chair. They were able to remove more tubes and wires and take him off a few medicines. There are a few medicines he must be off in order to be able to get out of ICU-one of which is a blood pressure medicine that keeps his blood pressure up. They tried taking him off that medicine today, but shortly thereafter his blood pressure fell to 50/40, so in a scramble they put him back on it. They will watch it, but are not over concerned; explaining it as "his body is just healing and was not ready for that yet, we will try it again tomorrow."
He was able to eat a few solid foods today and worked successfully on his breathing.
Overall, another blessed day.
Dad received nearly 20 more emails today-he already holds the all time record for Hays Medical Center thanks to everyone!
Please pray for dad that he would have another good night tonight and day tomorrow. The doctors feel he may be able to get out of ICU by Sunday, and then would spend 3-5 days in a regular room before going home. Pray for the Lord's will.
Also, please pray for our mom. It was most difficult to leave her there knowing she will spend hours in that same waiting room mostly alone. She plans on staying there until he is moved out of ICU and then will go home for a day or so-only to return to take dad home. Pray for her comfort and protection and health as she is worn from the last 10 days.
We again want to thank Pastor Duncan of Hillcrest for helping out and encouraging in so many ways. Also we want to thank Pastor Lynn Sparkman of the High Plains Baptist Church there in Hays. He and his wife have spent time every day with us and my mom. They invited us to their home for dinner last night, and even was able today to visit with and pray with our father. They and their church have truly shown a Godly love.
I will let you know how tomorrow goes and again thank everyone for their prayers and encouragements!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Thursday Evening Update

Not much more to report other than that dad was back in his bed for the night. He was able to get off the ventilator, sit up in a chair, and cough out much junk from his lungs. He is EXHAUSTED! He is in pain. He is worn from the day. Please pray he would have a restful night and would be able to make more improvements tomorrow.
We are so thankful, but he has a way to go.
Should dad have a good night,and our 8 a.m visit seem well, I, Chrystal, and Rachel will drive towards home tomorrow. Mom will be staying with dad as he will be in ICU for 1 or 2 more days at best. I will let everyone know how things are in the morning.
Again, thank you so much for praying and encouraging the family.

Mid Day Update Thursday

It is just after noon and we visited with dad. The doctor stopped mom and said, "He's doing great. Medically speaking, we are just where he needs to be. It is now time for that tough love we spoke of. He must make himself get better." We then went into the room and found dad sitting up eating a popsicle and drinking broth. He saw my beard I have been "working on" (just not shaving since I've been here), and said, "What is that?!"
He talked to us quite a while (15 min) and said that he knew it was going to be a very painful day, but that "I will do it."
He is coughing up the gunk in his lungs and they are about to start some therapy. He wanted us to make mom go back to the hotel and catch up on some sleep. I asked him if there was anything he wanted us to tell all those reading the blog...
"Thank you so much for the prayers. I don't know what would have happened without them, but please, don't quit praying. I need them now more than ever to get through these next days."
What a blessing it was for us to hear him say these words.
Again, the day will be long and quite painful, but should be a good one. Please continue to pray.
I will close with this for now. Dad told us at two different times, the last being 4:00 a.m. this morning, he got at his worst. His vitals were low and his breathing was so difficult. It was then, at 4:00 a.m., (in the words of dad), "a tall, dark headed man came in the room. He took my hand and said, 'Wayne, you are going to be o.k., the Holy Spirit is with you and will comfort and heal you.'" Dad went on to say, "I was filled with fear at that moment and before on Monday early, and both times, that man came and comforted me."
There were no registered visitors Monday morning or at 4 a.m. this morning...
"Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."
"Nevertheless God, that comforteth those that are cast down, comforted us "
"As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you;"

Thursday Morning Update

It is Thursday morning and we are in "our spot" once again in the ICU waiting room. We are allowed a 15 minute visit every two hours on the even hours. We walked into his room a little bit ago and met the nurse at the door. We asked the same question we have asked for the last 6 days, "Well, how is he doing?" Thus far, the answer has always been the same, "He is doing...O.k." Today, we got a: "Good, he had a good night." That thrilled our hearts. We looked into the room and he looked a little better. There were a few less tubes, but he was still on the ventilator. The nurse then said, "If you will step out a minute, we are going to remove the ventilator." AMEN!
Soon we were back in the room with him and he was off the ventilator. Now, while this is indeed good news, he is in for a very rough day. Every breath he takes reveals the great amount of stuff in his lungs. You just want to cough really hard for him to get it all out. He can't cough right now and his breathing is difficult to say the least. Also, because he is alert and off the ventilator, the pain is excruciating.
Today will be that "rough love day" we heard about earlier. Please pray with us that dad's pain would be less, he would be able to cough and get some stuff out, and his breathing would improve. Their goals for him today is to sit him up, get him to control his breathing, and eventually get him into a chair.
This is the point he was at Sunday before he 'crashed.' I believe this is the reason they kept him on the ventilator longer. They are hoping his body was able to rest and heal more so that he is ready for this battle today with pain.
Because of his past conditions and migraines, his body is accustomed to pain medicines. To give him what he would need to get rid of pain, would be too much that it would slow his breathing. Thus, the reason he is in more pain than most who go through this surgery.
We just ask that you pray his pain would be manageable, these goals would be met, and that our Lord would comfort and guide him in takes steps towards healing today.
Thank you again for all the emails and words of encouragement. Dad cannot believe the quantity of emails sent and was so encouraged by them.
We love you all and I will update this afternoon as to progress made.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Wednesday Night Update

As we end this day, we rejoice in that dad was able to respond to us that one time. Since then, he has remained asleep. There is really not much to report. Dad remains in the same state. He continues to remain on the ventilator. They are "hoping" to wean him off it tomorrow sometime. (We heard that yesterday)
His blood counts remain acceptable, and his color is moderate. We learned today from the doctor, that he remains on the ventilator primarily because of the amount of fluids his body has built up. Apparently, after the second surgery, he gained 42 pounds of fluid that one day. He now is only 18 pounds more than his before surgery weight. This has caused a lot of problems for him.
By far, he is not out of the woods. The best we get from any nurse/doctor is "He is doing...O.K." Please continue to pray for him. The hospital received nearly 50 emails today for my dad. His nurse said, "He must be quite an amazing man."
He has no idea!

Update IV on Dad

It is now 2:30 CST and we were just able to visit with dad.....
He's Awake!!!! Thank you so much for praying for this. Dad was awake...though his eyes did not open. He nodded and responded to questions. He is still on the ventilator, but he looks good and swelling is still down. The doctor should come in this afternoon and decide if he can start coming off the machine. Now, please pray he does. We feel that this is a good possibility due to the way he looks. I told him about all the emails that have been sent and he gave a "thumbs up." He truly appreciated them all.
Pastor Duncan and his wife from their church have been such a blessing. They spent the last two days with us and now, even at Ark City, continue to do things for mom and dad and have been such a blessing. The church here in Hays-High Plains Baptist, have now had three different families stop by and encourage us. I'm so Glad I am a Part of the Family of God!
Dad still needs to improve his kidney output, improve his breathing over the ventilator, and continue to see swelling go down. Obviously, we are encouraged at the fact that he awoke and responded to us. Please continue praying, and I will do my best to let all know what happens this evening.
Emails can be sent to him by going to this link:
We continue to pray and watch with thanksgiving!

Also, I want to thank my mom and sisters for decorating and taking over the ICU waiting room and throwing me a birthday party-cake and all!

Update III on Dad

It is Wednesday morning and we have seen dad. He had a peaceful night, and seemed to rest well. He is pretty much the same this morning. His kidneys did output well overnight and his swelling is down a lot. For this we praise the Lord.
The doctor was not able to take him off the ventilator. He now has been on the ventilator over 50 hours. The doctor does not feel he can make it off the ventilator at this point; but also, he is being conservative. He explained that each time you put in the ventilator tube, the throat swells. Having to put the tube down his throat twice in such a short time has caused much swelling. It would be a major ordeal to have to put the tube in a third time if not impossible. Thus, the doctor is not rushing things.
They will re-evaluate him this afternoon and determine if he can be taken off the machine. Please pray with us that he would be able to come off the ventilator. He has been unresponsive to us since around noon yesterday. We would like for him to respond to us soon. Please pray he would 'wake up' today.
There have been so many encouraging emails sent to dad here at the hospital. It has been a great comfort to read them and share them with the family, and we will be reading them to dad as soon as he wakes up. If you would like to send one, you can go to: and click on 'email a patient'. He is in ICU room 9.
Thank you so much for your prayers and words of encouragement. I will let you know what the doctor says this afternoon.
The Lord comforted my heart this morning in my Bible reading. I read Colossians 4:2 "Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving"
We will attempt by God's grace to do just that!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Update II on my father

Quick update:
We saw my father at 8:00 p.m. and spoke with the doc's assistant. They said he "is doing o.k. We are still going to let him sleep and let the heart continue to rest and heal." Between two open heart surgeries in 48 hours, the heart definitely needs to heal.
He was resting soundly with a blood pressure of 110/60. The kidneys are outputting as of now. The goal is for him to have a peaceful, restful night; and then look to take him off the ventilator sometime tomorrow. He has been on life support/ventilator for 41 hours straight now. They must get him off soon to prevent pnemonia.
His "shading" is somewhat better as they have air pressured wraps on his legs. They did not have to have dialysis today which was a great blessing. Please pray with us tonight that he continues to rest and heal and that his vitals continue to better.
We love you all and praise the Lord for His blessings!

Update on my Father, Wayne Burke

As anyone who might ever reads this blog may notice, there have been no posts for a while. The reasons for that are that I was very busy with day camp at our church 2 weeks ago and Bro. Carr came down with a serious case of shingles and chicken pox. Currently, I am in Kansas with my family due to my father's health. Here is what happened so far:
On Tuesday, July 22, my father drove four hours north to Hays, Kansas to see a cardiologist. My father has grown weaker and weaker the last few weeks and wanted a second and third opinion. After being evaluated, the Dr. decided it was immediately necessary to have a heart bypass surgery. The surgery would take place Friday morning, the 25th.
I and my son Alex left for Kansas on Wednesday and drove the 14 hours to Hays and the Hays Medical Center. On Friday morning at 7:oo my father went into surgery. The surgery lasted nearly 8 hours. The day was one of the longest of my life. Finally, the doctor came out and spoke with my mother and I. My father's condition was much worse than he initially thought and the doctor performed a quadruple bypass surgery, had to burn portions of an enlarged heart, and used a laser to shoot the heart into increasing blood flow. The doctor felt the surgery was a success, but the road to health would be painful but achievable.
On Friday night we were able to see my father, a sight I wished never to see again. His body lied swollen, the life support keeping him breathing, and more tubes and wires than I could count in the short time we were in there. But, the doctor felt all was going according to plan.
On Saturday he lay pretty much the same and the doctors desired to take him off the ventilator and sit up in a chair. Well, we almost made it. That afternoon they were able to take him off the ventilator, but they were not able to sit him up. His body was too weak for any further advances, but he was able to speak to us that he was hurting, but fighting to get better.
On Sunday morning we came and visited Dad and there wasn't much change. Mom and I and Alex went to High Plains Baptist Church and enjoyed a visit with the wonderful folks there at that church. Pastor Ben Lowery preached a wonderful message on the Christian's Rest in the Lord. I also want to thank Pastor Lowery for coming and visiting dad twice and praying with and encouraging us. Bro. Lynn Sparkman from the church also came on Monday and prayed with us. It is so wonderful to be part of the family of God. The bond of love that saints enjoy is one of the many wonderful blessings and privileges of being a child of God. Folks we have not ever met, opened their hearts and homes to us. How we praise and glorify the Lord. By Sunday afternoon, they had did sitting up in a chair hugging his heart pillow. He spoke with us and we enjoyed seeing dad sitting up and conversing with us. When we went back to the hotel that night, I and Alex planned on leaving early Monday morning.
RING! RING! The phone woke all of us up at midnight that night. The nurse wished to inform us that dad was not doing well. They were having to give him blood and his breathing was not right. She said not to come to the hospital, but for us to be aware and able to pray. Well, needless to say, we didn't just drift back off to sleep. After staring at the ceiling for a few hours, I finally drifted off to sleep. It was then the phone rang again. Our hearts sunk. It was 4 a.m. now and the nurse told us that the O.R. Team had been organized and dad was being taken into exploratory surgery immediately. They were losing him and did not know why. We literally ran out the door and to the hospital. We were able to see him just before he went into surgery. He looked bad. His blood pressure was 60/40 and all his vitals down. My sisters were already on their way from Ohio, and mom and I again found ourselves waiting alone in a dark waiting room. We waited for nearly 2 hours, and finally around 6:30 a.m. the surgeon came to see us.
He told us that all the graphs were holding and that there were no clots around the heart. He had no medical reason for dad's failing health. Soon dad was back in ICU again on a ventilator, but this time his vitals were much worse. The doctor said they were going to keep dad sedated all day and let his body rest, and that on Tuesday they would begin taking tubes out and showing him that 'rough love' to get him back sitting up and healing correctly. Around 9:30 that night, my sisters and Ricky arrived. They were able to see dad for the first time, it was a very difficult visit for them. We left and headed towards the hotel and laid down for the night, praying for a peaceful night for dad and us.
The Lord did bless with that peaceful night, and we found ourselves back at the hospital at 7:45 a.m. waiting for our first visit. At 8:00 a.m. we went in to see dad. Dad was still on the ventilator and his condition was the same. The doctor was not pleased with the lack of progress. It was quickly decided that dad would not be taken off the ventilator again today as his body was not able to handle being off it. His kidneys are not functioning correctly. To aid the kidneys and vital organs, he is on medication to restrict most blood flow to the vital organs. As a result, dad is experiencing a lot of "shading" in his extremities. His toes, knees, and fingers are turning purple and yellow. Due to this and diabetes, they may soon have to take him off the medicine so that these problems may be corrected. This, of course, would not benefit the kidneys and other vital organs. There now is talk that because of a great increase of fluids and swelling on the head and chest, dialysis may be necessary. The doctors are watching him closely and will determine that this evening. As for now, we wait and pray.
His blood pressure is up some with medication. His kidney counts are about the same, but not worse. We know the Lord will take care of him.
I will do my best to keep you updated to my father's condition. I, my mother, and sisters wish to thank everyone for their prayers literally from all over the world. There have been phone calls from so many, and we are humbled by the outpouring of love and support. We love you all and thank you for your love in the Lord.
Folks may email dad here at the hospital at: , click on email a patient at the top of the page. He is in ICU room 9. Thank you everyone!