Received the following email from Ben's brother this morning. I had asked the GI doctor to call Ben's brother. Here is the email:
dr. schlussel phoned me on my cell around 8 p.m. he was very friendly and we talked for about 20 minutes. he said the liver may partially regenerate in time, and asked how long since ben had a drink, and what was his intake on average the last year or two. they may inject some dye into the intestinal tract to see if it passes through or is blocked. he emphasized that a big danger is simply the prolonged time in the hospital--the possibility of picking up bugs, infection, etc. he said ben's lungs are not in good shape--the fact that he didn't smoke doesn't mean his lungs will automatically be healthy. i stressed that the physical therapy needs to be pushed, and he said he would do what he could. he's going out of town soon for a few days, but will be called on to consult when he returns. says there are no signs ben has cancer or anything like that. seemed to indicate that he has seen people with multiple problems like ben's before; some of them made it, some of them didn't. they're trying to build ben up with more nutrition. in general, he didn't add a lot to what we already knew, but he wasn't discouraging, had more of a wait-and-see attitude.