Monday, March 5, 2012

2011 was a BAD year....

2011 was the worst years of our lives. Howard contracted MRSA which led to necrotising faciitis (the "flesh-eating" disease). He was in the hospital for 6 weeks, 4 surgeries (died once), 6 weeks in nursing home, 6 weeks of home health care, lost his job and our insurance, and I had to nurse him back to health. And let me say upfront, I am not a nurse and will never be a nurse. It was agonizing for me to have to take care of his open wounds while he tried to heal up! I don't know how Dr's and nurses do it, Bless them all!

This is what we originally started with. He was cut from about 4 inches above his knee to the top of his thigh and then around on his hip. Approximately 24 inches long in total and it was open a good 10 to 12 inches across. Very overwhelming to have to look at every day for a person who can't stand to see blood!

They had to go in four times and debride the infection off of it and remove a good bit of tissue and muscle. During the 4th operation his blood pressure bottomed out and he passed a clot to his lung and he died on them. Thank GOD, and I did alot of thanking GOD, they got him back and he spent 4 days in ICU. When I went in the ICU to see him, they had 5 of those IV hangers, each with 4 IV's on them all around his bed. I didn't know one person could have so many IV's at one time. They had him on blood thinner for the clot, and a wound vac on his leg, and the wound vac started pumping out his blood, so he ended up getting 16 bags of blood. He was on a respirator and had a feeding tube. It was all vey intense. I went home every night and cryed myself to sleep. The surgery was on a Monday, and then on Thursday I went in and he was sitting up, all his tubes were out and they were ready to take him out to a regular room. He was feeling all better, of course he was on a dilaudin drip for 6 weeks, so he was felling no pain and doesn't remember a thing about any of his hospital stay. Aww, the wonders of modern medicine!

Here are some more pics on the progression of healing. Well, only one pic. I have more on my camera disc, but they don't seem to want to download to my computer right now.

On Monday, March 5, Howie had some more surgey to close up his leg finally. I am so glad not to have to clean out that wound anymore. Right now it has a couple of drains in it that I have to empty every day, but it is so much easier to take care of. He has some awful scars and will have another awful scar when the top is done healing.  Good news is he lost 100 or so pounds! Originally, they removed a big chunk of this thigh and butt muscles, so he has some mobitily problems. He is not very good with steps, and is a little unstable at times. He has to use a cane to keep his balance and is not good with carrying things, or maybe that is just an excuse to keep from carrying in the groceries! lol

Anyway, that is what I have been doing the past year. High stress and not good for my Fibro, depression or diabetes. I am just worthless for doing anything but the necessities. I am just exhausted. Howie is finally on disability retirement with OPERS. We were four months with NO income between his job ending and his disability starting. It was horrible!! By the time we pay his medical insurance out of his monthly $1219 we receive $735 to live on for the month. And I have no income. Social Security denied me for the second time while Howie was in the hospital and I just didn't have the strength to find a lawyer at that time. I need to get back on it though. I just don't see how they can find me not disabled. Really, I can not work a real job! I can not stand for more than a couple minutes and can not walk for any distance without having to sit and rest. Oh well, more on that later.

Just wanted to let everyone know what I have been up to and why I have neglected my blog for so long. Later... 

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