Friday, January 8, 2010

Cellulitis and MRSA

Not pleasant subjects, in fact it can be a deadly subject as I and my housemate Jim have learned.

The first week has been certainly a different one for us. New Years night I took him to the ER at the WaKeeney KS hospital because his left toes looked absolutely gross. I mean gross, seeping, swollen, crusty, touch the skin and it was falling off. (I won't print any pictures) The ER doctor admitted him to the hospital, in fact as I write this he is still in the hospital.

Jim has had chronic fungus foot problems off and on since we came back from our trip to Texas back in the fall of '08. He has also had problems with the ingrown toenail on his left foot off and on for most of his life. It's not given him very much trouble until this year. And, the fungus and bacteria ganged up together and gave him cellulitis/CA-MRSA : Community-Assisted Methicillan Resistant Staph Aureus. Okay, I cringed at the word Staph too, as well as one should - it's nothing to mess around with and can kill you. And, that's what he was facing if we had waited even a few hours longer to go to ER.

He never had a fever or any pain, just a gross looking foot. The part that scared me, besides the gross looking foot, was how the redness from his big toe was creeping up towards his ankle at a pretty noticeable rate. I knew that wasn't good so told, I mean TOLD him we were going to ER.

He has been responding to the bacteria meds good, the fungus meds he's having trouble with as we learned prior to his entering the hospital, that he is allergic to them. Think they found something and will learn this afternoon when I visit, if the med is working. He can't come home until he is totally off the meds in his IV's and can finish out the medicine treatment taking pills. He also has been getting whirlpool treatments to soften the dead skin up so it can be peeled off.

Meanwhile at home have been cleaning and cleaning and cleaning. It smells like bleach in the house! There is definitely some habits that will have to be changed and new ones learned as the possibility of carrying this the rest of his life is there. Every cut and scratch will need to be scrutinized and cleaned and sanitized until he tests clear of the fungus and bacteria boogers.

His hip surgery, I am sure, will be put off for awhile until he tests clear as I am sure the surgeon is not going to want the staph germ around anywhere. We have an appointment later this month with him to see what he wants to do. And, Jim's bladder infection that he had early in December is gone (that's what delayed the surgery the first time). He's had just so much happen in the last month, but has had pretty good spirits all through this.

Last nite the front outside thermometer read -1 degrees and the backyard outside thermometer read -3 at 4:30 this morning. It has been colder this winter than we've had in past 20 years. Seems like it's doing this to a lot of folks all around the country, even down south of here. Did Al Gore say "global warming" one too many times?

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