I am home from the hospital now, after 3 days on IV antibiotics. This was quite an ordeal! After my last post my arm became worse and worse, more painful, and visibly infected. My neighbor took one look at it and was so concerned she pleaded that I go to the emergency room. I did go, and within 3 hours the baseball sized abscess was turning black, the tissues were dying. The pain was acute. They did a cat scan to be sure the infection hadn’t gone into the muscle or bone. Once I was admitted to a private room they gave me Morphine for the pain and began a heavy dosing of antibiotic for MRSA, a very serious form of a resistant staph infection. They did blood cultures and tissue samples.
By Wednesday it became evident that the infection was worsening. They would have to open it up. The swelling had become so severe that the lidocaine to numb the area couldn’t be very effective. My screams could probably be heard down the hospital corridors. I felt like I was going to go into shock the pain was so bad. They began giving me Morphine every 2 hours and by morning the bright red bulls eye around the lesion had nearly gone away. The doctors left the wound open to heal, covering it only with light gauze. A neat and smooth scar is not their concern right now. I have to change my dressings at home now and the first time I did it this morning I must admit I had to sit down I got so light headed just looking at it. It looks like I have been to war!
The surgeon agreed that because the chain of lymph nodes near this site had been removed when I had my node biopsy last October, the drainage system for infection has been compromised and that’s possibly why this boil didn’t heal like the others have. Couple that with the many visits I have had to the hospital in the last 9 months, and germs floating around there, and it became a prime site for the dangerous MRSA to grow.
Hospital food is actually very good but I am glad to be home! I slept much better in my own bed last night. I am trying to manage now with Motrin during the day and reserving the narcotics for night time. I will go back for a follow up with the surgeon Next Tuesday.