May 21, 2009
OK .. so I was "supposed" to have MRSA and taking Clindamycin for the past 2+ weeks and that, along with the I&D procedures (Incision & Drainage) to the abscesses, should be done, better, over, and well.
Of the 4 areas, the middle one is healed, the bottom one is draining a little and has a knot forming underneath it, the top one is draining a lot and has a large knot forming underneath and around it and the one on my hip fills and then about every 3 days it drains. Sorry .. there is no prettier way to describe it.
Since I was supposed to be better .. I kept telling myself and willing myself to BE BETTER! Mind over matter .. isn't that what they say? Anyway, tonight I got a call from the nicest doctor I saw at the ER. He was the one who opened the top and bottom ones and aspirated the one on my hip and said .. "This is infection; I'm sending it for culture." Well, he did and when the preliminary report came back he ordered a longer incubation period. And .. voila .. we now have a formal diagnosis of what we are dealing with .. it is "Nocardia".
Now I hadn't heard of it and it appears they are reading up on it as well. He answered my questions and offered to print off medical literature for me as well. He feels this may have been present since my initial surgery over a year ago .. which happens to totally Agree with My complaints all along. It is a bacteria that requires a 3-6 month course of antibiotics -- Bactrim. (After my research .. it appears 6 months minimum to a year - another question for the doctor.) The fact that the abscesses appear to be forming again is not surprising as he explained they would continue to do so until I am treated with the correct antibiotic.
The Bactrim will be started tomorrow and we will keep an eye on the 3 areas I described as they may indeed have to be I&D'd again. The antibiotic will help clear the bacteria but the only way to heal an abscess that has formed is to lance it and open it. Well, at least it explains why I still don't feel well .. and it is not in my head .. and it is not because I haven't followed protocol.
One lesson to be learned is persistence .. we each know our bodies best and know when things are not right. We just have to cross the hurdle to get others to understand and believe we know what we are talking about.
I have a HUGE THANK YOU to this kind and caring doctor who treated me patiently and explained the procedures, answered my questions, did his homework, went the extra step and talked to me twice tonight since I didn't quite have all my thoughts organized when I first heard this news.
This information has been conveyed to Mikki (my daughter) so she can inform Kalista's doctors. It poses the same risks to immunocompromised patients so Kalista's health comes first and it may be some time before I can see them ... a small price to pay for her to be in remission and as healthy as she can be fighting the leukemia.
Taking a pain pill and heading off to bed .. planning to post tomorrow and/or the next day and get us all rolling on this weight loss thing. So very anxious to join you all again!
And .. SOME BIG NEWSSSSSS ... MedHelp will be rolling out a new Food Tracker very very soon!!!! Am SOOOOO EXCITEDDDDDD .. so we ALL need to GET ON BOARD in the next few weeks and work together!!!! Share more details soon!
Love and HUGGGSSSS .. Ranae
PS - Here's some additional information on Nocardia .. so those interested in "what" it is don't have to go look it up.
INFORMATION ON NOCARDIA - The various species of Nocardia are pathogenic bacteria with low virulence; therefore clinically significant disease most frequently occurs as an opportunistic infection in those with a weak immune system, such as small children, the elderly, and the immunocompromised.
Nocardia may also cause a variety of cutaneous infections such as actinomycetoma (especially Nocardia brasiliensis), lymphocutaneous disease, cellulitis and subcutaneous abscesses.
Antibiotic therapy with a sulfonamide, most commonly trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, is the treatment of choice.
Antibiotic therapy is continued for six months (in immunocompetent people) to a year (in immunosuppression), and may need to be continued indefinitely. Proper wound care is also critical.