I'll preface this by saying I'm sorry for starting a new thread, but it's nearly 1 am, I am exhausted, and I don't feel like searching through several pages to find my last thread.
Anyway, as many of you may or may not know, I went to see my PCP on thursday because my incision wasn't feeling/looking right. He cultured it and said he felt it was infected, so he started me on Clindamycin. Friday comes around and I felt fine, except for my back pain. I went to work from 6pm to midnight and still felt great. Came home, ate dinner, and watched some TV. I had a little diarrhea, but I figured it was from the antibiotic, since I had been on it for a little over 24 hours. I went to bed at 3am and woke up abruptly at 4:15am feeling like I was going to vomit and have diarrhea. I dry heaved but mainly had diarrhea. I got up and suddenly felt numbness and tingling throughout my arms and legs. I managed to make it back to bed and decided I'd try to sleep it off. Well, I suddenly started shaking uncontrollably and had chills. I knew something wasn't right. I woke DH up and he handed me his phone. I was going to call 911 but decided to call my doctor first. The NS on call basically blew me off, so I called my PCP and they said to go directly over to the ER.
I get to the ER and I was in bad shape. I couldn't walk, I was still shaking, and I felt terrible. They triaged me right away and brought me back. I was running a fever, my heart rate was very high, and I was in a lot of pain. They did the usual blood work and my white blood cell count was high. They did blood cultures but initially they were concerned about a pulmonary embolism, due to my heart rate being high and the fever. They did a CT scan and ruled that out, so then they were worried about infection. They contacted my NS at UPenn and basically told him they were concerned I was septic. He wanted me transferred to UPenn. They were going to airlift me, but they ended up sending me by ambulance. I was brought to the neuro-surgical ICU at first, and I was greeted by a lot of nurses and doctors. They hooked me up to the monitors, drew blood, put IV's in, etc. It was pretty overwhelming.
After a few hours they determined my condition wasn't as critical as the ER at my local hospital made it sound, so they transferred me to the thoracic surgery unit, which is basically a step-down unit. I was still on the monitors and they were watching me pretty closely. They drew lots of blood and kept looking at the incision, but in the end, they felt there was no infection. I even called my PCP's office yesterday morning, and the girl called me back and said it was negative and that no bacteria grew. Phew!
While I was there they addressed the left-sided pain a little bit. The doctor looked over my films and feels T7-8 is acting up, but he's hoping it'll resolve on it's own. He wants me to try another ESI. I had a terrible experience with the other ones I had done, but I'm in so much pain I'm willing to do anything. They fitted me for a back brace for comfort, but the brace doesn't help at all. I've worn it all day today, and I've still been in massive pain. They also started me on Neurontin 300 mg three times per day, so I'm praying that between the Neurontin and the ESI, I will start to experience some relief. The doctor said lets give it a couple of months and see what happens. If I'm still in this much pain, we'll talk about surgery again. Fingers crossed that doesn't happen! I'm just in so much pain, I need SOME kind of relief and FAST!
So, I called my PM doc's office and the soonest they can get me in is the 30th. I broke down crying as soon as I got off the phone with them. I called my NS office and spoke with his NP. I cried to her and she said they can call and see if they can get me in sooner. If not, she said they'll help me find someone else who can get me in sooner.
I think that's about it. Sorry this is so long. It's been a crazy couple of days. I was discharged from the hospital yesterday afternoon, and crazy me decided to still go to work last night. It was only a 5-hour shift, and we really need the money. That 5-hour shift is about $200 for us, and we could use as much as we can get right now. So, I dug deep and found an inner strength I didn't even know I had, and I made it through. It was actually a really fun night at work anyway.