Phyllis Marcotte

My story began in August of 2006, I had a canvas business in beautiful northern Minnesota, town of Grand Rapids. The last week of July I had flu like symptoms,like the chills, I just didn't feel to good. My friend Orrin said I should go to the doctor but I told him that I'd be ok. But then my right shoulder started to hurt. I thought I had pulled a muscle putting a canvas over a boat. But no, it got worse. Again Orrin said "you better go to get that checked out". And that's where my story begins. Aug. 1st He had to help me out of bed. He had called my sister, a nurse of 52 years, and she had also told me to get to the doctor because she also thought something was seriously wrong. Orrin had made me an appointment that same exact day. As soon as we got to the clinic I was so week they had to get me into a wheelchair. then from there i was admitted. The doctor and Orrin said that if i wouldn't have came in when i did I wouldn't be writing this story. Honestly I don't remember much after that. What i did remember was that my family and Orrin being there. But little did I know, they didn't expect me to live through this. Two or three weeks later I came out of the drug induced coma. and that's when they had told me that I had NF(necrotizing Fasciitis) I remember waking up to the the worst smell. Rotten, Like road kill. It was the rotted tissue from the infection on my back. another time I had smelled bleach, it was the dacon solution they used on my wound. I thought to myself later that day, just lying there, isn't it nice they washed my sheets?!? They had to have change my bed many times a day because of the drainage from my back. I had two of the best surgeons, they were extremely nice to me. Dr. Custer and Dr. Kole. They were wonderful. All the hospital staff were such sweethearts, they spoiled me terribly. I had an incision that was 31 1/2 inches. opened up, it looked like hamburger. NF had taken my right side, boundary to boundary. When i went home for a short while, after 36 days in the hospital and 35 surgeries, My sister took good care of me. She Dressed me and did all kinds of nice things for me. honestly, I don't know what I would have done with out her there by my side. Then when I went back to have surgery again, they stitched up what they could and applied a wound vacc The wonderful home health nurses and my sister did the dressing changes. It was very painful when they pulled the black foam off. The pain was about a 15 on the scale of 1 to 10, Even the sweet nurses had tears because they saw that i was in so much pain. but the pain only lasted about ten minutes. This went on for 3 times a week from October to the middle of December. It was healed up enough for skin graphing. In October I had to get rid of my beautiful home and business because I could no longer work. I had left my friends and moved to the little town of Sleepy Eye in southern minnesota. I lived with my sister until mid January, then I moved into an apartment. I have a huge hernia because of the stomach wall being weakened by the infection. September of 2007, I was taking hyperbaric treatments in minneapolis, mn for a ulcer on my big toe on my left foot. but then i got an infection on my little toe, Sure enough it was N.F. Here we go again, Back to surgery. they amputated my little toe. The wound was healing, so we thought. On my 64th birthday I went in with another infection. They discovered bone infection in the toe next to the one they took off. i went Back to surgery on March 8th, 2008 In New Ulm. Dr. Papierniak amputated my leg right below the knee. He is a very good surgeon, so everything went well. Every thing is healed now and I have a temporary artificial leg. I have met so many wonderful and supportive people though this journey in life. In 1976 my mother passed away at the age of 64, from N.F. I'm very lucky to be alive!