Jason Hardisky

I was browsing the web today and found your website, as I began to read some of the stories I began to tear up, for the last four years I have lived my life as if nothing had happened to me, I now realize how lucky I am to be here telling my story. My heart goes out to everyone that has been touched by NF. It was a Sunday afternoon in May of 2004 and I had just finished relaying a new floor in my kids bedroom and was cleaning up the construction debris. As i walked out of their room my foot scraped a floor register and gave me a small cut on my pinky toe. I cleaned up the cut with peroxide and put some first aid ointment and a band-aid on it( not wanting to get blood on the newly finished floor). On Tuesday at work my knee began to bother me and it was getting difficult to work. Being a tough guy I went to work on Wednesday thinking I'll just nurse my leg. Well that afternoon I bent down to pick something up and it felt as though someone had stabbed my leg. I was working with my father and told him I could not stand the pain any longer, so I called my family doctor and made an appointment the following morning. I went to the doctor and he examined my knee and felt it was fluid on the knee. I picked up a prescription for anti inflammatory meds. When I awoke Friday morning my whole leg had began to swell even more. Not feeling well I called the family doctor again, he told me to go to the hospital and he would have me admitted. I remember well checking into the hospital with my Wife, my mother and father. At sometime that night I got worse. On Saturday morning my doctor arrived with another doctor and they both looked puzzled at to what was going on. They told me and my family that I was going to be transferred to Pittsburgh where they are better equipped to deal with me. So on Monday morning I was transferred by ambulance to Pittsburgh. The emergency surgery team and Disease doctors immediately diagnosed me with NF. I underwent 3 different debridements on my left calf. On the final debridement they opened up the back side of my leg to check for infection. I was left out of the hospital almost 10 days later with an open wound and a vac pump. Let me be honest with you, I really don't remember much of the hospital stay. I do remember the last 2 days well. My wife and family thought that i was going to die. They told me of all I had been through, the surgery's, the cat scans, the stays in ICU. I arrived home where my wife became my nurse. Every four hours see had to give me antibiotics. She had to help clean me, feed me, In general I owe my wife a lot. after staying at home with the VAC pump for 6 weeks. Every other day the dressings had to be changed. It was my very own leg waxing every other day. At the end of the 6 weeks I went back to Pittsburgh and underwent a skin graft. I then went home again. All in all I was at home recovering for five months. I was finally able to walk again and went back to work. Now i feel I am totally recovered and well. I can't believe how such a small cut caused such pain and suffering, but I guess anything is possible. I would love to thank my doctors who reacted quickly to my illness. I would also like to thank my family and friends for helping my wife cope with this and for helping her with our three children. And finally I would like to express my love and appreciation for my wife In all she had to endure with this. If it wasn't for her I don't believe I would have made it through this. I Love you Melissa!