Mary Axtell

I too am a Necrotizing Fascitis survivor. I have had it twice. The first time was in 1991. I needed surgery for a Herniated disc. We lived in Sacramento, CA. had the back surgery and after hospital discharge, one week later, my husband Eric was cleaning the site, he said he needed to call the doctor. He said the wound was opening not closing. I got straight in to see the doctor. He admitted me to the hospital, for immediate surgery. I was told I had MRSA in my spine. I was then told if it got into my central nervous system, then there was nothing more could be done. The first thing to be done was to operate and debride the tissue, drain the wound then start IV Vancomycin. The doctor said it was a race against time. I was in the ICU and complete isolation .I was in hospital for 4 weeks with infectious disease doctors treating me. On the fifth week the doctor said they were going to do a White Cell scan, which would determine whether the disease had spread into my spine, and if I would live or die. That was how it was put to me. The scan results came back negative, so I was good to get home with additional Vancomycin continued treatment in my home. I also had Cipro. They taught my husband how to administer the IV Vancomycin at home. I have since contracted Ulcerative Colitis and had my large intestine removed, and now I have a collapsed spine, partially due to steroid treatment for the Colitis, but as the doctors do not know what damage was done to my spine from the MRSA. Technically they called it Necrotizng Fascitis. I have also had Pulmonary Embolisms in my lungs.

Then in 2004 I felt so sick and ill, I did not know why so went to the ER here in Centralia, WA. I explained my medical history. They did tests but could not find anything except an elevated White Cell count. The doctor saw a tiny spot on my leg, like a spider bite. He rubbed his gloved finger across the spot, and I told him I did not know I had this. He admitted me to hospital due to the white cell count. Next morning my leg from ankle to above my knee was bright red, and swollen bad. They got me straight onto Vancomycin, Cipro, and other IV stuff. I was due to fly to Scotland my hometown at the end of that week for my niece's wedding. I told he doctor I was going. He told me I had Necrotizing Fascitis in my leg, and no way could I leave hospital. My life was at stake. I said I want to live but I promised my niece I would be there. Well they added Zyvox to my medications, and stopped the spread of the NF. My leg was painful and I was so sick. But determined to go to Scotland I told the doctor my mind was made up. So he said he would let me go if I followed his instructions to the letter.

1 He gave me a prescription for Zyvox.
2 I was to report to he local hospital near my home in Scotland.
3 Just allowed to the wedding, rest otherwise in bed.
4 See him when I get home in 10 days.

I agreed and the doctor called United Airlines to assure in flight care for me. Then we asked how much the Zyvox were he said about $1400, for a ten day supply. I said we could not afford it as we had spent our money on the tickets.. He had me wait and went out of the room. He called the Manufacturer, and got the drugs for me for $10. Out of the hospital pharmacy. I could not thank him enough. I went to the wedding in a wheelchair. But I was there.

Today I am always ill I am wheelchair bound as my spine has collapsed. I still have a two inch piece of colon, that bleeds, and causes chronic swelling and pain.. I try my best to live life, at 61 yrs old I have a great husband who is 73 and takes care of me. Surgery now is dangerous for me no matter what kind it is, due to complications having had MRSA, NF, Pulmonary Empolism, and more, I have Diabetes, and am also a Cancer survivor. That is my story. I do want to thank all of my doctors though and if through this site I may do that, then Thank You.