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Kathy Wagner's Survivor Story
My Experience with NF
 

March 28th
I entered hospital to have c-section birth of my twin boys. This was not fun. The doctors kept dropping things in me like beepers and tools. Now I fear beepers whenever I see or hear them. When the docs squished my ovaries white milky pus gushed out. They told my fiancee it was nothing to worry about and since neither one of us ever seen or had a c-section. We thought nothing of it.

March 29th
I began feeling sick with flu like symptoms, diarrhea, vomiting and fevers.

April 8th
In the morning hours I was very sick. Vomiting, fever, unable to move or eat well, and diarrhea. My fiancee force fed me chocolate pudding then I went to use the bathroom and busted wide open. It poured white milky pus. He called E.R. and they rushed me in. By time I got there, I was already fading in and out of conciseness. The decision to transfer me to a better suited hospital was made and I am still unsure if I was driven or flown but I arrived at this hospital in a coma. The doctors told my family that I would not survive the coma and if I did wake I would be damaged. Well, they were right. I am damaged.

April 8th - April 12th
I was in coma. I had 9 IV's, 3 surgeries, 6 tubes sticking out and 2 blood transfusions before I woke from the coma.

April 12th - April 18th
I was fed a liquid diet threw a tube in my throat. I still had 8 IV's,many c-scans and x-rays. I had 2 tubes in my throat: 1 for food and 1 for liquefied solid bowel sand - a catheter for urination.

April 11th
My fiancee consented to my first of 3 blood transfusions.

April 11th - April 18th
I was not conscious but later read reports of having 8 surgeries.

April 19th
I got a tube jammed down my throat while I was awake and fighting it.

April 23rd
I found out I was allergic to the tube feedings .

April 25 - April 30th
I started recognizing my surroundings and my family members.

May 1st
I was finally told I have necrotizing fasciitis and toxic shock syndrome and it was explained in detail what had happened and what was going to happen in future.

May 5th
I left the hospital to begin home treatment and weekly wound vac changes at the clinic.

May 21st
My first appointment with plastic surgeons. They refused to do the tummy tuck or skin graft because I was smoking and it would not heal correctly.

June 2nd
Sprained right wrist adding more pain to my already horrible pain.

June 16th
My last appointment with my doctor before my insurance dropped me.
I was told I would be requiring bandages for the next 20 yrs or so until surgery was possible by insurance company. The bandages would protect the 3 by 2 inch hole in my tummy so I could live normally to a point with many restrictions.

Today, July 13th
I remain in bandages with hopes of receiving surgery someday in future.

Other points of interest:
Most of my doctors, nurses, therapist and other care providers were nice to me, but a few were unprofessionally mean and insulting. My favorite doctor was Dr. Rizzo who I renamed the head RAT. She was always followed by a group of students whom I call her personal RAT PACK. She did not seem to mind this title I gave her. I asked her one day if it was alright for me to joke like that and she said it is good to know I still have a sense of humor even after what I have been through. Dr. Marc was the first one to fully aware me of my condition and explain it in terms I could understand.

Permanent effect of the coma and NF:
  1. I shake a lot
  2. I have many scars and a 3 by 2 inch hole
  3. Loss of feeling in 3 fingers on right hand
  4. Neurological damage in my neck
  5. Memory loss
  6. A great story to tell my kids and grand kids
  7. Please note: The following linked images are very graphic and may be upsetting.

    Images of Kathy's Experience


Kathy Wagner
waggyurd@hotmail.com
Fulton, Missouri
July 2003
 

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February 5, 2006