Thank you checking my website, unfortunately I have no new and exciting acting gigs to report. I am still healing from my horrific battle with NECROTIZING FASCIITIS. I am working with a great wound specialist and we are hopeful that the area which was the deepest and most catastrophic of my wound will be healed soon. So please keep me in your continuous prayers.
For those who may not know, last August 15, 2006, I was scheduled to enter Providence St. Joseph’s Hospital in Burbank, California for a routine myomectomy to remove two uterine fibroids. This is a fairly common procedure among women and I was scheduled to be home in two days. Those of you who know me know that I have been an athlete all my life and was considered the picture of health. Even so, I prepared and trained for my surgery in the same way I prepared for the LA Marathon. When I asked Dr. Pearson what I could do to ensure a smooth and swift recovery and he said, “Be in the best shape possible.” That was all I needed to hear.
Sometimes even the best plans do not work out. I spent the next month in the ICU and it would be two months total before I was able to leave St. Joseph’s. During the days prior to my original release date my fever hovered around 103°, I was in the immense pain, and throwing up so often I was weak.
Thankfully my parents had come to town to be with me, because it was my mother who ended up saving my life. During one of the evening dressing checks my mother noticed a black dot near my incision. She asks the nurse about it and was assured that it was “nothing”. However we had not seen that dot in the morning when Dr. Pearson came to check my incision. My mother asked the nurse to please call the doctor and ask him come back to the hospital to take a look at it. After many sighs and condescending remarks, the nurse agreed to “bother the doctor for what is going to turn out to be no big deal” when my mother said she would call him herself.
The blood drained from my doctor’s face when he pulled back my gauze dressing. In the hour and a half it took him to return to the hospital, the tiny black dot on my stomach had turned into a quarter sized pustule! After waiting quite some time for this same nurse to answer HIS pressing on the call button, the doctor finally looked at my mother asked if she was squeamish and told her to put on gloves and a mask.
Right then and there the doctor and my mother proceeded to open up my incision, extend it out by about 2 inches on each side, and began to squeeze out pus and drainage. It was the most surreal moment of my life.
I had contracted a Nosocomial Surgical Site Infection. Nosocomial infections are those which are a result of treatment in a hospital, but secondary to the patient's original condition. Infections are considered nosocomial if they first appear 48 hours or more after hospital admission.
I unfortunately had acquired NECROTIZING FASCIITIS or as it is commonly termed MAN-EATING FLESH DISEASE. The following weeks were a blur of painful tests, major drugs and multiple surgeries to cut the infection out of my body.
Health officials estimate that 2 million patients a year will acquire a nosocomial infection during their hospital stay. Of those patients, over 90,000 will DIE.
Ms. Magazine reports that as many as 90 percent of deaths from hospital infections could be prevented.
Everyday that I wake up I thank the Lord in Heaven for the blessing of life and still having all my limbs. I thank Him for my parents and their steadfast love and the abundant support of my family and friends.
I AM A SURVIVOR!!!
I lived to tell the tale. And I WILL tell it, for every person who did not make it through. For every person too busy learning how to use prosthetic arms and legs. For every person who’s spirit has been broken by a broke system.
Not ‘Why me Lord?” YES…ME LORD! Send me I will go. And just like that a new Patient Advocate was born!
View the Summary of Deficiencies from the Federal Validation Survey and State Inspection.