Culprit Identified!

The last couple of days have be the normal run of the mill hospital days, which is why I haven’t done any blog posts. The bay is not that bad, two of the old ladies are lovely, the third is OK but the last one not so. You can’t have it all, especially at night because the selfish woman next to me sleeps most of the day and keeps us all awake at night. The two nice ladies make me laugh as they can be like Statler and Waldorf from the Muppets. No one in the bay likes the lady next to me and the staff aren’t huge fans either.

For some reason I’ve been having problems with the food, I just don’t seem to fancy much of what’s on the menu. They do a lovely little fresh fruit salad that I have at the end of every meal, even breakfast, as its nice and refreshing. I’d saved my Banana from lunch as I knew that I’d only ordered the fruit salad and a satsuma for supper. The kitchen must have felt that this wasn’t enough for me so they doubled my order. After eating two fruit salads, two satsuma a and a banana I should – sorry for being crude – be able to shit through a straw tomorrow. Hospital is like prison, it has its routine which is the same things at the same times every day. You have a small bed space with a few comforting items, share with others and look forward to visiting time.

Sorry, I should be bringing you up to speed with the knee. After the aspiration carried out on Saturday I have been having intravenous Flucloxacillin four times a day. The redness has been subsiding but the recent arthroscopy port had been weeping still. The Consultant, who I like only slightly more than I did to start with, said that he wanted that to dry up before I could go home. He was more than happy to keep me here and he would look after me. This morning he came round and removed both dressings, I looked down at the port and thought it looked quite good, it wasn’t so red and looked dry to me. He started pressing and prodding, then he squeezed and thick puss came out. He told me this is what came out of it while I was in theatre. I couldn’t believe it, I wasn’t going home today.

They took a swab and sent it urgently across to microbiology to see what they could grow, which every time up till now has been nothing. I said that I was more concerned about an old arthroscopy hole that has the last red patch around it. The scar has stretched and is slightly raised, I give it just a day or two before it opens and the last thing I need right now is another open hole. The other concern is that the antibiotics get the redness down and they seem to get on top of it here, then the minute I get out on oral antibiotics – not as strong as intravenous – it starts to flare again. The wounds were redressed and we awaited the swab results.

This afternoon the SHO came round and said that the results were back and they managed to grow something. They had tested it with different antibiotics and the best one to use is Tazocin. I asked about Co-amoxiclav and was told that it’s resistant to that, which is why it may not have worked last time I was in. The culprit they managed to grow is E. coli, which was found in the left knee when I had the infection. I knew that E. coli was found in the intestines and was associated with feces. Now, unless I’d – sorry another crude bit – wiped my bum with my knee I was at a loss to understand how E. coli was found in it.

I googled ‘E. coli in knee’ and was very surprised at what I found. It’s really interesting about how it can get in the joints, what it can do, and the problems it can cause if it’s not treated. I did this after Mum & Dad had left so I text Dad to tell him to have a look for himself. Later he text me back to say that he didn’t know why they didn’t check for that in the first!

That’s it, your up to date. Tazocin three times a day, the Consultant will be round in the morning and I’m hoping he can give me a better idea of when I can go home. I’m also going to try and remember to ask him about the Oxford Clinic. How am I feeling about all this? I’m glad they have found the culprit and know the right antibiotic to deal with it. I’m still tired all the time but that’s a result of the other issue I think. The port is stinging a bit where it’s still weeping and the skin could start to breakdown because it’s constantly wet. I have a concern that the old arthroscopy hole will open if the antibiotics don’t start working fast enough. It will be interesting to see how the knee is looking when they stop the intravenous antibiotics, and whether I feel it’s likely to flare again or not. Of course we’re probably assuming that because they’ve grown E. coli that’s all were dealing with, that antibiotics will kill it and job done, what if it’s not working on its own? It’s sad when you can read a knee like a book, feel the unique infection pain, know how it reacts to antibiotics, when it is likely to flare and know when it will open an old scar. Maybe this will be the last time I have to read this particular book, I can live in hope I suppose.




2 Responses to “Culprit Identified!”

  1. On the whole, pretty good news.

    I understand your reservations about whether or not it is working alone and oral antibiotics having less punch but, in a better place in yesterday!

    I can’t wait for tomorrow’s post, desperate to know how this shit turns out :-)

    • I’m not doing a post today as an infection guy saw me earlier, which could change the game plan. I hope to know more tomorrow so I’m waiting for more solid information before doing the next post. Love the enthusiastic comment and I hope to be able to tell you how this will turn out soon :) Thanks as ever for your support :) xxx

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