On January 2nd, I went in for a dressing change. I noticed one small tiny bump under the stat lock. I told the lady that changed it that it starts out like that, but can turn into a red/blistery/oozy mess quickly. She did the change as protocol for me and I came back the following week.
On January 9th, I went in for a dressing change with a different lady. She noticed a few bumps under the stat lock and I looked and saw that it was more inflamed than the week before. We decided to use just a simple foam strip to secure the picc line and return to see how things looked the following week. She had planned on ordering the specialized securement device that the insertion team recommended. In addition, it was difficult to get the stat lock off my arm. This caused even more irritation. I noticed some itching, but it wasn’t enough to keep me awake or drive me bonkers.
On January 16th, I went in and the bumps had not gotten any worse, but not much better. She used the new securement device and I went on my way thinking the next week it would be improved.
On January 23rd, I went back and there were still some bumps and irritation. Since she didn’t want to put on a stat lock and she hadn’t had a chance to order the new type of securement devices, she put on a strip of sterile foam tape and I went on my way. By Saturday, my arm was itching. By Sunday, it was itching worse. On Monday I went in for an IV therapy and told her it was itching – but I’ve had worse (and that was true).
On Wednesday -I noticed a very small patch of brown on the dressing near where the foam tape was. I pushed it out of my mind since I was going in the next day and got a message that doctor’s office would be closed on Thursday due to dangerous road conditions. My appt was rescheduled for this morning.
I told her it was bothering me a lot and I wasn’t surprised when she pulled off the MeFix dressing. There were a lot of irritated bumps and it was oozing. 😦 I should have trusted my instinct on Monday to have her change it, but the office was so busy there wasn’t time. After she cleaned it this morning, I had her put on a small piece of sterile gauze on the bumps so that the adhesive of the MeFix wouldn’t irritated it any more. She’ll change it again on Monday.
I certainly don’t want to go through the irritation, oozy, blistery mess that I went through the last time I had a picc line. Hoepfully things will settle down. I ordered the new securement device and hopefully my arm will be healed enough to use it by Thursday when I go in for my dressing change. 3 dressing changes in one week when your arm is irritated is so painful.
I was supposed to have my follow up today (a snow day here in NC btw – it snowed last night and the ground is blanketed with whiteness this morning). However, last Wednesday they called and asked if I could come in on Monday instead. They had a cancellation and knew that I prefer to come to follow ups earlier rather than later. I took them up on their offer (and thank goodness I did because my hubby was able to go with me to this very important appointment).
Typically I am at the office for about 2 to 2 and 1/2 hours, but on this particular day – I was there 3 and 1/2 hours and then went to the pharmacy to put in my prescriptions. I won’t give specifics on the oral medications that I’ll be on, but after my follow up – my doctor worked on my treatment plan while I was still in the office with his staff. He came out and announced that I would begin treatment on Monday – (my birthday!!!). I will be on 2 IV antibiotics (Rocephin & Cipro) plus some other oral antibiotics. We’re concerned about Lyme Disease, but even more concerned for Bartonella & Babesia – and one of hte staff is concerned about Mycoplasma so I will be doing an herbal remedy specifically for Mycoplasma. For those that don’t know – Mycoplasma species have been identified in ticks. These are smaller than bacteria – and invade human cells & disrupt the immune system. Some symptoms include fatigue, musculoskeletal symptoms and cognitive problems. All of these symptoms I have in spades. It can also be treated with antibiotics, so between the herbal & antibiotic therapy, I should be sweeping these little guys away!
Each week of treatment will vary just slightly, but the first two weeks of treatment are going to kick my back side. I joke that it’s a slap, backslap, gut punch, repeat. Am I worried? You betcha! But, it’s only because I always worry when I start new medications and there are a lot of new medications to start on Monday.
What is the plan? Basically –
- Kill the bugs
- Dissolve the Biofilm
- Detox the body of dead bugs
In addition, I have several deficiency’s that we’re going to try to take care of. Some are ongoing issues such as Vitamin D and others are newly popped up deficiency’s – Once I get my head wrapped around it all, I might post a better idea of what I’ll be doing.
To be honest, this has been a long time coming. I’ve tired a lot of things since March of 2007 and now it’s time to pull out the big guns from one of the most well known Lyme Physician in the US. I’m so blessed that my Lyme Physician keeps learning new things every time I see him so that he always has something interesting to tell me. Right now, there is not one person in his office that I’m not fond of – (one person I’m leary of for my particular case, but I do like her a lot!) They always take such great care of me. I’ll see them twice next week and twice the week after, then it should go back down to once per week while I’m on the PICC line.
My arm feels pretty good baring me doing anything stupid (like laying on it too long or lifting or reaching for something I’m not supposed to lift or reach for). Last week when I went in for my dressing change, I notice a couple of tiny small bumps under the stat lock. The nurse adjusted the statlock in location and we hoped it would look better this week. It’s been giving me no real trouble so I was expecting it to look fine. I was wrong. There were more bumps and one of the little bumps looked a bit raw. So this week we’re doing a different securement technique – I’m not really comfortable with it, but hoping it will look better next week. It was also miserable to remove this week. The past few times it’s come up fairly easily. Today it felt like she was ripping my skin off or my skin had turned to glue and was sticking to the lock.
Here’s hoping that the switch up this week will make my arm clear up. I also submitted to her the name of the alternate that the surgeon used to place it. Hopefully we can keep my arm looking nice and calm – with few to little bumps – with few raw places.
Happy New Year. 2013 came with many ups and downs. I spent the last few days of 2013 sleeping a lot. Staying up for New Years Even just isn’t something I’m interested in doing. I went to bed at 8pm and neighborhood fire works woke me at midnight. I fell back to sleep around 12:30 and snoozed until 8:15 this morning. I woke up with a headache. It’s always nice to ring in the New Year with one of those. I took some medication to ease it off, but it’s not helped yet.
2014 will be known as the year of IV Antibiotics if things fall into place.