What a week I’ve had. I went to the doctor last Tuesday morning because I had a very swollen and painful right hand. I literally could not use my hand at all. The doctor took one look at it and said I needed to be admitted into the hospital immediately! I knew it was bad just had no idea how bad it was or how serious the situation was. I ended up in the hospital for 5 days. As I found out infections of the hands are very complex and very serious.
I had a staph infection in my hand. Over a week prior to this I cut my thumb on a piece of glass. I cleaned it up and figured it would heal. The thumb was a bit sore and red but nothing that caused me any great alarm. I washed and used hydrogen peroxide on it. Then the cut healed shut. In less than 36 hours I went from a slightly sore and swollen thumb to an entire hand that was VERY swollen, unusable, bright red and extremely painful. Apparently as soon as the cut healed it basically locked the staff infection inside my hand and it spread rapidly.
These types of infections can quickly move to the bloodstream, bones and joints. The doctor’s put me on IV antibiotics and morphine for the pain. They did a CAT scan that showed it was in the tissues only, praise God. But it took almost 2 days before the infection started to show signs of responding to the antibiotics (We were so thanking God when it did start responding as the news is full of stories of bacteria that is unresponsive to antibiotics… MRSA, flesh eating types :::shudder:::). I almost needed surgery to flush out the infection, but the antibiotics finally kicked in and thankfully I avoided the surgery. Eventually they put me on 2 more types of antibiotics which also seemed to be helping. Finally they did an MRI to see if the infection was in my bones & joints, and again, praise God it was not.
On the 5th day they let me go home with prescriptions for 2 antibiotics and pain meds. According to the orthopedic doctor I’ll likely need physical therapy to regain the complete use of my hand. I have found doing just about everything I do a challenge (as I’m right handed ), but on the positive side I’m seeing improvements every day in the functioning of my hand. I have use of 2 fingers and my thumb so that has helped me to at least be able to type! :) I still have pain (but nothing like I had) and very little strength in the hand… picking up a spoon is difficult..
For now my goal is to rest and recover. I will be back to blogging as soon as I’ve healed and get past this ordeal.