Abscess Update

I had a follow-up appointment today for the infected abscess on the back of my left thigh. I didn't get to see the doctor who initially helped me last week. Instead I got a newb. I don't mind working with newbs, I am more than happy to help them get experience. I just was a little annoyed that I had to go over everything I have gone through already because I couldn't see my usual doctor.

First off, my blood pressure was 105/68 which is slightly low. The first thing I thought was that if my BP is this low all the time, maybe that's why I am so tired all the time.

The doctor asked me a million questions about the infection. I was more than happy to show him pictures I had on my phone of the infection when it first started and when it was at it's worst. He was happy I had them and took a couple minutes to study them and compare to the wound now. After examining the infection, he said it looked like a classic staph infected abscess and it made sense that it started from a bug bite. He also said he wouldn't be surprised if I was a long-term staph carrier (someone who always has a strain harbored on their body). He said the infection and abscess was well on the way to healing but still required antibiotics. Since he is a newb, he had to get final OK from his attending.

While waiting for the attending doctor to come in, the newb went ahead and listened to my heart and lungs and checked my reflexes and eyes. Just to pass the time.

The attending came in and looked at the infection and said, "Wow, that is a bad one." He gave it a real good examination and decided to scrape the scab off to allow it to drain better. Because I am on blood-thinners, he didn't want to fully lance it. It was a bit painful as he scraped and pulled at the very thick scab and squeezed the abscess. The abscess was stubborn and didn't want to drain easily, so he finally made a very small incision. All of this was done without a local, topical, or any other pain reducer or numbing agent. It really didn't hurt all that bad.

The attending then agreed that I need to stay on the Bactrim (antibiotic) for another week. They dressed the wound. I was asked to return in one week for another follow-up.

Finally, I was given a Tdap booster because I am overdue for it. That is vaccinations for tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough).

I really like the idea of taking pictures. That really can help doctors know how a condition has changed over time. I'll have to remember that.

Yeah, I initially took the pictures to send to my mom, who is a nurse, so she could give me advice on the lesion. I was just lucky that I hadn't deleted them yet because the doctor was very happy to be able to see the progression of the infection.

Good luck, and it sounds like you don't need this advise, but I'm going to mention it anyway. Keep an eye on that sucker!

I've been battling a small ulcer on the bottom/side of my foot by my little toe. Tuesday was 3.5 months! Started out as a blood blister that popped and got infected - Staph.
Well, I was on Bactrim for 2 weeks and the infection cleared up, but the wound refused to heal. I've been seeing a wound care specialist since. Sometimes as often as three times a week! Had to get new diabetic shoes and custom (read expensive) orthotics that we've had to redesign twice already.

I've also had to have an MRI and an arterial Doppler study to rule out other complications.

About three weeks ago, another blood blister appeared above the original wound site, and you guessed it, it got infected. This time Staph and E-coli. Which of course lead to a revelation that the new shoes and orthotics don't work too well when the foot is bandaged! Yep, you guessed it...New shoes & orthotics, which will have to be changed again as the wound heals.

Finally some good news from my visit Tuesday, they are starting to see some epithelial cell growth!

I started on the insulin pump in the middle of all this started so that transition is a factor too.

Keep an eye on your BG. Bacrtim can play havoc with it, more so than other antibiotics in certain circumstances.Chemically induced Hypo- and/or hyper-glycemia sucks! I'v been there, done that.

Ouch, I hope things get better for you soon. Yeah, I've had some strange lows while on this Bactrim, didn't realize until just now that the lows could be because of the antibiotics. Thanks for mentioning that.

I am sorry that you are going through yet another hard time. I hope that your wound heals quickly and that you feel better soon. Sorry that you have lows too. That must be hard to deal with as you have everything else. Lows usually make my pain feel worse. Is that what happens with you. Good luck with everything. You are a fighter.

I am lucky to have a high tolerance for pain. :) Lows don't seem to have an impact on the pain, but highs tend to make me less tolerant toward it; it's the moodiness that comes with highs, I guess. Lows just zap me of any energy I might have, so when I have a low during the night or in the morning, I am virtually useless for most of the day. :(

Thanks for the well wishes.
I just left the wound care center. Great News! New tissue growth is continuing.

Yay! Good for you, I hope it continues to improve.