I’ve been fighting a feeling I didn’t know I was feeling. I haven’t gotten out of bed for over a week (except to use the commode). What in the world could put me in bed for a week that I haven’t been put through in the last 2 years? If you are at all familiar with my “escapades,” you wouldn’t be surprised. Well, I didn’t know what was up until something on TV nudged me and caused me to flash on a perfectly good reason for this depression.
It all started almost a year ago when I entered rehab. There was this really tall, thin, skeletal black man struggling to move from his chair in the PT lab. He was also missing a left leg. Although my condition had happened in one fell swoop, his happened in three surgeries. We soon warmed to each other and began the process of emotionally joining forces to fight the evils of the world of diabetes. When he needed a kick in the pants, he got one. When I needed to be encouraged to go the extra step, he was there toi encourage me. Soon we were fast friends and co-chair of the first formal Resident’s Cpuncil of this rehab center.
We both worked and talked. We both progressed and had little slides down the wrong end of progress. He somehow had injured his left leg and it had become swollen … too swollen to wear his prosthetic. Here’s where the lesson begins. You MUST make sure to take care of any wounds you get and take care to clean and wash any clothes or accessories used so no infection can set in.
The final part of this tale is that my friend got sick and landed in the hospital. He had pneumonia … and an infected residual limb. The infection turned to a staph infection, which turned into gangrene, which turned into another planned amputation. Then I learned that he had passed away due to the gangrene turned to sepsis. All because he didn’t follkow the practical guidelines that a diabetic needs to pay attention to.
There … you have it now! I’m depressed! All because a diabetic friend didn’t follow good wound care. Consider this and advise your friends well.
Funny thing, though. I just got a good reason to listen to myself. My residual limb has shrunk 2" at the tip and progressively less on the way up the limb. The prosthetist gave me heavier socks to wear on the limb to use up some of the excess space in the limb. As the day wore on, my limb started burning and itching. Before I knew it, I had blisters! Now I can’t wear my prosthetic and I need to keep it extremely clean so it can heal and I can then wear my prosthetic.
Moral of the story … follow your doctor’s instructions and then be even more particular about cleanliness!!
Now, can you tell me how to get out of this bed!!!