Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Small Improvements!

Hola From Monterrey,

To view Jessica on Fox TV, Click on Link Below:

If I can analyze Jessica's RSD and how it is different than most, it is that her RSD was re-triggered by infection - Lyme Disease - and not by an injury - which seems to be the case for all the other cases we have seen since here in Monterrey. So, when she gets an infection in her body it causes the central nervous system and the immune system to go haywire and with that an elevation of her burning internal RSD pain.

Jessica continues to make the small improvements necessary. Yesterday she received another booster. We were able to sit the bed up a little more! Also, yesterday she was able to eat mashed potatoes! (made with lactose-free milk - as she is highly lactose intolerant) Also, I made her soup with tiny noodles in the microwave (the kind that you make from a package) and she was able to eat that as well! As you know, her J-tube became infected and was taken out two weeks ago. It was noticeably kinked and coiled and indeed was obstructing @ 80% of her intestine! So, the plan now is to slowly introduce soft foods to see how she tolerates them. She is also up to Stage 3 baby foods and is able to eat them with no problems. And, she was able to suck on the Hershey kisses that she received for Valentine's Day as well!

Praise God for these "small steps" which are "huge advances" for Jessica. Praise God also for Dr. Cantu (aka Dr. Green Shirt) - he is simply God-sent, one of those rare type of doctors and we truly love him so! (Jessica has been fortunate to have these type of "special" doctors helping her to get well these past four years! - special shout out to Dr. Liegner, Dr. Finkelstein, Dr. Bottino & Dr. Kirkpatrick - you are all very "special" as well!)

Please continue to pray for Jessica and ask God to help her continue this path of small steps without any more infections or setbacks. Please pray also for a decrease in the pain that she is experiencing. We pray for all of you as well and we ask God to keep you all in his tender loving care!

In God's love,
Sarah Gina (Jessica's Mom)*

James 5:14-16
"Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray for him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up".

***To Post A Comment, CLICK on Comments Below***


Anonymous said...

WOW lots of little step = big steps!!! So happy & proud of Jessica for making these very hard steps.YOU GO GIRL!!
Happy to hear about your ability to sit & eat.Now I will continue my prayers for the pain to GO AWAY!
Keep up the good fight ladies!

Fern said...

Yes! Small steps turn into big leaps! How wonderful that you can enjoy some food, Jess! and sitting up a little more each time?! I hope and pray that these steps forward continue and that you are able to stay away from J tubes and the like. May God continue to give you the strength to fight your way forward as indeed you must be. You have such a great spirit and I wish you all the success that comes from being willing to "step out of the boat".

Sarah, you are a great cheerleader and blogger! Thanks for keeping us so up to date on the happenings and for spelling it out, the good and the bad, in such a heartfelt way that there is always something to take to God in praise and petition. Not an easy walk, and you do it with great delicacy.

I look forward to seeing you in a few short weeks and hearing and seeing the great strides that will have been made. :)

Love you

Anonymous said...

More small IMPROVEMENTS! Yay! Wonderful news! Praise God!

I bet those Hershey kisses tasted pretty good!

I thought I would share with you an encouraging story I was reading the other day about a man named Paul Bach-y-Rita. Back in the
1960's (long before you were born, Jessica) Paul's father had suffered a major stroke and was paralyzed on one side (keep reading - the story gets better). Paul took his father home and did not know how to rehabilitate him. He had been told it was not possible but Paul tried anyways. Paul thought about it and said to himself, how do we learn to walk and talk, etc. as babies? So, he had his father lean his paralyzed side against the wall and had him crawl around. Later his father was able to get around on his knees, then some time later, he was able to walk. When his father learn to use a typewriter, he would lift his paralyzed arm up and drop it on the keys. He just kept going and eventually, over time, he could type (reminds me of watching a child learning to eat - they pick up the food but can't seem to get in their mouth, but eventually, then learn to eat - I bet your Mom can remember all 3 of your girls doing this - lifting the food up to your cheek and having to turn your little heads to get the food in your mouths).

It was a very, very slow process of very small steps but in 3 years, his father had completely recovered! He was able to walk, return to work and get married. Amazing!

This, of course, had changed Paul's direction in life. You can google his name if you want to read more. (When did google become a verb?) :)


It is amazing how fearfully and wonderfully we are made! Oh, who can know the mind of God!

Keep going, Jessica! Each small step is bringing you closer and closer to your goal!

With love & prayers,
The Turners

如此的 said...

cool blog,期待更新........................................

Anonymous said...

Dear Jessica,

Thinking about you everyday. I am happy you got a Hershey's kiss!

I hope the trend of small victories continues to move forward for you.

Love to You,


Anonymous said...

Psalm 33:4

4 For the word of the LORD is right and true; he is faithful in all he does.

Psalm 57:10

10 For great is your love, reaching to the heavens;
your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

Psalm 85:10

10 Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.

Psalm 117:2

2 For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever.

Praise the LORD.

Anonymous said...

Great work Jessica and Gina. You worked hard for those baby steps and you succeeded. Proud of you.
Linda in Saratoga
now in Naples visiting my folks.

Anonymous said...

How Great is our God!

Ashley said...

Those are incredible steps girl! I am sooooooooo proud of you. Sending you love <3


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Jessica's Journey to Getting Her Life Back

By Sarah Gina (Jessica's Mom)

As we begin this journey toward renewed health we would like to express our sincere heartfelt thanks and appreciation to Dr. Anthony Kirkpatrick and all the work he has done and continues to do in order to bring patients like my daughter Jessica back to a more meaningful life and restored from this devastating illness. Also, special thanks to Dr. Fernando Cantu and his team of doctors in Mexico for taking on a difficult case like my daughters, Words cannot express the renewed sense of hope that we have that one day, our Jessica, can regain her life that has been taken away from her – God Bless you all!

Jessica’s Story

Once an A+ student who loved school, was involved in many extracurricular activities, played varsity tennis, lacrosse and gymnastics and enjoyed spending time with her family and friends, our daughter Jessica has spent the last 3 years incapacitated, paralyzed, unable to sit or walk and eat. She spends her days confined to a hospital bed, wearing sunglasses and noise-canceling headphones, due to severe light and sound sensitivity.

Jessica and her sisters, 2 mos. before becoming ill

The pain she feels is indescribable and all attempted treatments have not even come close to relieving her suffering.

She has seen many doctors, undergone numerous painful tests and procedures, has been prescribed various medications, and has been hospitalized frequently including being intubated and on a ventilator. She is severely debilitated and currently is only 92 pounds. This is certainly no life for a 21 year old young woman!

Jessica is suffering from neurologic Lyme disease and Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), a severely debilitating and painful neuromuscular disorder. She suffers daily with constant sharp, stabbing, tingling and burning pain; throughout her body; severe headaches; paralysis; intense muscle spasms; gastroparesis; seizures; twisting of her limbs (dystonia); sensitivity to any touch (allodynia); extreme sensitivity to lights and sounds; excessive sweating; swelling; fevers; softening of bones; decreased hair growth; redness and discoloration of the limbs; and painful skin ulcers. The pain is constant and unrelenting, but despite her suffering, her faith in God remains and she still has hope for her future.

Jessica's painful skin lesions

Jessica's journey began in 1999, when she was only 11 years old. She became very ill with Mono and was bed bound for 3 months. She subsequently developed RSD (stage 1) of the lower right leg. She received early intervention and returned to playing sports and enjoying her life.

Jessica, age 15, at summer camp

Four years later, in 2003, while away at a sleep-away camp, she developed a rash behind her right knee, coincidentally in the same leg that previously had RSD!

At the time, the camps nurse & doctor told her that it was “duck rash” – a rash from swimming in the lake with duck feces. However, Jessica was able to obtain photos from camp from another camper which shows the classic “bulls-eye” rash from Lyme disease! It wasn’t until much later and only after developing symptoms and becoming very ill, was the diagnosis of Lyme disease and Babesiosis (another tick-borne infection) made.

Most people (and doctors!) have no idea how serious Lyme disease can become and no clue how to properly diagnose it. Unfortunately, if she would have been promptly diagnosed and treated for Lyme disease, the RSD would not have been triggered and she would not be suffering.

July 2003, Jessica's Lyme disease rash

If it wasn’t for her doctor, Dr. Liegner, and his expertise with complex cases of Lyme, and his determination to try any means in getting her well, by getting a “team” of doctors on her case, we wouldn’t be here today, still fighting. We owe him a deep sense of gratitude for all he does for Jessica!

During these past three years and with the pain becoming more intense and unbearable she has been seeing Dr. Finkelstein for pain management. He has even made house calls to spare her the pain of coming by ambulance to his office. Jessica has been treated with multiple pain medications, at the highest possible doses, as well as an implanted dilaudid pain pump, which delivers potent medication straight into her spine. Many doctors have told us that with the amount of medications Jessica was taking would be enough to “kill a horse”—yet they had little to no effect on her. If it wasn’t for Dr. Finkelstein trying to alleviate her constant, severe, unrelenting pain, I don’t know how she would have managed. He is very special to us as well.

Recently Jessica was transported by air ambulance to Tampa, Florida to see Dr. Anthony Kirkpatrick, a world renowned RSD expert. Dr. Kirkpatrick told us that Jessica is one of the most debilitated patients he has ever seen.

Jessica getting into the air-ambulance to go see Dr. Kirkpatrick

Upon his testing and because Jessica's condition is so severe, Dr. Kirkpatrick is recommending the only treatment available that can possibly help relieve her suffering, and afford her some semblance of a “normal” life - the Ketamine Coma Procedure - a clinical trial that is being conducted in Monterrey, Mexico.

During this procedure Jessica will be put into a coma , with the hope that her nerves, brain and spinal cord will “reset” -so that her nervous system sends the correct signals to her brain.

Yes, this is a radical, scary treatment, however, for Jessica, "scary" is thinking that she could spend the rest of her life in this condition, unable to walk, eat, or take care of herself. Since all reasonable treatments have failed to help her, we feel we must try everything possible to help Jessica regain her life.

We understand that due to Jessica’s fragile condition, there is a high risk associated with this procedure. We are also aware that other patients with severe RSD like Jessica's have had success.

Jessica’s goal is to one day become a doctor. Our hope is that with this study she can have that chance. As her Mom, I know that she will be a great doctor because when a patient presents in her office and says “Doctor, I am in pain and words cannot express how bad it is” – my daughter –Dr. Jessica– will be able to say - :I know how you feel, I’ve been there too. So, take a seat and let me tell you a story”….

We are so thankful and feel so blessed to have been led to Dr. Kirkpatrick.

God is good and with his help guiding Dr. Cantu and Dr. Kirkpatrick, our hope is for Jessica to be able to return to us whole again and pain-free!