Thursday, September 30, 2010


Hello To All,

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

Just wanted to update everyone on Jessica.

She had surgery this past Sunday for a new medi-port. The past few days she has been receiving ketamine boosters for some pain post surgery.

An ultrasound was performed during surgery to observe the thrombosis in her right arm. She is on IV heparin and will be switched to coumadin when we leave the hospital. She is completing her IV antibiotics and if all goes as planned, we will hopefully leave the hospital by this weekend!

Jessica is doing very well!

Today we would like to wish a Happy Birthday to Molly -- Jessica's yorkie-poo. She is 9 years young today!
Also, Happy Birthday to Cindel tomorrow. She is someone we have met since being here in Mexico and has become like a 4th daughter. She has been such a help to the both of us and is turning 22!

Also - special prayers for Emma - who has come out of the coma here at the hospital. May her recovery go well!

Prayers to all who suffer with this disease.

We pray for all of you and thank you all for your continued prayers for Jessica.

I will update everyone from the apartment in the next few days.

We praise God for Jessica's healing and for all the miracles that happen here at the Hospital San Jose. We also thank God for Dr. Cantu, Dr. Luigi, and Dr. Dillman --- Jessica's special "team"!

Quote for the day:

Someday hopefully everything will all make perfect sense. So for now, laugh at the confusion, smile through the tears, and keep reminding yourself that everything happens for a reason.
(sent to us from Suzie- a former coma patient)

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

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

65,000 Views of Blog! 21,000 Views of YouTube!

Hello to Family & Friends,

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

Just wanted to quickly update everyone on Jessica.

She is currently still on IV antibiotics for infection and IV heparin for the thrombosis in her right arm.

The plan is to run blood tests at the end of the week and if all is clear, she will have surgery on Saturday for a new medi-port.

Post surgery, the plan is for her to get a series of boosters and then, depending on how things go, we may be able to transition once again out of the hospital and back to the apartment.

Yesterday we had the pleasure of meeting Julian and Nikki Orange who are here with their daughter Emma. She is currently in a ketamine coma for her RSD that began with an ankle injury. They have traveled all the way here to Mexico from New Zealand! We look forward to meeting Emma when she comes out of the coma and up to the 8th floor!

We also met another patient named Maria Rosaria who is from Mexico and is here with her daughter and husband. She too has RSD and is here for treatment as well!

We hope you are all well. May God bless you all. Que Dios Te Bendiga!

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

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Monday, September 20, 2010


Today is a special blog to Michelle - my daughter & Jessica's younger sister - who turns 14 Today!!!

Dear Michelle,(My "Mooshie Mae"),

Wow! I can't believe that my "baby" is turning 14 today and what a lovely young woman you have become!

I remember the day you were born. You made your entrance 2 months prematurely and at 3:56 AM! The doctors were amazed when they weighed you and you were 6 lbs. 1oz.! You were our miracle baby! Your Dad and I were so thankful that God saw fit to bless us once again with a healthy baby girl. Your sisters Jessica and Katherine were so proud too! Each day they fought over who would feed you, change you, hold you, etc.......

Michelle - God has blessed you with a warm heart, a beautiful smile, and an incredible spirit! You always try to find the best in people and are always there with either a kind word, a happy thought, or a special deed.

This spirit of helping was never so evident as it was this past summer. I was so very proud of you! You gave up your entire summer to come to Mexico and help me take care of your older sister Jessica --- and what a help you were!!! Having you here with us made it feel a little bit more "like home". And, when your sister had to go back to the hospital and was unexpectedly put back into a coma - it was YOU - Jessica's little "Wessie" (as she calls you) - who was there, by her side, holding her hand, and..holding mine as well!!!

I want you to always know that I am so very proud of you! You are 14, but, you have had to deal with a lot of things that most 14 year olds never have or will ever have to face! Jessica and I couldn't have done it without you this summer --- always remember that! Even though you are now back home, we think of you always and hold you very close to our hearts!!!

This is a special video for your special day:

So, on this day, your birthday, Jessica and I want you to go out and have a great day! Hopefully, one day, really soon, God willing, we will all be together again!
Remember this: You may have outgrown Mommy's lap, but you will NEVER outgrow my heart!!!

I found this poem for you:

I asked God for a flower and He gave me a bouquet.

I asked God for a minute and He gave me a day.

I prayed to God for true love and He gave me that too.
I prayed to God for an Angel, and He gave me YOU!!!

May God bless you dear angel, especially on this day that marks your birth.
May God bless you Today, Tomorrow, and Always!

All Our Love,
From Monterrey, Mexico
Mommy & Jessica

2Corinthians 7:4:
"I have great confidence in You, I take great pride in You"

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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Mexican Bicentennial Independence Day

Hello to All,

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

Mexican Independence Day is today - September 16 - as this year’s occasion will signify the 200th anniversary of Mexico’s war of independence from the Spanish Empire.

Mexico’s independence struggle began with “El Grito de Dolores,” which means “The Cry of Dolores.” The Dolores here is not a woman but the town where priest Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla incited people to fight their Spanish rulers. (By the way --- the word "dolores" in Spanish means "pain")

To include a bit of history, Hidalgo himself would not live to see Mexico sever her bonds with Spain. The revolutionary priest was captured and executed in 1811, but Mexicans did not achieve independence until 1821.

Today, Hidalgo is known as the “father of the nation” for spearheading the Mexican War of Independence. Every year on the night of September 15, the president of Mexico addresses the Mexican people assembled in Mexico City’s Zocalo (main square), one of the largest in the world. Here, the president proudly waves the Mexican flag and rings the history liberty bell that Hidalgo once rang.

Mexicans show their green-white-red pride with elaborate decorations on their homes and place flags in their windows and cars. During this time, families come together and enjoy Independence Day treats.

Mexican Independence Day is an extravagant celebration in Mexico.

Update on Jessica:

Jessica is still on IV heparin infusion for the thrombosis in her right arm. Dr. Luigi has applied wrapping to the arm and she has to keep it elevated on cushions. Blood tests that were taken revealed that she does have a gram positive infection and so her antibiotics were changed to Zyvoxam and Avelox, as well as Cancidas for the candida infection. It was also necessary for her to receive a blood transfusion yesterday due to continuing low hemaglobin counts and her feeling very drained of energy. So, I guess after receiving this blood, Jessica is a little more Mexican today - and - on the occasion of their Independence Day! Viva Mexico!

Thanks for all your continued prayers for Jessica. Despite all she is going thru, she is doing well and we praise God for giving her the fortitude she needs each and every day to face any new obstacles that come her way!

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

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Saturday, September 11, 2010

Small Steps.....Remembering 9/11

Hello To All,

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

I have been having major problems with my computer here in Mexico and have been without service and non-working keys and so it has been difficult to blog.

I would like to update everyone on Jessica's progress here, but, first, I would like to take a moment to honor all those who lost their lives on this fateful day 9 years ago. To all the families who suffered tremendous loss that day and to all the fireman, policemen, and everyday citizens who responded on that fateful day, we remember you ALL today and we pray that a day like that NEVER happens again!

Jessica is still in the hospital and will most likely have to be here at least another 3 weeks. She is doing well and is still with much less pain. She has to remain in the hospital to receive IV antibiotics for an infection, as well as IV heparin for a thrombosis that was detected in her right arm during surgery for a new central line cathether. She is also receiving her ketamine boosters as well. Dr. Cantu also called in a cardiologist, Dr. Pozas, in order to do a study on her heart to rule out endocarditis, due to the infections she has experienced. It was determined that she has slight regurgitation in her tri-cuspid valve, but nothing to be concerned about at this time.

It goes without saying that she is a trooper.

She continues to take her small steps towards recovery everyday, even in the face of any problems. Thanks for all your continued prayers on her behalf.

The plan is to complete the necessary course of IV medications and then when all is clear - surgery to place a medi-port and hopefully back to the apartment. Please pray that the next few weeks go quickly, but smoothly.

What I have learned since embarking on this journey with Jessica is that everyday is another chance at taking those "small steps" that Dr. Cantu ALWAYS talks about. I have also come to realize that all things happen according to God's timing. Only He knows the road we will travel and we must truly thank Him for each new day --- as it is His gift to us as we rise each and every morning.

So, on this day, September 11th, let us be mindful of how precious life is and how we must never forget where we have been and what we have endured, because it makes us who we are and also because it is right to do so!
    Lamentations 3:20-23
    I will remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

P>S> A very special Happy Birthday to Dr. Liegner --- Jessica's amazing doctor in N.Y. We hope you have a day that is as special as you are to us!!!

In God's love, always,
Sarah Gina (Mom to 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!