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)***

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


Usain Bolt said...

Well I have a chronic pain 1 year ago and was prescribed to take vicodin for pain because pain is frequent and consistent, this is due to a chronic fibromyalgia, I really hope to stop taking drugs but at the moment are the only thing that kept me standing.

Anonymous said...

We hope and pray that things will go as planned and that Jessica will feel more benefit from the upcoming boosters.

May God continue to pour out His grace and mercy on your family.

With love & prayers,
The Turners

Rosemary and John said...

Dear Jessica and Sara Gina,

One day at a time is how you have both managed to get through these difficult days and months. You will continue to get through the days and weeks ahead and reach the other side of this storm where good health and reunions with family and friends await you.

Never a day goes by when you are not in our prayers, minds and hearts. Thanks for keeping us posted on your progress.

Sometimes, when it seems as though time has stood still, it is important to look back. Not just one day or one week ago but maybe a month ago and you will see what you have overcome! You are both so amazing. May God bless you and keep you safe and strong while His plan for you unfolds.


Rosemary and John

Anonymous said...

Hi Sarah and Jessica,
Thanks so much for letting us know how everything is going. We pray that all goes well with Jessica's blood tests and medi-port. We think of you very often (especially whenever we walk into Kerri's room and see her beautiful bear!) Belated Happy Birthday to Michelle and please let the other families there now know that we wish wonderful recoveries for them too.
Sending prayers and positive thoughts you way!
Kathy, Mark, Kerri and Erin

nick {in uk] said...

I watched your story on youtube and was moved by your bravery.I hope your recovery is swift and complete and I send you my prayers.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Fern said...

Thanks for the update. I am in continuoous rayer that these pesky problems abate and that you can begin your transition off the couch for a bed again! lol

May God continue to give you the courage and strength needed to walk this narrow road and may you feel the love of so many believers who stay on their knees until Jessica is restored.

Anonymous said...

Thinking and praying for you ...

But the Voice of truth tells me a different story
the Voice of truth says "do not be afraid!"
and the Voice of truth says "this is for My glory"
Out of all the voices calling out to me
I will choose to listen and believe the Voice of truth

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Michelle!

I couldn't leave the comment in Michelle's birthday post at first, so I left it in the post below hoping that it would be seen.

You are such a great sister for encouraging and helping your family through this time when a lot of kids would be only thinking of themselves. I know you are not looking for a reward, but you are a blessing to the heart of Jesus!

Wishing you a great birthday and as much phone, internet, vacation visits, etc. as possible until the day when all the Stevens are united again.

Your friend,
Linda Pedigo
West Lafayette, Indiana

Anonymous said...

Hi Gina and Jessica. I know Jessica will improve as she is AMAZING and so special. Very soon the butterfly will emerge and soar. Hold on to your faith and trust in him for he is always with you. hugs and kisses, Bonnie

Anonymous said...

Dearest Jessica and Gina, Sorry I haven't written for a while. Mike suffered a concussion in his soccer game at the beginning of last week and he is going to go to school today. I just want to let you know that I am praying for you and your family every day over here and you are always in my thoughts. Our rosary group keeps you in our special intentions every week. You continue to be surrounded by prayer... and, judging by the post, you continue to be a blessing to all newcomers to San Jose Tec!! :) Hang in there, ladies! I hope things get easier for you very soon! Love always, Angel xoxoxoxoxoxo

Anonymous said...

Jessica & Sarah,

Hello. Sending lots of positive thoughts. Hope your infection has ceased so you can have a speedy recovery from your upcoming procedure. See you next week. We have lots of crazy Mexico fun to catch up on.

Quote for the day:

Someday 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.

Love, Suzie & Bill

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!