Thursday, November 3, 2011

At the hospital...

Hello everyone!

I just wanted to give a quick update that I am here at the hospital and everything is going well so far. Yesterday morning our wonderful friend Elizabeth accompanied us to the hospital and I was admitted and got up into my room very quickly.

The amazing Dr. Green Shirt met me in my room and introduced me to Dr. Izquierdo, who will be assisting him with my treatment this week. In typical Jessica fashion, I had to give him a nickname as I have with all of my other doctors here! In spanish “Izquierdo” means “Left”… so he is now known as “Dr. Lefty” by me. :)

Yesterday afternoon my mexican grandma, Dr. Rainbow, came to visit and I was able to go and have a nice lunch outside by the pretty water fountain with her, which was great!

There is a gorgeous chapel here and today for the first time I was able to go downstairs for the 7:30 am mass- It was my first time being at a church service in over 5 years!!! It was so special to me! Somehow hearing a sermon, songs and the Lord’s prayer being said in spanish, made it that much more emotional and even more amazing.

God has been so good and so faithful! I am really just overwhelmed by the thought of it all sometimes. The mountains that I have seen moved, literally right before my eyes… It’s amazing, really.

As I sat there reflecting on all I have been carried through, two other fellow RSD patients were heavily on my mind- Irene Turner, who is always leaving lovely messages of hope and inspiration on my blog, had surgery to amputate her finger this morning, in hopes of alleviating her horrible pain, and Blair Webber, who has been in the hospital in Canada with RSD related complications for over 1 month now. I am praying that God will guide each of them to healing, as well as all who are suffering with RSD.

Last night I had an IV Calcium infusion and right now I am just sitting in my room visiting with some friends while waiting to start my first treatment… There was a little glitch in getting the medicine, but as always, Dr. Cantu is on top of it and hopefully it will be arriving within a few hours and we can start later tonight or early tomorrow.

Please pray for the medicine to get here, for the infusion to go smoothly and for the bad side effects that are common with this type of treatment will be minimal (or better yet- none at all!)

Thanks as always!

God bless!


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Anonymous said...

Dear Jessica --

Our thoughts are with you as you begin this treatment and we are sending you super sonic wishes for absolutely, positively NO SIDE EFFECTS AT ALL! Each day will bring you closer to home!

We were so sorry to hear of your friend's struggles with RSD . . . our thoughts and prayers are with them as well.

Until next time, love and best wishes to the one and only beautiful you! (& your Mom too!)


With love,
The Klatts

Anonymous said...

We are hoping and praying these treatments will be exactly what you needed so you may continue on your road to complete healing.

As we have been following your blog it reminded so much of this song:

What Faith Can Do (Lyrics)

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

It doesn’t matter what you’ve heard
Impossible is not a word
It’s just a reason for someone not to try
Everybody’s scared to death
When they decide to take that step
Out on the water
It’ll be alright
Life is so much more
Than what your eyes are seeing
You will find your way
If you keep believing


Overcome the odds
You don't have a chance
(That’s what faith can do)
When the world says you can’t
It’ll tell you that you can!

Faith in Action - that is what we have been witnessing. God working through so many people to bring about this healing. His ways are not our ways.

Thank your for your continued prayers for all the RSD patients. We know God is listening and answering prayers (your miraculous recovery is proof of that).

It must have been a very emotional to be in the chapel to attend mass. It brings tears to my eyes to think about it.

May God continue to bless your family and may He show the doctors the cure! I think they are getting closer!

With love and prayers,
The Turners

Anonymous said...

Hello From Sunny Florida,

I continue to keep you in my thoughts & prayers. You have grown through this journey in ways only you know. You have the strongest will,faith & hope I have ever seen and are an inspiration to so many. We are hoping you make it home to Florida soon.

Anonymous said...

Hope and praying all is going well and that you will soon be out of the hospital.

Jeremiah 32:17
 17 “Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you.

Milady said...

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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!