Never ignore a scratch, the dangers of Sepsis. Part 1

16th of July

Just a normal day, I was busy doing housework and enjoying the warm weather. Midmorning I was sorting the washing, off the line, on to the clothes horse, off the clothes horse into the airing cupboard, out of airing cupboard put away or iron.

Nothing dangerous there. Yet there was, as I hung an item of laundry over the wooden slatted shelves in my airing cupboard I caught the middle knuckle of the middle finger on my left hand.

Shit bags, that hurt, I washed it cleaned it put a plaster on because it bled and I was doing white laundry.

Thereafter I changed plasters. and kept it clean.

This is a photo taken the next day, the scratch is so small if you did not know it was there you just would not see it. In fact it is just luck that the photo has my hands in it because I was unaware of what was brewing.

It was just a normal week, Pilates , coffee with a friend , a trip to Reading nothing special, nothing out of the normal but inside me things were not normal at all.

Saturday 20th July.

I was in the kitchen cleaning up when my finger brushed against the a kitchen cupboard, it was really sore, it made me jump. I looked at it nothing out of the ordinary, just a tiny scratch with a tiny flap of skin, nothing to write home about. So I cleaned it again and put a plaster on it.

In the afternoon we took Ruby for a walk and met my friend Natalie and her family, I have mentioned Natalie before she is blind and has a guide dog. The puppy walkers who had looked after her guide dog Quala while she was in training were visiting her and we all had a chat and again I noticed my finger was sore while shaking hands.

Sunday 21st July

I noticed more that my finger was sore but as with most Sundays we have mother in law round for dinner so, just got on with things. The finger was now sore but still looked okay normal.

Monday 22nd July

I had a Drs appointment about something totally unrelated and as the finger had played me up in the night I decided to ask her about my finger too. I did and she had a look at and said “yes it does look a little swollen, just keep an eye on it and come back if you are worried” Well as we all know it is almost impossible to get an appointment with a Dr, but hey ho!

We took Ruby for a lovely wood land walk that afternoon.

I noticed that my finger was really playing up and since the morning it was beginning to look very angry. I mentioned it to hubby who was as concerned as I was. I couldn’t sleep that night my finger hurt so much.

Tuesday 23rd July

In the morning we were up early and drove to a near by walk in centre we were there by 7.45am it opens at 8am. We waited, at 7.58am a lady announced that she was sorry but she could not allow the walk in centre to open as only one of the four nurses for that shift had turn up and she had no doctors!?

Hubby and I both dialed our surgery while heading for our car, hubby got through at 8.14am he handed me the phone, when I got through I asked to see a doctor, all appointments were gone, why did I need to see a doctor the receptionist asked. I explained, I had a red and swollen finger and a new symptom my hand was going red. …she thought and then said she had one last sit and wait appointment that afternoon. I took it. As the day went on it just got worse and worse.

Okay I was getting a headache now and I was tired because I hadn’t slept properly since Saturday.

I saw the Dr, who took my blood pressure and temperature , fiddled with my finger and gave me a prescription for antibiotics and told me to keep an eye on it. I pointed out the spreading redness he said keep an eye on it and come back if it got worse. While I waited for my prescription I wandered how to manage getting an appointment the next day if I needed it and hoped the antibiotics would work.

Wednesday 24th July

No sleep, at breakfast we could clearly see a red line creeping up my arm.

See how small the scratch is, as it began to go yellow.

Hubby walked Ruby early as he had to take his mother to the hospital for a check up for her pacemaker so we decided we’d make a decision on his return.

I was by now not feeling too good so I spent the morning sitting in the sofa with feet and arm up. My friend came round and she was concerned and she suggested we mark my arm with a pen to see if it spread any further.

Hubby got home after 2pm after a short discussion we rang 111 who after listening to my symptoms told us we needed to see a doctor within two hours.

We decided that after the experience of the previous morning there was no point going to the walk in centre, we decided to ring our GP. Surgery and tell them what the nurse on 111 had said. Luckily they said we could come straight down , which we did .

The doctor called us in and at first seemed unimpressed but when he looked at my finger and the red line shooting up my arm his attitude changed.

He again took my temperature and blood pressure , the blood pressure was high. He then rang the hospital while we sat and listened, he told them what was happening and they said to come straight in and they would be waiting. Then as we left the Dr said , don’t eat or drink anything, they may be operating. This scared us both.

So we drove the 12miles to the hospital …. It was scary.

We arrived at A & E and told them we were expected, after a wait I was called in to triage. The asked a few questions took blood and put in a cannula into my arm, and put a hospital I.D. bracelet and rang the orthopedic team , who said they were on their way. Then it was back to the waiting room .

That above is the good arm!

After what seemed like an age, but was not really, three doctors arrived, and I thought I wonder if that is the team for me. It was and they called me through.

They checked me out and we really nice and calming and up beat. I did not like all the talk of operations. I was sent for x-rays which were painful because the radiographer had to manipulate my hand which made me want to cry…. But I didn’t.

After the xray the team of three were back and told me that they were admitting me as I needed 24hrs of I.V. antibiotics and they were going to make a sling for me as I was going to have my arm elevated for the next 24 hours as well.

Then they made sure where the pain was, eventually they decided they need not operate immediately . They explained that sepsis not only gets into the blood it gets into muscle and bones as well. So they decided antibiotics and elevation first.

So while I am waiting for a bed they doctors fitted me with huge sling ….and then we wait for hed. My finger and hand hurt!

It was getting late and I was very tired, there was a very strange woman sitting next to us rambling on. Then four police arrived with a very drunk and very abusive prisoner who was causing all sorts of aggrevation.

At length a nurse came along and said that there was a bed on orothpedics and they were waiting for me to start my drip. I was taken by wheel chair up to the ward, hubby came too. We were greeted by two lovely nurses who helped me get settled in.

I told hubby I would be fine and sent him home. The nurse fixed up my drip and hoist my arm up on the same pole as my IV.

Hubby had to get home because our Ruby was being looked after by our neighbours and hubby had not eaten since the morning.

For that fact neither had I . The nurse brought brought me some coffee and toast. So began a very , very long and strange night. .

More to come, tomorrow.

Author: willowdot21

Female, wife, full time mother and Grandmother. I am not as happy go lucky as I used to be but I am still bubbling along on simmer! I have three handsome sons all grown and flown.The youngest married with a beautiful wife and two sons of his own. Eleven years ago I was working, running a home, driving and socializing then bang in a split second all that was gone. I had an accident at home. I broke my back, not for the first time, I had broken it 10 years previously as well. Unfortunately this time I had broken it really badly and it was truly messed up so I had to have two operations. I was told before each operation that the outcome could mean I spend the rest of my life in a wheelchair. Still as some guy once wrote "I am still standing " yes "better than I ever was " not quite but with the help of a walking stick and as long as I do not stand or sit in one position for too long, I am still standing! Update I no longer use the walking stick . I had lots of friends before the accident but when things like this happen, you loose most of them. Their lives move on and mine stood still and so they left me behind ...I know that is just the way life is but it hurt and always will. Then I looked around and saw those who were still there for me, these friends are the roses in my garden they need to be tended well. They are the diamonds in the dust, I will of been married 50yrs plus this year . Pain and boredom are my enemies now, I have to find different ways to approach life, use my pain befriend it almost...yer right , well that is what they tell me at the pain clinic ROFLMAO ...... if only I could! I have found an outlet for my fears, frustrations and night terrors . I have started writing poetry if that name can be applied to my writing. I hope I do not come over as a moaning winger. I hope I am past all that. I also hope that you might see how the poetry is moving from very dark through the grey and hopefully in to light ?? I need to update this a little here. I have worked very hard over the years since my accident, I go to the gym regularly, I have a Pilates class and a core class once a week . The guys at the gym and my Pilates teacher cajoled, teased, bullied and encouraged me to abandon my walking stick! :) My back is no longer straight it is C shaped because of the injury and I have lost two and a half inches in height but my Pilates and Core teachers have helped me to stand up as straight and as strongly as possible. Pain and depression are still hanging on my arm but I have weapons to use against them and if I say so myself I cope well. I have made lots of new friends, real diamonds. I am also very grateful for all the support and help I have encountered here on Wordpress. Hugs and welcome to everyone who visits.

120 thoughts on “Never ignore a scratch, the dangers of Sepsis. Part 1”

      1. Yes, it is good you caught it when you did – but it seems you tried to nip in the bud several times earlier – that a doctor didn’t stop the infection from getting worse then is the very scary part!

      2. Yes I agree they all seemed to want to brush me off, luckily the orthopedic doctors at the hospital were on the ball and knew their stuff. πŸ’œ

  1. Yikes, that is so scary!! So glad the medical staff finally realized how serious it was and began treatment in time. Thanks so much for sharing your experience, Willow. I’ll never ignore a little scrape or cut again! Will be waiting for your next post about this. ❀️❀️

    1. I am so glad to hear that you’ll never ignore s tiny scrape again, I definitely will not. I hope people will see it can be so dangerous πŸ’œπŸ’œπŸ’œ

  2. Hopefully its all under control now. This happened to me at the age of 10 and then again at 20 (when I was blue-lighted to the Royal Free in London). So… when I fell on holiday recently, I spent a very long time cleaning out the cut!
    Best wishes for a speey recovery, Kim

    1. You are so right I also had a problem from acat scratch and NappySan over 40yrs ago but the midwife spotted the red line up my arm , went to Dr got me a prescription brought it back to me and then visited until I was better…that would not happen now! This time was worse but it helps make us more aware. Stay safe and thank you for reading and your good wishes. I can imagine your experience in your 20s was very scary πŸ’œπŸ’œ

  3. What a horrible experience! Being sent away or not seen by doctors is the scariest part. I thought it was bad here, but if you have an emergency like that, the doctor will see you even if there are no appointment spots free, between two other appointments.

    1. It’s getting really bad here , and scary as if you are I’ll you have to jump through hoops to be seen, and when you not well you don’t want to jump through hoops do you πŸ’œπŸ’œ

      1. You don’t. I think the way the NHS system works (or did when I lived in England), where you don’t pay for the consultation and the doctor gets paid for the number of patents on his/her list, means that they have every reason to sign up patients, and every reason for never seeing them.
        Our system where you pay for each consultation has the advantage that doctors are keen for patients to consult, but the disadvantage is that cynics like me have the distinct impression that they are quite likely to prescribe treatment that keeps you coming back, and also sending you on to specialists who just happen to be classmates they want to do a favour for.

      2. Yes there are pros and cons for both but sadly the NHS is falling to pieces. So much money is wasted. It is almost impossible to see a doctor, then they say would you like a telephone consultation…why are the doctor’s telepathic with Xray long distance vision..???

      3. Is it the doctors who answer the telephone or a secretary with a list of FAQs? And what happens when they get it wrong?
        I know people see a doctor for very little reason, often to get a sick note when they’re not sick, and paying each time ought to make you think twice. It also tells you how much a doctor earns just for scribbling a prescription for paracetemol. When you shell out 25€ you want more than that and two minutes of his/her time.

      4. It’s the secretary who answers the phone and does everything possible to dissuade you fro seeing or talking to a Dr! If the doctor rings you back and gets its wrong it’s your bad luck. I think we should all pay to see a Dr. Or at the least pay a fee for missed appointments if people do not attend appointments without a valid reason. Most people pay to see the dentist and missed appointments.

      5. I think it’s true that when we get something for nothing, the tendency is to abuse it, take it for granted and then whinge when it’s discontinued.

  4. Glad you finally got a result Willow. Your GP surgery sounds a bit like ours, and the sit and wait clinics are full within five minutes of arrival. We nearly always end up in an A&E waiting room now to see their out of ours GP as it’s been impossible to see ours.
    The 111 service has been a godsend for us having an experience with 999 who refused to send an ambulance (turned out Hubby had kidney stones).
    Hope you are more comfortable and the swelling has gone done.

    1. The NHS is so hot and miss these days, you never know if your experience will be good, bad or mixed it a complete lottery…truly it is not good πŸ’œ

  5. Reblogged this on Campbells World and commented:
    People this is a serious subject.
    i encourage strongly read.
    I’ll not go into detail here so as not to high-jack post but I had similar experience with a cat bite.
    Read and be aware.

    1. Yes cat bites and scratches can be serious too, there was a lady in with the same as me from cat scratches, and forty years ago I had the the same from cat scratches too but it was caught quicker than this time. Thank you so much for the reblog πŸ’œ

      1. Years ago, a cat that I had, bit me in freight of something, and the bites were very tiny. I, like you, cleaned them, and went on with my day. Two days later my leg was huge and purple. Honestly, the way the story went, it was kind of funny, but not. LOL. The sThings can be very serious. Things can be very serious. When I was in training for my guide dog, my trainer was constantly asking about places where I had hurt myself. I always thought he was overly concerned, but have since learned better.

      2. It is definitely not to be taken lightly, thank you so much for responding we all need to share these stories so we can all learn. πŸ’œ

  6. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord Blog Magazine and commented:
    A very important post that everyone should read from Willow Willers who recently went through a life threatening event. Sepsis.. from a very small scratch in her linen cupboard to infection spreading up her arm. Please read and don’t dismiss the early symptoms either for yourself or those you care for.. Read and take notes. Thanks for sharing Willow an essential read. #recommended

  7. I am so sorry, Willow. I have had this experience twice in my life. The first time was with my son, Gregory. We were at a beach town called Richards Bay and he got bitten by a mosquito. He was about 7 at the time and enjoyed playing in the sea. Two days later we left for Durban and I noticed the the mosquito bite was inflamed and had a bit of a head on it. I applied anti bacterial cream and put on a plaster. The next day the bit was huge but the head wasn’t bigger. I was lecturing that morning and we were in a strange city where I didn’t know any doctors. I applied more cream and after my lectures, I took him to the pharmacy. The pharmacist said he thought it was a spider bite and gave us another cream. He also gave me a needle and told me to lance it and squeeze out anything inside. I tried but nothing much came out. The next day we drove home to Johannesburg, a 7 hour drive. The bite was worse and he became feverish. I called our GP from the car and took him straight there. He gave Greg an antibiotic. I gave it to Greg at home and he vomited it all up. By this time it was evening. I put him in the car and took him straight to the pediatric ward at our hospital. Our pediatrician was called and she said blood poisoning. She cut the bite open and squeezed out a horrible sausage of pus. Greg was in hospital for three days on an IV antibiotic. I felt so guilty about it. I still do. I think I should have taken him to the hospital in Durban but we had bad advice. I am so glad you are better now. It is so scary.

    1. It is so awful Robbie. It all happens so quickly. You did your best Robbie you should not look back and wonder what if. Greg is fine now that’s all that matters, you could not of known . Sepsis is so quick hugs πŸ’œπŸ’œπŸ’œ

  8. Gosh. How frightening. I read Part 2 also. I am glad you are on the mend. A shock like that will take some getting over. Resting, watching feel good movies, keeping comfortable and letting the body slowly heal sounds necessary. Your warning about taking care of cuts is very important. We can all learn from it.

    1. Thank you for your kind words, I am getting there. I really do hope I can get the message through and help people realise how dangerous a scratch, bite , cut, or sting can be. πŸ’œ

      1. I had a cut that threatened to go septic a few years ago so can relate. Emergency trips to hospital are no fun.

  9. I’m so glad you had your hubby with you, and friends too who were all able to monitor the situation and offer their advice as well as help out and get you to the drs and on to the hospital. It all sounds really scary and I’m so glad you are on the mend now xxx

    1. Thank you Suzi I was and am lucky. It all just goes to show that we must all be very careful and vigilant when we get, biles, scratches, cuts or stings. Thank you for reading πŸ’œπŸ’œ

  10. Thanks for sharing.
    It’s useful to know how things progress and have a timescale.
    I’ve been dismissing a really painful wound on my leg (in the middle of a bruise, where I didn’t lift my leg high enough stepping over a low fence. I should remember I’m too old for high kicks now!) I didn’t even cover it, just used ice, although the dent had gone deeper than I first thought. And it was v painful for a long time
    Since it was a week ago I must have got away with it – no red streaks and swelling is going down – but I shall certainly watch such scrapes more closely in future.

  11. I too had the same experience in my 30’s just a burst blister and it was awful so I know just how you felt and know-how very quickly it escalates….so pleased you are on the mend, Willow πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you Carol, it’s amazing how many people have had similar or the same experiences. People do need to know, I hesitated to publish these two posts but I am glad I did . Thank you for reading.πŸ’œ

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