I don't mean to scare anyone with the title of this post, but I just went through a very bad case of Necrotizing Cellulitis and want people to know about it.
I have suffered from boils all of my life, and have learned how to successfully treat them and stay clean when handling them. A boil began on my left inner thigh on Friday, Aug 29, by Monday Sept 1st it was the size of a golf ball, bright red and hot to the touch. I felt very ill Labour Day weekend and slept for 24 hours at one stretch.
Went to the local ER on Labour Day-spent the 5 hours in the waiting room slipping in and out of consciousness as the fever raged. Diagnosed as "a boil" (gee no kidding!) Dr. L--
decided not to lance, just to treat with antibiotics IV. Left ER with a saline lock in my left arm and instructions to "come back @ the same time tomorrow" for another shot of IV antibiotics. Awoke to undescribably agonizing pain, inner thigh hot and swollen to the size of a football, fever of 104 degreed F. Went immediatly to ER. Waited 3 hours to see a Dr. When the physician saw my leg, he immediatly called a noted plastic surgeon, Dr G--. I had blood work, urine, CT scan and Ultrasound (and wow did that hurt!!) and was whisked into surgery. My skin at the sight was the colour of an eggplant, there was gas gangrene and necrotized tissue when the area was opened. Dr. removed an area about the size of a dessert plate, down to the muscle below. Thank heavens the muscle had not become involved! Later we learned that a blood culture identified the culprit as Clostridia, a particularly bad bacteria which includes the botulism and tetanus strains. My Dr told me today that if I had gotten the infection in my bloodstream, I would have died. At this point I have an open wound 5" x 5" which has to be dressed everyday, (visiting nurse), and a profound sence of how close I came to slipping away. I'm still shaken up.