The Lesions Are Healing!

Despite dire prognostications from the staff nurse (I use that term as the post seems to be analogous to that in a hospital – I don’t know if it’s the correct title for a community nurse), that my lesions will never heal without compression, the evidence – in a mere four days – speaks for itself. The swelling continues to diminish, too – my right foot is now almost as small as my left. A few more days, and with appropriate wound protection, and socks, I might just be able to wear boots again.

This is the last pic, from last Thursday:-

Lesions in close-up  Click pics to view full size, Back button to return.

And this is today’s:-

Healing lesions

As you can see, the lesions have filled in and scabbed over. The dressing, rather than the blood-soaked mess it was last time, had just two small blood spots, as you can see:-

Blood spots

I might be pushing my luck saying this, but what the hell – I was right – it can be healed without the pain, the risk of infection, and massive inconvenience of compression! Did the staff nurse want to see this apparent miracle? No. She did bring me some Aquacel Ag dressings, though – 9 of them.

Anyway, I have a box of my own, so this week I’m going to change it every day. I’m convinced that will be beneficial.

The official line is that changing it every day disrupts the healing process (but as they didn’t believe I was going to heal anyway, there was nothing to lose, surely?), while my view is that changing every day, or even every other day, will stop it sticking so firmly, which is what does the damage. We’ll see.

Today, to remove the stuck dressing without damaging the scabs, I used a sterilised soft plastic wound wash ampoule as a squeegee, so the dressing wasn’t pulled off, which would have dislodged the scabs, but gently scraped off sideways. It still loosened the scabs a little on one edge, but left them in place with no bleeding.

It’s a method I devised while in APH, when faced with removing the first Aquacel Ag dressing, a huge one, from knee to ankle, that had been on for a week and was about as firmly stuck as it was possible to be (complicated by the fact that, when soaked to aid removal, these dressings turn to gel, so you can’t get a grip). Anyway, now, as then, it worked brilliantly, and as close to painlessly as I could reasonably expect.

Did I share this with the nurses? No. Why? Because they didn’t think of it, so it couldn’t possibly work! Yes, I know that seems cynical, but I also know, from experience, what their reaction would be.

If you fancy trying that, sterilise the ampoule with antibacterial gel before use, rinse well under the cold tap (you don’t want alcohol gel in a wound!), and if you can’t immerse the wound in warm water, at least keep it very wet.

Finally, as the lesions are drying out, the time has come to do things by the book, and apply the Aquacel Ag dressings wet (moistened with normal saline solution), covered by an impermeable membrane so they stay wet. This prevents sticking, which will otherwise get worse as things get drier. And what do you think the chances are of the nurses going along with this?

Yep, that’s what I thought too!

9 thoughts on “The Lesions Are Healing!

  1. what an improvement. just shows you. gone are the days when Drs and nurses know what they are doing. that’s nothing short of miraculous. i can see the day coming when you will get your socks and shoes on again Ron. well done you. i am very pleased for you.

    • I can wear socks, or my Ugly Shoes, but not for long as my skin is micro-thin at the moment as it’s shedding so much. Hopefully the dermatology doc knows what she’s doing, and she actually can fix it.

  2. Yah Hayyyyyyy 🙂 Brilliant news, and what a difference in a few days! Of course the nurses won’t want to know as they hate being wrong about anything. (Btw – they are still Staff Nurses as my Brother is one on the district).
    Now lets hope that the daily, or every other day means that everything heals nicely. I think I’d go for every other day for a couple of weeks and then, if still needed, every day until there is nothing there.
    I’m going to keep looking forward to the ‘photos of it completely healed 🙂
    Jay xx

    • Other than re-dressing, I’m keeping the nurses well away from it. I lost faith in them some time ago, and now I don’t trust them either. I don’t want them buggering up my leg just to “prove” they were right.

      Paranoid? Damn right I am! Only just stopped one of them pulling off the first scab to form last week – could have set me back months if it’s not entirely healed under it.

      It looks as if it’s about to detach naturally pretty soon – whatever is under it will be an indicator of how the rest will go. There’s no pain, so I’m confident it’s not hiding any infection. In fact, there’s not much pain at all today – unlike the bloody weekend!

      The speed things are going I don’t think the fully healed photos are that far away – as long as nothing goes wrong. Must take care to ensure the nurses don’t neglect their hygiene – I don’t want them bringing me any more infections!

  3. Things look like they’re turning a corner for you and I’m so glad.

    Ive also had disasters with attempts at compression. I’ve been speaking to my lymphoedema team and they are going to to do some skin improving wraps to help the skin condition now I’ve stopped leaking. I’ve been told this could rapidly improve the thinness of the skin and the dryness: with the aim that the skin won’t split so easily if knocked, for example.

    Perhaps you could ask for this when you are a bit further down the road?

    Congratulations on the improvement. I don’t think that the docs and nurses understand the boost you get when you see things improving and can look to a better future.

    • I do realise I could be back to square one at the drop of a hat, so I have to make sure that neither I nor the nurses – who I’m sure are responsible for my repeated infections, including MRSA, after all, until very recently, I’ve seen no-one else but them – do anything that might make me worse.

      I’ve given the lesions a couple of hefty knocks lately, the last time on Friday, so I need to make something to protect them. Not hard.

  4. Crikey that looks so much better, good work. But really, just don’t tell the nurses, they are already fuming that you know more about your body than they do and because you have now had the sheer audacity to get your legs healing yourself, they will be hunched like vultures ready to joyfully leap on any set back, big or small and claim that they were right all along. Been there.

    I wonder if when you have had a period on the daily or every other day changes if getting some air to the skin and maybe, some sunshine (yeah, I know, still winter and I’ve not got experience of what you are going through) but a bit of sun and air at the right time can do great things for skin sometimes.

    The wicked side of me says to mention that once the legs are healed up enough for you to gain some mobility, then you can demonstrate how well your method has worked by kicking these arrogant nurses and medics up the backside. Every kick could be a reminder for them to listen to the patient.

    Lucy 🙂

    • Oh, they’ve already tried to claim the credit for it, but I wasn’t having it! For months they’ve complained – justifiably – that all they could do for me was change the dressings. They weren’t curing anything, just treading water.

      So when they tried to grab the glory, I mentioned that and met with a furiously angry denial!

      The thing is, if they’d listened to me from the outset, and asked the hospital what they did in April when they cured my huge leaks the first time, I’d have been spared a year of hell. But they wouldn’t do that.

      And when the consultant wrote to them in November, telling them what I needed, they lied to me and told me he hadn’t. They didn’t admit he had until last Friday. And then they wanted praise from me! No way.

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