Update on Mark (The Story That Must be Told)
If you haven’t read “The Story That Must be Told”, please page down and read that first…..because this is an epilogue to that story.
I was asked to meet Mark and the Indonesian doctor who did his surgery at the clinic on Sunday for a dressing change. Honestly, the wound was so boring! The incision line was clean with no signs of infection. I was amazed. Slightly disappointed that this wound clearly did not require much skill from me and yet relieved and rejoicing that Mark was healing so well. The Indonesian doctor was young and kind. I smiled at his name, “Dr. Only One Taylor”. He goes by Dr. Only.
Monday, I stopped by Mark’s home at 1 p.m. The wound had changed in less then 24 hours. The bottom (distal) end was oozing pus and the old drain sites were clearly looking infected. Just as I was there, Dr. Lee from Singapore was emailing Mark’s mom about the MRI that had been hand carried there. He wanted photo’s comparing the two knee’s. It was then that the swelling in Mark’s wounded knee really jumped out at me. Even in the 30 minutes I had the bandages off, I felt that the wound was declining. The bottom stiches looked like they were going to come apart.
Mark’s condition weighed heavy on my heart. I knew that based on the amount of jungle dirt that he was exposed too, his risk’s were huge. He was only on 1 oral antibiotic. The change in this wound was alarming to me. I recognized what a Western trained nurse, I am. I wanted a wound culture. IV antibiotics and a Dr. to look at the wound and tell me what antibiotics to start. None of this was available. Well IV antibiotics were, but we were unsure of ourselves in what to prescribe.
That evening a medical staff meeting was called. With Karin A (our most experienced nurse), Dr. Miguel (dentist and good dealing with emergencies), Rita (another nurse and close friend to Mark’s Mom), Mark’s Mom, and myself. The question was: does Mark need to fly to Singapore for 1st world treatment? Dr. Lee had advised us to cast the leg, cutting a window out over the incision, and non weight bearing for 6 weeks. He had discovered a fracture, when examining the MRI.
By this time, Mark was running a low grade fever and I think all of us in that room were united in the thought that it was time for Mark to fly. In the tropics, wounds can cause infection and go septic (into the blood stream) very rapidly. Then given the knowledge that Mark needed a cast and we don’t have fiber glass in Papua…..it just made sense for him to go to Singapore.
So 12 hours later, Mark and his Mom were flying 1st class to Singapore. Pain killers in hand. Many prayers holding them up.
Currently, Mark is in the hospital in Singapore and on IV antibiotics. They hope to remove the stiches in the next few days and then once they are confident that all the infection is gone, his leg will be casted.
I am anxious to hear and tell the rest of Mark’s story. He is an incredible young man. I am so blessed to know him, just the little bit I do. Please continue to pray for his healing. I know God has great plans for this man’s life!!!!