Stacy's Story: For those of you who don't know Stacy, in early December she was a healthy 22-year old young woman. She interviewed for her dream job (Paws with a Cause), and was preparing for her last final exam. Stacy was receiving her bachelor's in zoology from Michigan State University. Upon graduating, Stacy and her fiancé were going to start planning their wedding. Stacy lived a normal life, filled with a passion to work with service dogs.
Wednesday, December 4th, 2013, Stacy was experiencing flu like symptoms. By Saturday the 7th, she was at Urgent Care and sent home with instructions to go the the ER if symptoms worsened. Sunday, December 8th, Stacy was driven to Charlotte Hospital's ER (Hayes Green Beach). With a life threatening low platelet count and doctors unable to make a diagnosis after blood tests, Stacy was transported by ambulance to University of Michigan Hospital, in Ann Arbor. Upon admittance to the ICU, Stacy was given antibiotics to fight an infection; the type of infection was still unknown. Monday morning to mid afternoon everything went downhill. Doctors heavily sedated and put Stacy on a ventilator due to her body going into septic shock from the infection. Monday afternoon, doctors diagnosed Stacy with a severe staph infection. The infection caused a "vegetation" in the mitral valve of her heart, creating a hole on her valve. With every beat of her heart, the infection "flicked off" to other parts of her body. The infection was now in other organs, the most concerning place was her brain. Saturday, December 21st, doctors wanted to repair/replace Stacy's heart valve. There was a delay to take her off the ventilator because of the heart surgery.The risk of bleeding on the brain was too high, so they called off surgery and took Stacy off the ventilator instead. A few hours off the ventilator, Stacy was doing fine. She was able to talk to us, show her bubbly personality and eat! Recovery looked better each day. She was able to sit up in bed and occasionally stand with support. Stacy was focused on doing what she had to do to go home. Christmas Eve, around 1:00 a.m., Stacy was unresponsive. She was taken down for an emergency CT scan to reveal an aneurysm burst (stroke), causing massive bleeding on the brain. She was admitted into surgery to get rid of the bleeding and relieve pressure on her brain. Currently, Stacy is semi-responsive. Her brain needs time to repair itself from the stroke she suffered; the time length is uncertain. She is on a new and better antibiotic to target the staph infection and stop the spread of the infection in her body. This antibiotic will also minimize the remaining aneurysms in her brain. Each day she's working to come off the ventilator and allowing her brain to heal. Once her brain is healed, Stacy will have to undergo heart surgery to repair/replace her heart valve. UPDATE (1-30-2014) A tracheostomy was put in place to free her of the ventilator; hopefully making her more comfortable and to prevent damage to her vocal cords. January 24th Stacy underwent her second round of brain surgery. A growth was found on the back of her brain; another aneurysm. If it burst, the results would be lethal. Surgery has its effects. Post-surgery, Stacy is still recovering. Small improvements and hopefully a transfer to a neuro rehabilitation center soon!
Stacy is constantly surrounded by her family and fiancé; her father taking a month off work and her fiancé taking a leave of absence to stay by her side. With constant visits from her mother and older sister, Stacy is never alone. With the prayers and support of family, friends and loving strangers, and by the grace of God, Stacy will pull through this rare case and come home to live the life she's been planning. MAJORITY of the donations will be going towards MEDICAL costs. A small portion will support Stacy's expenses she is unable to pay while in the hospital. The deductible for 2013 is $5000, and doubles for 2014. Donations will also go towards the cost of Stacy's rehabilitation in the future.
Stacy's medical expenses are something my parents are struggling with, mostly because my mom has a large share of her own from her battles with breast cancer.
Please know, we appreciate every donation, every prayer, and every kind gesture. We wish we could thank you each personally. I hope Stacy will be able to do it herself when she recovers.