Bruce's Guillian-Barre/Heart Fund

My husband was born with subaortic stenosis.   He defeated the odds 21 years ago after a series of heart surgeries to correct his condition which was complicated by staph infection which required more surgeries and IV antibiotics.  As a result of all this he has diabeties and lost his gallbladder.  After a 10 year battle with symptoms of Afib, my husband, Bruce, was sent to Duke Medical Center with acute heart failure on October 5, 2014.  A new pacemaker was inserted on Oct. 8 and to make him pacemaker dependent an AV Node Ablation was done on Oct. 10, 2014 .  During this time, he had 40 pounds of fluid that was coming off slowly.  He was sent home with this fluid and it took over a month to get this fluid off.  He was just beginning to feel better from these procedures the beginning of December when he was set back with fatigue and tiredness.  On Saturday, Dec. 6, he woke up with soreness and achiness and was walking very slowly.  By Dec. 8, he was walking by holding on to walls in the bathroom.  I got my mother's walker from the attic and he could walk with this.  After many visits to the ER and doctor's office, no one knew what was wrong.  By Thursday, he woke with up on the floor with a servere headache, right sided numbness and right face droopiness.  I called 911.  He was diagnosed with a stroke.  He was discharged from the hospital, but had to reenter the next day at which time they said he was having another stroke.  By this time, the left side of his body started to be affected.  By the end of the week, his eyeballs were bobbing up and down and his face could not move.  I went through WWIII to get him a bed at Duke Hospital and in less than 24 hours of being admitted, he was diagnosed with Guillian-Barre Syndrome (GBS).  He received four treatments of IVIG and showed slight improvements and was told he had plateaued and was sent home just before Christmas.  Two days later, on Christmas Day, he fell three times. By Christmas night, he was coughing all night.  The next day was a trip to the primary care doctor where he was given antibiotics for pneumonia.  Two days later, on Sunday, he could not walk with a walker, was wheezing, confused and listless.  His suger spiked to over 600.  After calling the doctor at Duke, they said the GBS may still be an issue.  Not wanting to waste time, I went to Pitt County, NC, an hour away and called 911 for an abulance to take him to Vidant Medical Center.  He was in respiratory failure and very close to being put on a ventilator.  He stayed there for 16 days and did finish the four week duration of GBS.  He went to inpatient rehab where he learned to walk with a walker, how to dress himself, and how to get around such as in and out of a car.  Vidant made sure we went home with all the right equipment and he now goes to out-patient rehab three times a week for PT.  He is still on antibiotics for pneumonia.  I have been out of work as a special education teacher for 12 weeks and have used up all my vacation days, sick days and personal days.  I am returning to work on Feb. 2 and leaving the care of my husband to my son who goes to college four days a week.  Our neighbors will be sitting with him in the mornings while my son goes to school because he still needs 24 hour care.  We have accummulated many doctors bills over the years and have no way to pay them.  I am not getting a pay check in January and Bruce's disability check does not pay our house payment.  We are starting to get into a desparate situation so any help we could receive would be very much appreciated.


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Liza Turley Ingram 
Pollocksville, NC
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