Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

April 16, 2013

Woman contracts deadly bacteria

Grateful to be alive

VALDOSTA — It was just an ordinary day for Marjorie Anderson, 76, but around 6 o’clock in the afternoon, she noticed that the end of her finger was blood red. As the evening progressed, her finger started to hurt and by the time she went to bed, she had a fever with chills.

“It was very painful. I thought about calling 911, but I didn’t,” she said. Her husband, Ron, said he tried to ice her hand down but it wasn’t helping, so he took her to the South Georgia Medical Center emergency room around 4:30 a.m.

“The lady doctor on duty took one look at it and knew right away what it was. I thought I was going to get some medicine and go home, but I stayed for 10 days,” she said.

SGMC called her primary physician, Dr. Ben Hogan, and surgeon, Dr. Kendrick, and reached out to infectious disease specialist Dr. Willie Saurina. Just a few hours after she arrived, Anderson was in surgery.

“We called the preacher. We called everybody in Sunday school. We got everybody praying for her,” said Ron. “She had these red streaks going all the way up her arm by the time they took her in surgery. She could’ve died.”

The physicians acted quickly as Anderson had clear signs of MRSA, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, known as the flesh-eating virus. The virus can enter the blood stream and kill the patient, or can kill living tissue that then has to be removed. Fortunately for Anderson, the virus was caught quickly.

“At first, Dr. Kendrick was going to take my finger when he did the surgery. They did surgery twice and cleaned it out, and cut me from the tip of my finger halfway down my hand. Dr. Saurina also marked the red marks on my arm where they stopped right below my shoulder and he would come in and check to make sure they hadn’t moved,” she said.

Anderson has been out of the hospital for two weeks, but her finger, the middle finger on her right hand, is still very swollen and scabbed. She is still on antibiotics and it will take some time to heal, but she is thankful that it looks like she won’t lose her finger or part of her hand.

“I really have no idea how I got it. I had shattered a glass in my kitchen and picked up all the little glass pieces, but I didn’t really notice that I had a cut on  my finger.”

Saurina said that even the tiniest opening into the body can be invaded by MRSA, which spreads very quickly.

“We tend to think our kitchens are very clean, but they really aren’t. There are all kinds of bacteria, especially in our sinks. It may look clean but there’s a difference between clean and disinfected,” he said.

Saurina said the physicians took the team approach to caring for Anderson, which is one of the reasons she recovered so well. He said all of the physicians knew what they were dealing with and took action immediately or the outcome could have been much worse.

“Dr. Saurina knew the right antibiotic to treat it with and get it under control. A couple of inches more, and who knows ...,” she said.

Anderson is the organist at her church, Victory Baptist, and her husband said he’s sure she will get a standing ovation when she returns to playing.

“I just want people to know that SGMC has great doctors right here and you don’t have to go anywhere else to get taken care of,” said Anderson.

Ron added, “If I had carried her out of town to Atlanta or someplace long distance, she wouldn’t have made it. She wouldn’t still be here.”

1
Text Only
Local News
  • 140724-LAT1.jpg Little Actors Theatre ready for summer show

    Since 2004, the Little Actors Theatre has provided a place for children ages 6 to 19 to express themselves through acting.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072414-MichelleNunn003.jpeg Michelle Nunn visits Valdosta

    The day after learning that her Republican challenger would be David Perdue, Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful Michelle Nunn kicked off her Common Sense and Collaboration Tour Wednesday by meeting with business owners in Atlanta, Athens and Macon and continued her tour Thursday morning by visiting the David S. Waller Unit facility of the Boys and Girls Club of Valdosta.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • lunch.jpg Valdosta One Lunch feeds summer-hungry kids

    Hunger is a concept that many people associate with third-world countries, not their hometown. However, in Valdosta, hunger is real. To combat this hunger, a group of Valdostans have created Valdosta One Lunch, a program that distributes bagged meals to children in need.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • thumbs up.jpeg Moody squadron commander reaches milestone

    The 75th Fighter Squadron commander hit a career milestone July 17, by surpassing 3,000 flight hours in an A-10C Thunderbolt II.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • water.jpg New equipment expected to deal with Lowndes water violations

    The Lowndes County Commission’s recent approval of $1.6 million for water-treatment equipment is expected to counter a past series of water-quality violations within the county.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 142314-Goodwill.jpg Goodwill hosts the Mexican Consulate

    Mexican citizens living in South Georgia have spent this week lining up at the Valdosta Goodwill to meet with the Mexican Consulate to obtain Mexican government issued identification.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140723-Tree001.jpg Chamber plants 100th centennial tree

    Founded in September 1912, the Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber of Commerce is one of the largest chambers in the state.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140723 - Operation M#10E3C7.JPG Veterans First

    With Moody Air Force Base expecting to lose 300 to 400 personnel due to government cutbacks, area organizations are working with military personnel about to enter the civilian work force.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lowndes increases millage rate

    For the first time since 1999, the Lowndes County Commission voted Wednesday to increase the millage rate.

    July 24, 2014

  • dui memorial 1.jpg Memorial honors woman killed in DUI case

    More than a week after the man responsible for her death was sentenced to five years in jail, a memorial sign has been placed at the site where Sheila Foster-Lamb was hit and killed by an impaired driver while she was on her way to work.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

Top News
Poll

School starts again in about two weeks. What do you think?

It's still summer. School starts too soon.
Seems like the right time to return.
Abolish summer recess. Make school year-round.
     View Results