A Georgia woman fighting a flesh-eating disease is refusing to take pain medications during some procedures, partly because of her personal convictions, her father said.
The patient despises the use of morphine in her treatment, despite its effectiveness at blocking her pain, her father said in a Friday online update on his daughter's condition. Her graduate-school study of holistic pain management techniques leads her to feel she's a "traitor to her convictions" when she uses drugs to manage her pain.
He also said the morphine has been making his daughter groggy, confused and has given her unpleasant hallucinatory episodes.
She developed necrotizing fasciitis after cutting her leg in a fall May 1 from a homemade zip line over a west Georgia river. Her left leg, other foot and both hands have been amputated.
On Tuesday, her condition was upgraded from critical to serious, which is seen as a major victory that cannot and should not be diminished. The development came shortly after she had her first successful skin graft.
The nurse who completed Aimee's dressing change was astonished at the patient's insistence to avoid morphine during the procedure, as was her mother and father.
The bacteria that attacked her wound releases a toxin that destroys skin, muscle and a layer of tissue below the skin known as fascia.
Despite the painful skin grafts, she has crossed several milestones in recent weeks. She can breathe on her own, she no longer needs dialysis and she's now able to eat on her own, her father wrote. Although her major organs are all functioning well, the patient still needs supplemental nutrition through a stomach tube.
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