Kim Gerstenberger

Kim Gerstenberger
Survivor

I had a cervical fusion. I went home two days later. The following day, I was rushed to the hospital with uncontrollable pain. (Sepsis and Surgery) For four days, I begged to have a MRI of my neck done. Instead, I was put in palliative care and given more opioids that did not control my pain. Finally, on the fifth day, I phoned the surgeon and demanded he do something. I had MRI done the following day.

Surgery followed to drain a large seroma and to restitch all my internal stitches it had torn as it grew. Two days later I was sent home with a blood pressure of 89/59. My husband did not want me to leave the hospital but they said a nurse would check on me in 2 days. The nurse did come and called 911 because I was altered with ketoacidosis. My breathing was fast, I had abdominal pain and low blood pressure. I was admitted at noon. At 8 pm I was rushed to surgery and given a 90% chance of dying. I had pneumonia, multiple system organ failure and an illeus had formed in my colon. (Sepsis and Pneumonia) I was butchered and had a right hemi colonectomy. I refused to agree to surgery, so my husband overruled me. I was in the hospital a month. This was 15 months ago. I still suffer from memory loss, nightmares, fatigue, insomnia, lack of balance, severe depression and heel ulcers I wish I had died. No one understands and everyone thinks I made a miraculous recovery. I did not. I am no longer myself. I don’t recognize me anymore. I was butchered. I can’t live like this nor do I want to. I wish I had died.

If you or a loved one are experiencing feelings of hopelessness, depression, or thoughts of suicide, please seek help from a professional mental health expert. We also have resources on our Mental Health page.