Zachariah Reynolds


My son was a loving and caring person that would give the shirt off his back to those in need. He slipped up and someone injected him with methamphetamines. The arm was very red and edematous on the 12th of December and he went to the hospital by ambulance seeking medical care. The doctor does a review of systems that is not accurate in describing how my son’s arm actually looked. He states my son was oriented to person and place. The doctor did not think he saw any cellulitis, but non the less as he put it, he did an ultrasound to rule out a deep vein thrombosis. (Sepsis and Bacterial Infections, Sepsis and Cellulitis)

The ultrasound revealed diffuse edema to the subcutaneous tissue to the arm and into the arm muscle and they could not visualize his ulnar or radial veins. They did not further tests. He was vomiting, unable to walk, with a WBC of 47.4, a BUN of 52, and a creatinine of 2.10. He was in sinus tachycardia at least once, but was never hooked up to ECG monitoring. They did two seta of vital signs on him during his 4-hour stay, which showed an elevated blood pressure. The doctor admits that the hand to the affected arm was cool to touch.

The ambulance drivers stated they believed his arm was infected. The doctor gave him fluids for dehydration and Zofran for the nausea intravenously. The doctors against medical advice is written as follows. He never mentions if my son was oriented at the time of this conversation and he states he spoke with my son extensively about the need for him to stop using methamphetamines, the possible need for admission, and to continue doxycycline by mouth and to drink fluids and keep his arm elevated, because the doctor thought this was a simple irritability from the vein being missed.

I have contacted attorneys, who say my son went against medical advice, yet he was not oriented enough to make that decision and there are no signed papers. He could not even sign himself in. The other disheartening thing I hear is that my son did this to himself, so it is very likely that people in Oklahoma would not want to punish the doctor. I am a retired nurse and I have treated people in different conditions that they brought on themselves and I have had patients fill out actual against medical advice forms that are very detailed. My son went to sleep from the zofran the doctor gave him that night and by 6 am, we were going to another hospital.

They did all they could with broad spectrum antibiotics and sent him to another hospital with a ICU bed. They had trouble finding a hospital due to covid. His kidneys failed, his arm was opened for compartment syndrome, the labs from his arm revealed the necrotic tissue. He was sedated and on a ventilator and at times improved. He also went into DIC and we watched our son suffer from the 14th to the 16th. (Sepsis and Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation (DIC) )

I see him over and over in my mind to this day. His last words to me were mama I am sorry but I am dying. My son made one mistake and for that he was judged in my community. The funeral was disrespected and our Church gave us no emotional support, which adds to this pain. He was beautiful to all of God’s creatures and there to cheer everyone up. The first hospital sent him home unable to even walk. I hope that no mom or dad ever have to face losing their child to negligence and what I fear was a lack of concern by the doctor. I would be willing to share my story nationally, so that no-one ever is misdiagnosed again, resulting in the loss of a loved one. I have started a petition in Oklahoma that would require doctors to be trained in sepsis awareness and be required to fill out a complete detailed AMA form.

Source: Lesa Kay Reynolds, mother

Send us Your Story
Learn More about SepsisSupport Faces of Sepsis