Gary Johnson

First post: Oct 9, 2018 Latest post: Oct 28, 2018
As many of you know, Gary underwent back surgery in mid August and shortly after was hospitalized for staph infection. Recovery was underway and everything seemed to be going in the right direction for the first 2 to 3 weeks.  The last couple of weeks we noticed a change. It was getting harder for Gary to get up, more pain when sitting or standing (with a walker), until it was unbearable. Saturday, Oct. 6 we went to the ER to try to get some answers. After an MRI, the staff at Mayo/Mankato advised the infection had returned and an abcess was in front of his spine in an area that has a lot of vascular stuff around it. Mankato said they don't have the expertise to handle the case, so Gary was transferred to Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis.  After many, many doctors, nurses, and other care staff have reviewed his case, it was decided that two more surgeries were necessary.  Today, 10/9, the surgeons will carefully remove the abcess that is nestled among veins and such and also insert a cadaver bone that will replace the disc that is gone. (His vertebrae are currently rubbing bone on bone.)  This is done thru the belly. They will start growing cultures in the lab to make sure the antibiotics are the right ones.  On Monday they plan to go thru his back and fuse the L5/S1/S2 area. 

Needkess to say, this was an unplanned detour to getting Gary back to health. The Abbott staff has done a good job of managing his pain, so that's been a really good thing.  Now we just pray these highly skilled surgeons can work their magic and we can get Gary back on his feet. It's been a long road, and we know there are more challenges ahead, but know this, too, will soon be a memory.  Prayers are welcome and appreciated.  I will try to post updates as much as possible.