a medical team has been praised for helping a woman fight off numerous and potentially life-threatening infections.
Michaela Hiscutt has thanked the infection prevention team at Queen Alexandra Hospital after a bowel problem made her susceptible to infections.
In 2015, a blood clot in her bowel meant she had to have seven metres of it taken out and a Hickman line inserted to give her nutrients.
The mum-of-three relied on peripherally inserted central catheter (Picc) line which, along with the Hickman lines, caused infections.
Michaela, from Fareham, said: ‘Two years ago I had a pain in my stomach which was so bad it make me physically sick.
‘I was rushed to QA Hospital by my husband Tom and it turned out I had a blood clot in my bowels. I was rushed to theatre and woke up three days later in critical care.
I cannot praise the NHS and Debbie’s team enough.Michaela Hiscutt
‘My family was told I might not make it. I only have two metres left of my bowel now.’
To help ensure she got the nutrients she needed, Michaela had a Hickman line inserted. But it was prone to getting infected. The 47-year-old added: ‘The first infection I had, I was totally unaware that I was even ill.
‘All I knew was that I felt very depressed. Apparently I had a temperature but I didn’t even know I had one.
‘My dietician suspected the Hickman line had become infected and by then it felt like something was crawling underneath my skin.’
Michaela immediately went to infection control at QA Hospital, in Cosham, and was seen by Debbie Keyte, the lead nurse for infection prevention.
She was able to detect the infection before it could develop into sepsis.
But the problem continued with a further three Picc lines and four Hickmans getting infected.
The teaching assistant said: ‘Unfortunately, I am prone to them. They have been quite frightening experiences.
‘One time my husband and I went to Cardiff with my daughters and I started to feel sick and dizzy and my ear was particularly painful.
‘The next day my leg started hurting and my husband took me straight to the A&E where they took blood. It turned out that I had yet another infection in my Hickman line and in my hip.’
Michaela said if it was not for the infection prevention team at QA Hospital, she might have died due to the seriousness of her infections. She praised Debbie and the team for their exceptional care.
‘I am not supposed to be alive,’ she added.
‘I know I am so fortunate. I cannot praise the NHS and Debbie’s team enough.
‘Debbie has given me the out-of-hours mobile number and Terry Joy, one of the senior infection prevention practitioners, has been brilliant.
‘He has done my Picc line and is always calm and reassuring and always talks me through it because he knows how much I hate having it done.
‘Although I can now eat small amounts of food, I still need my Hickman line for nutrients. I will need it for the rest of my life but that is okay.
‘My family have helped me through this a lot. They are extremely important to me and we have been on this journey together.’