Mary Pashley died from MRSA Sepsis

Our hearts go out to Mary’s family.  This should not happen to anyone:

From the Beacon Journal

When Mary Pashley, a 75-year-old resident of Coventry Township, went into The Cleveland Clinic for open heart surgery in September, she thought she knew the risks.

But doctors had never brought up one of the biggest dangers — infection acquired during hospital stays.

And less than three months after surgery to repair a deteriorating heart, Pashley was dead.

The culprit was a bloodstream infection from a bacterium called methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). It’s one of the most problematic infections to fight because the bacterium is resistant to many drugs.

Pashley, a former realtor and performer for water-ski shows, underwent surgery at The Cleveland Clinic on Sept. 27. She had been anticipating a 10-day hospital stay. Eight days later, she went into septic shock from MRSA.

For the rest of her life, in the Clinic and in rehab facilities, she battled the infection. When she died on Dec. 14, after suffering several strokes, her death certificate listed sepsis as the cause.

This entry was posted in HA-MRSA, Ohio. Bookmark the permalink.

124 Responses to Mary Pashley died from MRSA Sepsis

  1. Cheryl says:

    I blame the hospitals and the nurses, staff and the Doctors. I have been in the hospital twice since December pneumonia the first stay I contacted a staph infection. Within two weeks I was back in the hospital. Now after a month I am sick again. I have to go have test today to see what is wrong. I was in a large hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio in a private room. Let me tell you for the cost of that room I could have been staying at the Ritz. However, the hospital rooms are so nasty and aren’t clean well after each person. I had to wash down the bathroom, bed, bed tray and chairs. The staff come in without washing their hands and forget most wearing gloves. This is way there is so many infections people are getting from hospital stays. Do see how people and staff dress and how dirty their shoes are? I think they are so used to working in a hospital they don’t care. Years ago nurses had to be inspected before going on duty. Now, you can’t tell a nurse from the housekeeper. These hospital’s need to clean up their act…the state needs to step up and take some actions….but they are paid off to turn their heads the other way. I finely was so upset by the staff not washing their hands when coming into my room I had them place a sign on my door stating you must wash your hands!!!! What can we the people do to stop all of this? I would like to know where the person that wrote they went to a clean hospital and their Doctor was very clean and careful. I would travel to that hospital.

  2. Pat says:

    We just lost our 23 year old niece to mrsa
    it does not seem real.At this time 2011 according to the article I read mrsa kills 18,200 people a year
    where AIDS kills 16,000. Of course you will not
    about it on the news.

  3. Pat says:

    We just lost our 23 year old niece to mrsa
    it does not seem real.

  4. Holly says:

    I’m bringing my Mama, Sweet Alice, home to die today. I’m washing and folding the sheets she will die on. Mama is 84. Five weeks ago she’d never been sick, hurt, in the hospital, or alone. She slipped on ice Feb 5 and broke her ankle. While in rehab C diff got her. They sent her to the ER March 8 where she arrived with no blood pressure. Severe sepsis. I’m on my way to meet hospice at her house. More later. Please pray for my strength and an easy passage for Sweet Alice.

  5. Holly says:

    I’ve been sitting here for 30 minutes trying to figure out what to say. All I can think of is “sorry for littering this MRSA website with a case of C diff septic shock” and “I don’t want my Mommy to see her arms and hands”. As much as I’d like to have one last conversation with her, I don’t want her to be lucid enough to comprehend the horrible things that are happening to her body. We had enough of that this evening when there was a delay in ‘comfort pack’ delivery – the drug drop. I won’t go into details – just make sure all equipment and supplies are ready and waiting before patient transfer occurs. I hate to ask, but does anyone have the heart to tell me whether the swelling looks this bad at our loved one’s service? My tiny, dainty Mama. I hope she doesn’t realize she’s infectious. Would you believe she’s suffering through all this with an external fixator holding her ankle in place? I do not understand how she has endured that little torture.

  6. Holly says:

    Mama died at 1:20 am at home today. She’ll be in next Sunday’s Dallas Morning News.

  7. Janice says:

    My Dad got MRSA in the hospital 6 years ago. He is one tough old guy. He is now 84, has COPD, emphysema, diabetes, is on oxygen, and most recently has had another bout of pneumonia, with a heaping of ESBL-ecoli as a result of a catheter that was left in too long (google catheter problems and you will be in shock) After a round of vancomyacin for the ESBL-ecoli, he then came down with c-diff as a result of the antibiotic therapy. I thought he had sepsis-my grandmother did –from a catheter left in too long that killed her. I am a vigilant adovcate for senior care and am on the staff for abuse in the form of neglect, being left in depends for HOURS. Our elders are being warehoused in nursing homes and receive abysmal care. Families are asked to drug their loved ones to “keep them quiet, so as not to disturb other patients” all for the staff so as not to have to investigate the problem–call button or walker out of reach. My father was refused service to get new dentures (lost by the nursing home) because he has MRSA (inactive). Once you have MRSA, you will test positive for the rest of your life. This sounds like fear-mongering when HIV-Aids was becoming more widely know with minimal information on the infection method of spreading-just fear and loathing. We know how to live with MRSA–we know what to do to keep it contained and stop spreading it–clean, clean, clean. Know what you are dealing with-educate yourself and other so they will know too. Dad suffered with severe cellulitis in both legs. I helped with wound care daily for 6 months–remember he is a diabetic–he had deep lesions on legs and feet due to extreme swelling. The wound care nurse taught me how to wrap and care for him. He could have lost feet, lower limbs and change his lifestyle forever. He is now in yet another nursing home-one that really is clean-they know what they are doing. I wipe his room down anyway. he is now in rehab planning on being home for his 85th birthday. We’ll see what happens-one day at a time. I make people wash their hands when they come in the room–put signs up too. The discrimination that comes from these infections is deplorable–we are the ones that cause it-we can put an end to it too. I hope this helps someone be vigilant in the care for their loved one…you are all they have in some cases!

  8. D. Thaxton says:

    My grandfather is currently in the ICU fighting mrsa sepsis. He had surgery to implant a pacemaker several months prior. We began to notice that he was sleeping an awful lot and eventually not wanting to get out if bed at all. After a trip to the ER and they discovered he had a staph blood infection but were unable to determine how if obtained it and antibiotics weren’t working. He had surgery to remove the pacemaker–thinking this was the site if infection. After 5 months in and out of hospital to skilled nursing home he finally came home. After a few days had very bad- worst in his life- headache and neck pain. He woke up with a sworn knee and collapsed. Back to hospital and a culture determined his knee was filled with mrsa and his blood also. They did surgery to drain the knee. He stated having trouble breathing during surgery. He has been mostly unresponsive since- 2 weeks ago. He will open eyes for a few seconds and grasp our hand briefly. As of yesterday he didn’t even do that. However hearing my grandma cry, tears ran down his face. 6 months ago he was active and happy. Now he’s got a breathing tube and feeding tube. Not sure when he contracted the MRSA but it seemed to be following the pacemaker surgery. Not sure how long he will live. He’s been fighting hard but I’ve done enough research to know only God can save him now. Please pray for us.

  9. carrie wilson says:

    My 82 year old grandpa went in for hip surgery 3 weeks ago. He did well in the hospital and was taken to our local nursing home for therapy. We visited him daily and noticed for 3 days my grandpa had not been given a bath. He became sick with pnumonia and the nursing home was doing nothing about it. So we called the ambulance and had him taken to the hospital. When he arrived at the hospital, he went into septic shock and had a slight heart attack. The doctor realized he had MSRA that had spread through his hip surgery wound. He has been in the hospital for over a week and nothing is improving. They have him on the strong antibiotics along with morphine. He is on oxygen and is not eating anything accept the fluids he gets in his IV. He cannot talk because he is so sedated. I just pray he can hear us and know we’re there with him. My grandpa would already be home if he did not contract this horrible staph infection. I love my grandpa more than anything. Besides being my grandpa, he was also my dad. He raised me from the time I was a baby. I am sickened at the fact that he or anyone else has to suffer for reasons beyond their control. Please pray for my grandpa as I will pray for you all. I just want him to come home!!

  10. Jenny says:

    My dad died March23 2011 from sepsis and C-diff. He was 84 yrs. old. He got the C-diff infection from an acute care hospital called MEADOW BROOK. He was only there for two weeks for rehab and to recoup after being in a hospital for pneumonia. He had improved greatly until he got to MEADOWBROOK. The facility was crawling with the C-diff infection upon his admittance. They only had 10 patients and 4 of them had C-diff. MeadowBrook is the worse Acute Care facility in the South. The care was far from Acute CARE. My dad was very much neglected. They dehydrated him and failed to recognize that he was in respiratory shock or had sepsis. I knew something was very wrong but they couldn’t see it. I called for an ambulance to get him out but the ambulance wouldn’t come because they said he was already in a hospital and a physician had to order an ambulance to send him to an ER. The “stupid” physicians in the place were clueless that my dad was in serious condition. By the time they sent him out to an ER, he was in respiratory failure, septic shock and had suffered anoxia because they didn’t propertly resusitate him in the ambulance. I have filed a formal complaint with the Dept of Health and Hospitals and MEADOW BROOK IS NOW UNDER A SERIOUS INVESTIGATION. The Federal government has gotten involved, too. I am also suing them for medical malpractice. I hope to shut down this place they call a certified acute care HOSPITAL. This place did not even have a code blue in place for emergencies. PLEASE DO NOT GO TO ANY MEADOW BROOK ACUTE CARE HOSPITALS if you have one in your area. My dad’s personal physician said that a person never should be dehydrated if they are in a certified hospital. THIS NEVER SHOULD OF HAPPENED TO MY DAD. I feel so sorry and sad. He died of causes that they could have and should have prevented. If you have a family member in this horrible situation, please file a complaint against your state’s DEPT of Health and HOSPITALS and then go straight to an attorney who is an advocate for the elderly. They know all too well, how elderly people are neglected and left to die even in an acute care certified hospital. The attorney who i hired said he won’t stop until justice is done…..and i won’t stop until i can make it known how horrible MEADOW BROOK Acute Care was to my dad. He was my only family since my mom died 15 yrs. ago of cancer and i I miss my dad so much….

  11. Ryan says:

    My mom died of MERSA on 05/25/11 in the hospital she had went in on a Friday and died on Wednesday. she went in with only a miner chess pain and did not come out. She went in to a coma and did not come back to me im gonna miss her but i would like to know won thing can i sue????

  12. Lori L. says:

    My husband was infected with mrsa when he had a 3 month hospital stay. He had a stroke in Dec. 2007 and is severely disabled unable to walk or eat. He battles mrsa each n everytime he goes into the hospital. Last year he had sepsis two times and septic shock, pneumonia … 5 times on life support. He’s made it through all of it. 3 1/2 years post stroke. He’s back in the hospital with slight case of pneumonia but is doing fine. Hospital wants him to go to a skilled nursing facility for the rest of his IV antibiotic treatment. They say he has to be in isolation due to mrsa. It s colonized now always shows up so no one will take him accept afilthy place 50 miles away. Sorry think again he’s not going. This hospital gave him the msra so they’ll need to keep him or find a local snf. Had enough of not getting proper care. He’s only 47 so some places won’t even help him for he’s under 60 but on medicare.

  13. Mandy says:

    My grandmother died in a hospice on 30th of June her funeral was today, I seem to be reading very similar stories on this forum. She went into hospital a pretty fit, healthy and very mentally switched on 86 year old within 5 weeks she was moved to the hospice and died 2 days later. She went in with cellulitus in her foot and a chest infection this developed into pneumonia and although there was never any mention of it cause of death on cert was stated as septicemia (treatment resistant) We are very confused as to what happened, is this the same thing as MRSA ? the doctors seemed to avoid explaining why we were watching our beloved nan die in agony and delusion right before our eyes, all they kept saying was they could not locate the infection.

  14. Jada says:

    My uncle died on Christmas eve 2008 from MRSA staph. He was 58. He had diabetes and bumped his leg and developed a sore. They did an amputation. He seemed to get sicker an sicker in the hospital and could not eat. Everyone just thought he was depressed about the amputation and did not want to get better. His amputation site never did heal and looked like dead tissue. He was due to have surgery to take more of the leg off above the knee when he went into septic shock. He was put on a respirator. He was taking to the CVICU and he got worse there. The heart doctor said he had a very bad heart attack. Three days later he was removed from the respirator.

    I am a transcriptionist at the hospital where my uncle died. I happened to type his discharge summary. The resident who dictated it said he died from liver failure, respiratory arrest, blah blah blah. Somewhere in the report he mntioned that they tested him for MRSA through a nasal swab and he was positive. This is how my uncle died. When he went into shock his INR level was extremely high, critically high (I know this from working at the hospital). This happens when small blood clots form in the blood from the MRSA sepsis and making the blood extremely thin, like water. Meanwhile the tiny blood clots destroy the organs. They dstroyed his heart. he did not have a heart attack. This has been heartbreaking to me and so hard because my family was never told this and due to confidentiality I am not allowed to say anything. What is even harder is the fact that the hospital never bothered to check him for MRSA until it was too late. My uncle suffered so much because of negligence. When my mother says that she thinks my uncle just gave up I want so bad to tell her that he did not give up but he did not have a chance.

  15. Mary says:

    My husband went in for a colon resection on 12/8/11. He was doing well after the surgery then on the 5th day after the surgery he called me to say he was being moved to another flr. because he had an elevated heart beat. When I got to the hospital he was on a dialysis machine. I was never given any info. as to why he was put on that machine. On 12/15 the brought him down to the operating room because they thought that the resection was leaking. Turns out it was not leaking. When he came out of the 2nd operation he was in a very weakened condition. He was put on a breathing tube. His blood pressure was falling rapidly. He died on Dec. 27, 2010. What is sad, is that the cancer was stage 2 and had not spread to any of his other organs. I requested his medical records from the hospital and was given very little. I went back and insisted on the complete record. I found out in reading the report that he had a perforated appendix. I don’t know how and when the appendix was perforated. Trying to find a lawyer, but most say it is too hard to prove. I have spoke to a nurse friend and she feels the appendix was perforated during the surgery. I am left with a medical report and a broken heart. I think these hospitals should have to reveal their rate of infection to every in coming patient. Let the patient decide if they want to be treat in the facility.

  16. cher says:

    I’m immunocompromised due to many illnesses I have and have wide spreads neuropathy and chronic pain. Have been getting monthly UTIs but get fungal infecs from the tmnt so they finally put me on an antibiotic which I could not tolerate but they insisted I take it all. The anti fungals didn;t help and I ended up with systemic yeast and c diff. The er saw me, gave me one diflucan and let me go. (I have yeast in all body cavities and anal secretions that are virulent and contiuous so i cant even hlod in water,. Endsed up in icu after the er let me go home as it all became worse and I developed diahrrea too, fevers the hole bit. ICU didnt; isolaet the c diff as I was unable to get it in spcimen cup so they let me go, spo am home untreated and unable to hlod even water. the er does not do a sufficient job here, and dont listen., I have med lab science and health science degrees, pre med, and know how I feel. I was told I didnt look sick enough at the er, and vitals were ok. I look well regardless of how ill i am, so one simply cant go by such a thing. My questions is if antibiotics caused this how the heck am I goign to get rid of it? I have no nutrition in me whatsoever for several days, kidney pain, whole bit. Maybe th egi doctor is the best one to call for this; hopefully cholestryene or wahtever it is may help bind the c diff and let it pass thru.. has anyone tried it as tmnt? Its usually given after antibiotics are.

  17. Mouse says:

    My dad passed away yesterday due to MRSA sepsis. He had a hip replacement in May 2011 and had an infecting previously in his right knee in 2010. He was diagnosed with MRSA in June 2011 and did the whole IV treatment and had these antibiotic beads packed into the surgical site. He was cleared of the MRSA, supposedly, in September.

    He had severe back pain last weekend to the point of delirium. He went to the ER on Sunday, went home, and was told to come back because they said the infection was in his blood. He was transferred to ICU Monday night and died yesterday. It happened so fast. By the time I made it to the ICU yesterday morning (when I was first informed of the whole situation), he was already unconscious and on life support. I’m still trying to make sense of this whole situation.

    I hope people become aware of ALL the potential implications of surgery and how quick life can be taken away. I miss my daddy so much already.

  18. Jeanette says:

    My dad too was killed by MRSA, not Only MRSA, but for FOUR medical entities conveniently not Telling us he had MRSA, not treating him for MRSA, for over a Year possibly up to Two, even though they knew, in fact they Never treated him under standard regular protocol. It caused him to linger on, suffering, feeling horrid for the rest of his life.

    He died October 2nd and I found the paper just a couple of days ago, the note from the dr. stating he had MRSA positive test result. This was brought to a lung specialist which I had gotten 2nd hand, back in April or so.

    First, pneumonia, then MRSA pneumonia. He was in the hospital over and over again. Then he went to confusion (we thought it was dementia), tiredness, extremely high white blood count (sepsis), THEN kidney failure, THEN tachycardia (which is endocartisis – also an MRSA heart infection. Then toxicity from all the drugs they were using to control an infection (not drugs for MRSA), and no one told us that either. Finally, death. We didn’t know what we were looking at, but tried to find out. They did go to medical training, didn’t they?

    I went to the lung doctor three times with him (the one who first found out), point blanked asked him and nagged on him – he never told us. He had consent to talk to me, I had POA, and he lied, lied, lied, lied. Said he had bronchiatitus. I went to the regular doctor, I went to the hospital, I went to the specialist with him. I asked them why, to do something, no one did. The MRSA lab result conveniently disappeared from their minds.

    The only dr. that tried to help was his Kidney doctor, he had an abrupt kidney failure about 6 months ago. He told him to get Vancomyacin, but his Regular Doctor told us Not to get Vancomyacin, and that he (the kidney dr.) had No business telling us to get it.

    Looking back at the pics, you can see the progression. The acute illness, until last Christmas – the last time he wanted his picture taken. His face was sad, hollowed and no expression except for flat sadness. He had lost so much weight.

    He lived for over a year with MRSA maybe two. What a strong man! He never complained, just that he didn’t feel well. The hospital knew, the doctor knew, the other doctor Should have known, and another doctor saw the paper and didn’t say anything, and lastly the nursing home he went to for rehab (we thought he was gonna get better), knew as they put him in isolation (but we thought he just had a room all to himself!).

    One way or another, they are GOING DOWN. I am going to find out The Person who put that paper in the file and forgot about it, and their license, well, say bye bye. It’s a disgrace to the medical field. Each and every licensed personnel took an oath, and they did not keep their end of the bargain.

    Thanks for letting me share – I hope this gets the word out. RIP dad. My heard goes out to all, and I see the lady right before me had a similar situation.

  19. hunter says:

    My mother has MRSA with a huge hole to where her hip replacement surgery was done since last July 15, 2011. Now they decide its not going to close or heal because of flesh not ahering or healing to the hardware (hip replacement parts) so there going to try to remove the hardware with a surgery next Tuesday December 6, 2011. She has gone through so much suffering. Please pray for my mother. The prognosis from the doctor is negative to with not to much hope for her. Shes only 69 years old and its been extremely hard to deal with. Her surgery will be at St. Lukes hospital in Jacksonville Florida. It was supposed to be done by another doctor at a better hospital but insurance won’t cover it. I jsut can’t believe this is happening to my mother.

  20. Jone says:

    My mother died Sept. 8, 2011 one day shy of her 83rd birthday. Her death certificate reads respiratory failure, sepsis, and pnemonia. She had a heart attack August4th and a ballon pump was placed while she was in the cath lab to allow her heart to rest. The cardiologist removed the balloon pump 24 hrs later. He brought his 3 year old son with him onto the CICU floor while he was making rounds. My brother and I were asked to leave the room while the procedure was performed but the doctor and staff allowed the child to stay in the room. He sat with his “blankie” in the chair where mother would be later in the day. That was a Sunday. She had bypass surgery on Wednesday and recovered nicely. She was doing well but not to the level as far as strength she should have been according to the nurses so we listened to them and arranged a stay in a skilled nursing center. She returned to th ER from there with pneumonia and sepsis. That was Aug. 30th. We watched her system being ravaged by the staph infection. Her neck was oozing infection where they had to start an IV. My siblings and I made the decision when they were not able to wean her off the ventilator to let her die with dignity. I did not leave her side for 50 hours. I miss her dearly but know she is in a better place. We were asked if she had MRSA when she was admitted initially and that risk was explained. No one used the term MRSA in talking about the systemic infection that ultimately lead to her death but as I have read more and more about MRSA I believe that she contracted it while in CICU. She retired from the hospital system where she died.

  21. k says:

    Please consider taking this advice seriously, first of all sepsis is synonymous with inflammation, so I suggest first that you take anti-inflammatory products, pineapple is a natural anti-inflammatory, it can be taken in a supplement form called bromeliad (which I suggest). Sepsis compromises your natural immunities, you will need to boost your immunities, in medicine we do so with an anti-biotic however the bacterials can resist the antibiotics, most people know this, however put little stock in simple solutions, chicken soup made from celery, carrots and the whole chicken works very well add to that echinacea will help.

  22. R.J. says:

    Reading your stories is heart breaking to say the least. I am 53 & other than a few sports injuries knee surgeries I have never been sick in my live. i have always been very active within our community coaching my kids teams & owning my own business. Until last November I had a dream life. In early November I suffered a nose injury that landed me in the er. No big deal or so we thought. A few days later I started having severe nose bleeds requiring surgery. From there I only got sicker & sicker. i have now had 6 surgeries lost part of my nose & my vision in my right eye. all from mrsa. I have been in isolation units on 2 occasions the longest for 10 days. My mrsa has now spread from my sinus area into my stomach & intentions. Nothing in the medicine arena has remotely slowed it down..I have yet to work a full week in almost 6 months. This disease impure hell & little research is being done. With all due respect to Aids & its victims you were fortunate to get high profile support. With mrsa the medical community is so afraid of mrsa & the impact on health care reputation that by continuing to deny & hide the severity mrsa is soon going to be the plague that will make Aids look like a minor disease. Over 20,000 people die from this disease per year in this country double 10 years ago & our government refuses to do anything. My fate is sealed I only hope to live long enough to see my 16 year old graduate & pick his college. As painful & heartbreaking as your stories are please keep posting & encourage others to do the same. Bogs like this is our only voice our only chance to get enough people to see reality & force action to be taken. Until 6 months ago I knew nothing about mrsa, most Americans don’t. Don’t let your overtones die in vain. Keep spreading the word. Keep up the great work painful as it is & we will make a difference. GOD BLESS YOU ALL & YOUR FAMILIES.

  23. Oh my. That is so sad! Thank you for sharing this with all of us… It is so sad that so many of the people that have commented have experiences something along these same lines. It is heartbreaking! My thoughts are with the family and friends of Mary.

  24. Regina G says:

    My uncle was in Spring Creek Nursing Home, Brooklyn NY for short term rehab. He started losing weight, showed signs of confusion, and had a red rash on his torso and arms. I mentioned this to the staff at the home and they said maybe it was the soap he used or the detergent “they” used to wash his clothes. He ended up in ICU with sepsis and went into septic shock, and many other problems. He finally ended up in a nursing home that actually read his medical chart and that is how we found out that he has a history of MRSA. He has diabetes, and a host of other problems, some of which could have been avoided if someone just took the time to pay attention. He is 85 and up until this point was independent. I want to state to everyone that nursing homes are a warehouse. Many of them only care about the money they receive. If they get into trouble they are given a small fine. The govt should force them into providing better care for our seniors. I wonder how they would feel if it was their family member.
    Thanks to this article and others like it, I will pass the word about MRSA to others.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>