Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sentinel Article,Carlisle,PA, Dec.10,2009

Enola man battles Cogan's
John Stouffer had his leg amputated this week, but keeps trusting God.
Leah Farr, Sentinel Correspondent, December 10, 2009
Last updated: Saturday, December 12, 2009 5:17 PM EST
Life has been an extreme test of faith for 32-year-old John Stouffer. The Enola man has spent more time in hospitals than at home since he was diagnosed with a rare, but fatal, vascular disease seven years ago.
Stouffer has Cogan’s Syndrome, a terminal illness that affects the vascular system, eyes, ears and other body systems over time. Doctors have been unable to determine how Stouffer contracted the disease.Since his diagnosis, he has battled infections, hearing loss, strokes, heart attacks, the removal of all of his teeth and a barrage of other health problems.On Wednesday, the 1996 Cedar Cliff High School graduate underwent surgery to amputate his leg below the knee as a result of complications from the disease. The night before his surgery, Stouffer said he was apprehensive, frustrated and facing a grim reality.But he also held onto his faith.The former rescue worker and EMT believes it is God and the goodness of local people that have kept him going through his darker times.Last year, Stouffer received nearly $1,000 in donations from Sentinel readers who heard his story and wanted to help alleviate the financial burden of paying for constant medical care.Those random acts of kindness mean the world to a man who has lost so many things.“There is so much going on in the world, going on with the economy,” Stouffer said between phone calls from doctors and well wishers. “The fact that people were taking the time for me when there are so many other organizations to give to ... the fact that people chose to help me with their time and money, it makes me want to fight a little harder.“There are times when I’m fighting this disease and there is no one else on the planet who get’s it. But then people step up. It’s incredibly motivating,” he says.While Stouffer has health insurance through Medicare and his former job with the state House of Representatives — he drove in motorcades for visiting politicians and worked for House Majority Policy Committee Chairman Roy Cornell and the House Republican Caucus — his copays and medical bills continue to rise astronomically every year.To help with the escalating costs, Stouffer also receives support from members of the Baughman Memorial United Methodist Church, who have created a “Caring for John Fund.”The church, where Stouffer attends when he is physically able, administers the fund to cover expenses for things like prescription drug costs and ambulance fees. Since its inception, more than $11,000 has been raised.But the need is still great. Stouffer recently acquired MSRA, a drug resistant bacterial infection, requiring him to have two IVs of antibiotics every day. That costs $517 a day.He will soon require intensive physical therapy and in-home help as he recovers from his recent amputation.With all the challenges he continues to face, Stouffer says he finds strength in the conversations he has with God and a handful of close friends who have stuck by him.Just recently, members from the New Cumberland firehouse, where Stouffer served as a rescue worker before he was diagnosed with Cogan’s Syndrome, brought him a shadow box with his jumpsuit and badges as a thanks to Stouffer for his service to the community.Throughout his disease Stouffer says he has learned not to take things for granted. Two years ago, doctors gave him only a year to live, but he has defied the odds and will continue to fight the battle against his fatal disease.Stouffer said his struggles have also helped him learn the importance of living by a higher moral code.“Take responsibility for your actions, treat people the way you want to be treated and stand by what is right. That is what I am going to do with this life I’ve been given.”
Checks to help Stouffer can be written to Baughman Memorial United Methodist Church with “Caring for John” in the memo line.
For more information or to make a contribution, contact the church at 774-2005 or visit www.cogans.org.

Friday, November 20, 2009

VRE - Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococcus

Vancomycin-resistant enterococcus (VRE) is the name given to a group of bacterial species of the genus Enterococcus that is resistant to the antibiotic vancomycin.[1] Enterococci are enteric and can be found in the digestive and urinary tracts of some humans. VRE was discovered in 1985[2] and is particularly dangerous to immunocompromised individuals. VRE species have an enhanced ability to pass resistant genes to other bacteria. While infection of healthy individuals is uncommon, it is possible that they could be colonized with newly-resistant bacteria.
There are six different types of vancomycin resistance shown by enterococcus : Van-A, Van-B, Van-C, Van-D, Van-E and Van-F. Of these, only Van-A, Van-B and Van-C have been seen in general clinical practice so far. The significance is that Van-A VRE is resistant to both vancomycin and teicoplanin, Van-B VRE is resistant to vancomycin but sensitive to teicoplanin, and Van-C is only partly resistant to vancomycin, and sensitive to teicoplanin. In the US, linezolid is commonly used to treat VRE, as teicoplanin is not available.
VRE can be carried by healthy people who have come into contact with the bacteria. The most likely place where such contact can occur is in a hospital (nosocomial infections), although it is thought that a significant percentage of intensively-farmed chicken also carries VRE.[3],[4]
In 2005, Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG), a strain of L. rhamnosus, was used successfully for the first time to treat gastrointestinal carriage of VRE in renal patients.[5]


Pseudomonad literally means 'false unit', being derived from the Greek pseudo (ψευδο 'false') and monas (μονάς / μονάδα 'a single unit'). The term "monad" was used in the early history of microbiology to denote single-celled organisms.
Because of their widespread occurrence in water and in plant seeds such as Dicots, the pseudomonads were observed early in the history of microbiology. The generic name Pseudomonas created for these organisms was defined in rather vague terms in 1894 as a genus of Gram-negative, rod-shaped and polar-flagella bacteria. Soon afterwards, Pseudomonads were isolated from many natural niches and a large number of species names was originally assigned to the genus. New methodology and the inclusion of approaches based on the studies of conservative macromolecules have reclassified many strains.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is increasingly recognized as an emerging opportunistic pathogen of clinical relevance. Several different epidemiological studies indicate that antibiotic resistance is increasing in clinical isolates.
nucleator of ice crystals in clouds, thereby being of utmost importance to the formation of snow and rain around the world

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Osteomyelitis? This is what I been fighting for the last several months, Weeks, and Days. Trying my hardest not lose anything by amputation surgry. Please pray or take a second about myself and my family. it gets frustrating around here. Each day it's a different illnes or I will be dead in next 36 to 72 hours.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Cogan's Syndrome

Cogan's syndrome = Syndrome of interstitial keratitis characterized by abrupt onset of vertigo, tinnitus, and usually rapid development of bilateral deafness.