Keith W’s Story

Male 2I have no way to tell this story but to start at the beginning. My husband Keith, had been feeling very bad, and through a series of visiting the dr was diagnosed with severe bilateral pneumonia, with a lung mass, and placed in the hospital for a week. He was sent home with continued IV antibiotics, which I was administering at home. You see, I am a Paramedic, and have many years experience in EMS and felt comfortable taking care of my sick husband, I had many times before, why should now be any different. Thursday following my husband’s release from the hospital he had an appointment with one of his dr’s. I was at work, called to check on him, and he said the dr had removed his picc line and placed him on an oral antibiotic. He asked me to bring it home from the pharmacy, and I picked it up on my way home. He was to take the first pill the next day. I called him from work to check on him, it was Friday and we had plans for the weekend. He said he felt good but would wait until I got home and he ate before taking his medicine. We had planned a celebration because we got confirmation that he didn’t have ling cancer and it was just pneumonia, but he had been making awesome strides and could go back to work the following Tuesday. So I got home from work around 6 pm, quickly cooked dinner, and fed my husband. I also made sure that he took his antibiotic 400 mg moxifloxicin aka Avelox around 730 pm. That evening we talked about where we wanted to go for our next 25 years together, and what we wanted to do, and finalizing plans for our 15th anniversary. Ya see it took us being together for 10 years before we decided to finally get married. Our children were grown and we have grandchildren so we were making plans to live out our lives towards our golden years. Long about 10 pm we decided to go to bed, my husband complaining about a headache at the base of his skull, very troubling considering he never had headaches. I checked his vitals and everything was perfectly normal, so I gave him 2 tylenol and said we would call the dr in the morning, if he still had the headache. 11 pm we were both up again with him complaining his stomach was bothering him and he felt like he had a rope around his chest. I asked him if he wanted me to call an ambulance, or to go to the hospital, he said no, he just wasn’t taking that medicine the next day because it was nasty, he could taste it, the headache was worse but he was going to try and lay back down. I was wide awake and sitting up to keep an eye on him. He got up at 11:30 to go to the bathroom, I heard the toilet flush and saw the light go out in the hall. I knew he was going back to bed, I went back to the TV and my computer, it was time to blog post again about my daily blessings from God. 5 minutes later I heard a wail come out of the bedroom, and I went at a full run. The last thing that my husband had said to me after he told me he loved me was “Help me!” I couldn’t tell at the time what he said its only been as I have replayed it over and over in my mind that that is what he said. I ran into the bedroom to see my husband laid across the bed in a full blown seizure. He had never had a seizure before, and here he was in a grand mal seizure, stiff as a board, laying across the bed where he fell, his legs hanging off the bed. I called 911, and calmly told the dispatcher who I was, our address and where the Ambulance was in regards to my house and HOW to get to my house. I told the dispatcher that he was seizing and in respiratory distress and appeared to be posturing, which is usually a sign of imminent death. I pleaded with her to make them hurry, they were only 3 minutes away. She said she would do her best and then promptly hung up on me. That was 11:35, at 11:37 my world fell apart as I watch the love of my life take his last breath, and a single tear slide down his face, and I was pleading and begging him not to leave me, I began to perform CPR on him. I gave up at 11:47, I was exhausted and he was cold, I knew that he had left me and that I had to honor his wishes, he never wanted CPR. I called me oldest daughter, and she arrived at 11:57. at the same time the first responders showed up. The rest is rather fragmented in my mind because my love was gone from me, so nothing much really mattered anymore. A couple of days later I called his dr, the one who prescribed the medicine and explained to him what had happened, and he acknowledged at that time that Keith’s death was directly caused by the antibiotic and he filed an adverse reaction event with the FDA, he was also kind enough to email me a copy of it as well. I discovered as well that the average rate off death for men 60 and over was 68%, so you have a better chance of winning the lottery than surviving Avelox if you are over 60. My husband became part of that statistic that day, and I became a widow far too many years ahead of when I should have.