It was during a winter morning the last December when Andrew Lee was saved because of his 14-year-old dog named Sophie. Sophie is a Springer Spaniel. Andrew Lee was used to Sophie waking him up anytime at the night because of her need to be let out in the backyard of their Montreal home.
Andrew Lee is 55. He woke up that night and walked towards the kitchen for the back door. He was a little confused when he saw that Sophie despite waking him up wasn’t following him. To see what the matter was. Andrew turned on the lights as Sophie’s eyesight is not perfect because of her old age.
‘I looked at Sophie, and on the floor, I saw a pool of blood. I was shocked and surprised but within a few seconds, I realized the blood was coming from my foot. I’m saw there was a lot of blood. I tracked and found the blood throughout the kitchen to the hallway to my bedroom. I realized that my situation was serious,’ said Lee.
As a measure of emergency, Lee bandaged his foot and called an ambulance. The ambulance came up within a few minutes after 2 a.m. It was Christmas Eve Day.
What is the disease that Andrew was suffering from?
The ambulance took Lee to the closest hospital to their location. They drove for like 30 minutes and reached a hospital in Verdun. All through the way, Lee’s foot was bleeding and he had no idea what was happening to him.
The hospital took Lee into emergency and soon Lee was informed that he was being diagnosed with flesh-eating disease, which is invading his foot and spreading the bacteria.
The bacterial infection was called Necrotizing Fasciitis. It is a rare but life-threatening infection. It spreads too quickly in the whole body. According to one report by the British Columbia Government, around one in four people who catch this disease die from it.
A wonderful surgeon came to the rescue and promised Lee to do her best. But she was honest about what the disease can lead to.
She was clear enough to tell Lee ‘ Mr. Lee, I will do the best in my capacity to save you but in the process, you might lose half of your leg.’
Lee had to go through two surgeries. His toes along with his foot were removed from his body on the festive day of Christmas. This operation saved Lee from the life-threatening bacteria.
In the words of Lee
In the words of Lee, ‘ I have heard the stories of others who had to go through far worse situations than me while dealing with this bacteria, so I consider myself fortunate.’
Looking in the hindsight, Lee says, It was all because my dog woke me up at that time, It matters a lot as the timing was crucial in dealing with this bacteria.
Lee considers Sophie a hero. He says that Sophie paid me back all the love and kindness that I offered him when I adopted him a decade back.
For a few months after his surgeries, Lee had to recover in hospital under the dedicated time of medical professionals. Lee had rehabilitation therapy at LaSalle Hospital. He focussed on his balance and walking.
Lee says You take a lot of things for granted. I never thought I will need to learn these things again in my life.
Once recovering completely, Lee is looking forward to making up for the time he has lost in dealing with the disease. Lee wants to dine out and become as mobile as he can. He is excited to spend time with the people he loves and his lifesaver Sophie.
For Sophie, Lee has plans to treat her with ice cream. Lee considers himself lucky that he got Sophie. He encourages people to look for dog rescue organizations when it comes to adopting dogs.
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