Doctors & Nurses Say Severe Burn Victim Faces Long Recovery - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/20/05

Doctors & Nurses Say Severe Burn Victim Faces Long Recovery

Doctors and nurses at University Medical Center's Burn Unit are performing what they hope is the last skin graft surgery for Cody Jackson. You may remember just more than three weeks ago, the 27 year-old suffered first and second degree burns over 80% of his body after a "hot oil truck" caught fire, then exploded. The incident happened in Levelland.

Cody remains in serious condition at UMC. Though he still faces a very long road to recovery, both the staff and Cody's family say his improvement has been outstanding. It's an achievement they say could have only been possible with the care and treatment he's received at the burn unit.

3/2/05
One Man is in Critical Condition After Levelland Hot Oil Truck Explosion
A 27-year old man is in critical condition at University Medical Center after a hot oil truck exploded in Southwest Levelland.

"I just feel that he's done wonders, he's talking to us now, he knows what he's saying now," explains Cody's mother, Martha.

It's a far cry from the 5% chance doctors initially said Cody had to survive.

Martha spends almost every day by her son's side. "It's been rough but most of them have been good," she explains.

Martha says it's the staff at UMC's burn unit that make those days bearable. "They're taking such good care of Cody, plus when we come in there, they are so gracious to us," says Martha.

"We're all family," explains Cynthia Hester, who has spent 20 years working in the burn unit. One of Cody's many nurses, she says he has years of recovery ahead but his progress is encouraging.

"He has far exceeded any expectation I ever had," explains Hester.

"Our goal and the family's goal is one in the same, we want to get the patient well and close to living as close to the life before their injury," says Greg Bruce, UMC's division director.

He explains involving the family is key to helping patients recover at the burn unit. "We want to keep patients close to their family in this very traumatic process," adds Bruce.

Bruce says more than 90% of burn patients recover after being treated at the unit, a comfort to Martha who says she's looking forward to the day Cody can be reunited with his two children. "He wants to see his boys, he says he wants to see his babies," explains Martha.

She says it could be months before Cody is released from the burn unit. The University Medical Center Burn Unit treats more than 300 patients a year.

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