Wednesday, July 05, 2006

A viral 4th

I'm resurfacing after a 7 day fight with what must be the worst "viral" infection I've ever had. I slight cold turned into a massive sore throat and an nasal-only cold like I've never had before. That turned into a high fever and vomiting, flat on my back for two days experience from which I have been slowly crawling back to normal existence. The kindly doctor on call on Monday (I could post forever on why these things always happen over a holiday weekend!) prescribed me Azithromycin on the off chance it was strep throat although she didn't think I would have the whole body symptoms. At this point I was thinking of strep that had gone systemic - for some reason I've never forgotten that Jim Henson of The Muppets fame, died of systemic strep after ignoring a sore throat. Anyway 3 hours after taking the first double dose of a short course of this antibiotic, I developed a rapid pulse, flushed face and neck and a general uneasiness about taking anymore of it. I called the pharamcist and I could tell he was reading the same info I had in front of me - not very useful. I went on line and found some additional information on the side effects of this antibiotic. Now I'm not a pharamcist nor an MD but as a cancer researcher I hang out with a lot of them and my general interest in medicine has allowed me a reasonable enough background to look on line and make some simple decisions for myself. I am a strong proponent of taking and finishing your meds but in this case, I discontinued them.

I'm grateful for the on call doctor. She spent at least 5 minutes talking to me. In what was most likely a more female-type question, she asked about kids in the house and recent sicknesses. Well, yes two weeks ago both kids had an "out of nowhere" fever for 24-36 hours. Oh and yes, the little 2.5 year old who never throws up, projectile vomited all over me and the bedroom one night for an hour about a week ago, and then went happily off to sleep. I guess what I've learned is that you don't always have "Mommy-immunity", which I seem to have a lot compared to my husband, even though I ususally do most of the sick-child caring.

Thankfully I have a husband who took over last Sunday, Monday and Tuesday morning to allow me to just vegetate and be miserable in bed. I don't know what they ate, wore, did, what time they went to bed, nothing (and I usually know ALL of these things). These kind of wipe-outs for me really hit me emotionally too because I can't be there for my family. It really makes you realize how lucky you are when you have your health. Don't ever take it lightly.

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