Friday, November 6, 2009

my life with the virus - the pig-flu

There is absolutely no real information on H1N1 out there. Sure there are pamphlets about how "its a different kind of flu season" out there. But all these pamphlets and government written info sheets provides are tidbit on vaccinations and hand washing. There's no substantial information for those who have it.
And no, I don't have an official swab-test diagnosis. That's because there are next to no places in this city doing the swabs or tests (unless you go directly to the hospital from your family clinic that way the test justifies admissions. I was at my family doctor's office on Monday (although didn't get to see her, even though she was there) where I first got Tamiflu. I'm on my last day of Tamiflu and now have a wicked ear infection. A friend took me back to the clinic today (the wife is passed out, sick too, and my mom wasn't home) where I got antibiotics and even requested a swab - so that I have more information in which to make my decision about the vaccine once I get better. The nurse's attitude was "what decision; you get it". Hm, I thought we lived in a democracy where I had the choice! Seems like even if I wanted the information to make that informed decision, I won't get it. The way I see it, I don't need the vaccine if what I have is officially H1N1. She said it is, of course, she can't say it because she doesn't have the culture. And I won't get the culture because the system is broke, busy and backlogged.

OK I get that.
It's so backlogged and tired that I got 2 Rx's for antibiotics today. I was to fill only one but she gave me 2 because one drug is significantly lower in cost than the other. So the doctor that gave them to me is not a regular to the clinic, nor did she have access to my file (she saw me in the supplies room, that's how bogged down the system is). That's dangerous.

So dangerous that had this woman looked at my chart she would have known right away not to give me one of the scripts that is contra indicative to my designer drug. Lethally contra indicative.

Either way, I'm getting really tried of any good information out there. I'm tired of all the paranoia that clogs up phone lines for 6 to 7 hours just to ask a nurse a question - when one already has it, not some paranoid fear-based questions. Which, OK, are valid but there are people trying to live through this vicious thing! So my pharmacist from the Designer Drug program called (mainly because of money issues) and when I told him what as up he got all serious and gave me some real information. Finally. I now know what too look for (and pray doesn't happen) and how long I'll still be in danger for, for real. Apparently even though the fever is gone, doesn't mean I'm out of the woods. In fact, even when my last cough is gone (or ear infection etc.) I will still be in danger - up till almost 2 weeks after I think I'm out of the woods.

I have to admit, as much as I think I'm a tough little cookie, that kinda scares me a little. I've only heard people like me (with underlying conditions) die from this virus. I sit here with all my Western & Alternative meds pumping through my body on full force for nearly a week now and know from this past week just how vicious this virus is. I've never ever felt so at mercy of an outside illness.