First. To those who don't 'get' the 'zebra' thing:
Here's the story/joke.
So, you're on your back in Central Park NYC looking at the night sky (of course, -- my insert here -- if you're in NYC you won't be able to see any stars. Maybe the moon. IF its full.) Anyway. . you're in Central Park, on your back, gazing at the full moon when you hear the sound of galloping hoof beats. This is Central Park, so you "know" its a horse galloping past (hopefully under the control of someone who knows where the horses are and are not allowed so he's not going to be galloping onto you .)
But . . . it just might be a zebra. And the difference between a good doctor and a bad doctor is partly in their willingness to recognize that 1 time in a million it might be a zebra, not a horse. (After all, the Central Park Zoo is near by and on some nights some staff members may have been partying pre work.)
I'm a zebra. As one doctor (in whose presence I have gone into anaphalaxis and, on another occasion, had a seizure,) said "Gina. I do perfectly normal, reasonable interventions with your body. And you react in perfectly abnormal, unreasonable ways!"
(I no longer see this doc as his intonation made it clear he thought these abnormal reactions were intentional.) (And if so, how the h*** do I do that? Think of the fortune I could make if I could figure out how I consciously do this and patent it? All those students looking to postpone their exams? All those accused wishing to postpone their arraignments? )
But last night, which was the "prep" night for this morning's colonoscopy, I developed hives and throat and mouth swelling and itching. This began at 3:45 EST, which is a horrid time to try to phone a doc in the US as the offices staff has stopped picking up the phone so they can leave on time, but the answering service has not yet started fielding the calls.
But eventually, with me and my husband working 2 phones, I eventually got advice indirectly from my GP's office to get me to the ER associated with the hospital where I was to have the colonoscopy.
Which was packed. Mostly, as I judgementally observed, (in this land where we are repeated told has "the best health care system in the world") with patients who really did not have emergencies but were there just to see a doctor for free.
But the triage staff examined me and judged I was borderline anaphalactic and fast tracked me to the ER doc. (we were out in 1:30. Some kind of record!)
. . . with instructions by the doc to discontinue the prep, take benadryl round the clock and to not report to the colonoscopy as "your immune system is well triggered. Like it has drawn its sword and is now looking for a fight. With your multiple drug allergies this makes it more likely that you will react with something your body will encounter and if you're under, you would be in grave danger of having that throat swelling get worse and block your airway."
So, on the way home, after I gulped some benadryl, (my dose was cheap. The hospital's pill would have cost our insurance something like $100. Again -- best health care in the world???) I had a nice burger and baked potato to satisfy the tummy which had been growling all day due to the intake of clear liquids only. (I kept trying to explain to my stomach that we were ingesting all the calories needed for survival, but my stomach was stubbornly ignoring me and demanding solid food.)
So -- back home. Happy tummy. BP back to functional limits so I can stand up and walk. Rash dissipating. Throat and mouth no longer swelling and itchy.
And a message on my answering machine from the gastro's office saying it is "impossible to get hives from the Miralax and that I should continue the prep and report for my procedure on time. (which was, as I type this, 2 hours ago.)
Of course, the fine print on the Miralax bottle says that hives and itching are rare, but can happen with Miralax. And if one does develop hives and itching to stop the prep, and report to the ER.
So . . . I fully expect to have to "blame" the ER doc (as he anticipated.)
Ain't life grand when you're a zebra? (Thanks for reading my rant. I thought you would be a sympathetic audience.)