Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Fun with Medicine

Ok, so I quit drinking the Raspberry Leaf tea at noonish yesterday, and the symptoms I described before had returned by this morning. So I had a cup of tea for breakfast, and they're gone again. I think we're on to something. I'll quit the tea again today at noon and keep you posted. I'm anxious to hear back from those of you who are trying it for other reasons (generally heavy periods, etc.). I'll post your results, anonymously, here too.

In other news, Claire doesn't have the Mexican flu. After several days of symptoms like a fever (up to 103), runny nose, wet cough, saying "ears hurt" and "tummy hurt," and talking like Kathleen Turner, I put the kids in the car to take MG to preschool and every last channel on the radio was freaking over the Mexican flu, and how a kid (23 months) in Texas died of it yesterday.

I called the doctor's office in tears. (Hey, I'm a little hormonal right now...) "I know she doesn't have the Mexican flu," I said, "but she's sick and I want to hear it from the doctor that she's fine, even though we had Mexican food last week..." It was kind of embarrassing. But while she doesn't have the Mexican flu, she does have another ear infection. The doctor and I decided to wait and monitor the situation through Friday, and to see if she can fight it off on her own before we give her more antibiotics. After all the shenanigans in March, I'm just not going to go down the antibiotics/side effects/back to the doctor/pick up another bug/more antibiotics/more side effects/etc. road again, at least not willingly.

My dad, who is a nurse and generally well read and knows stuff, when asked if I need to freak out about the Mexican flu, said, "Yes and no."

He says that "Yes, an awful lot of people are going to get the flu, but no, not a lot of people are going to die of it."

I am doing my best not to freak. After all, if it were the end of the world, we would've been informed by REM. Besides, it starts with an earthquake, right? Oh shit.

(too obscure?)

I gotta go get MG from school.

(It's Leonard Bernstein.)


Anonymous said...

Aw -- you didn't post an audio clip of Claire's talking like Kathleen Turner?! What a shame.

So glad to hear you're onto a remedy for yourself. I think excessive bleeding is a fairly common thing (although I've never experienced it myself) -- particularly in conjunction with perimenopause. So you might find more info by Googling menorrhagia (and you thought diarrhea was hard to spell) and forget about its connection (in your case) to IUD removal.

If Claire has to go on antibiotics again, PLEASE start her on antifungals at the same time -- either a prescription antifungal medication or yogurt with lots of live cultures or whatever you did to help her before. This could be a lifelong thing for her -- whenever she goes on antibiotics, she'll need to take steps to head off subsequent yeast overgrowth, too.

Anonymous said...

It's the Swine Flu...not the Mexican Flu.

Amy said...

Anon 1 - will DEFINITELY use probiotics. She was a mess from the previous courses of antibiotics.

Will they give Diflucan to a baby?

Anon 2 - I thought they were calling it Mexican flu to differentiate it from other flues - it was my understanding that it was a swine/avian/human flu hybrid, and thus calling it Swine flu was inaccurate??? Who knows? Maybe it depends on your news source.

The media is sure having fun with it all, no matter what you call it.


Anonymous said...

Not obscure at all. Made me smile :)

You vitriolic, patriotic, slam, fight, bright light, feeling pretty psyched!!!

Hope you girls all get feeling better soon!


Anonymous said...

I rather like the term Mexican Flu, which I hadn't encountered until you used it. After all, we're supposed to be avoiding travel to Mexico, not avoiding eating pork. And if they wanted a pig-related name, why didn't they choose Porcine Flu instead of Swine Flu? Porcine seems to fit better with the accepted term of Avian Flu.

Good point re Diflucan. Some docs are reluctant to prescribe it at all because they're leery of liver damage. And I doubt it's made in a low dose.

1) Call your pediatrician's office and try to get free info over the phone. If Claire were to get an Rx for an antibiotic, what does the doc usually recommend for concurrent treatment of the side effects of killing off the good bacteria, too? If you get a satisfactory answer, you're done.

2) If you want to pursue Diflucan, find a pharmacist who compounds prescription medicines. (Check the phone book, ask your regular pharmacist, ask your dad to check at the hospital, check with your state college's pharmacy school.) Talk to that pharmacist to ask if he can compound a lower-dose strength of Diflucan suitable for a toddler. Ask him if anybody else does that with Diflucan. Ask him if he can determine what dose Claire should take. Ask him what else he can recommend if Diflucan isn't feasible.

3) Ask your regular pharmacist what he'd recommend in lieu of Diflucan for a toddler.

4) Ask around at a high-quality health food store -- not one of those that stocks the shelves with carob candy and other snacks and calls itself a health food store. Find one that specializes in herbal products, vitamins, minerals, other food supplements, etc. that's run by a guy who's been in the business for 20 years or more. Maybe there's one in the town of a large state college. Or try 86th & Township Line south of you. Or Evanston.

5) Before God created Diflucan, there was "Nilstat powder" which contains Nystatin. It's a prescription anti-fungal that's not nearly as strong as Diflucan, but it's super cheap, and very versatile. I think a toddler would tolerate it very well. It's a yellow powder that comes in bulk in a glass jar. It must be refrigerated. If your pharmacist picks it up off the shelf and hands it to you, refuse to take it because it wasn't kept refrigerated. Adults stuff the powder into gelatin capsules. Empty gelatin capsules are available in many sizes from good health food stores -- Eli Lilly makes the capsules. Talk to somebody (your pediatrician, pharmacist, etc.) about a dose for Claire since she's small. Maybe you could get the smallest size of gelatin capsule and fill only one of the two ends of the capsule, and only half full. She'd take multiple doses in a day. I assume she won't swallow a capsule. Dump out the contents into a spoonful of applesauce, pudding, whatever. I wouldn't mix it with a liquid because a lot of the powder will stick to the sides of the glass. Or talk to a pharmacist for suggestions how to measure out a tiny dose. It's versatile -- you could also measure out a dose and then mix the powder with her diaper rash ointment, probably sprinkling the dose directly onto Claire instead of mixing it into a large batch of the ointment so you can keep track of how much she's getting. Women can also fill a gelatin capsule and insert upwards (!) as a suppository (into either orifice, whichever one you need to treat). The stuff works better than the OTC preparations for vaginal yeast infections, and it's much cheaper and less messy, too.

Anon 1

Amy said...

Anon 1 - I totally know who you are, now. :)

What do you think of just giving her Acidophilus milk, instead of messing with pills and powders.

I know of a compounding pharmacy and a good health food store. Conveniently, they're right next to each other, and very near here.

If I hadn't fixed it myself, I was going to call your mom about the bleeding.

Have you had that baby yet? :)