jueves, 5 de agosto de 2010

Tired of being Sick and Sick of being Tired

The last month or so haven't exactly been the best for me healthwise. It started at the end of June when I got diarrhea again, only this time I had a parasite in my digestive system (last time it was an amoeba). It was awful, I'm not going to go into details or anything, but lets just say I had it shooting out of both ends. This happened on a weekend when I had plans to go see friends, instead I had to remain within a five block radius of my house so I could run back and use the toilet. I got better once I took some antiparastic medication, which apparently isn't approved by the FDA, but hey, it got the job done. Afterwards I was fine, but weary of what I ate and drank since I still don't know where I caught a parasite from. It's funny though because the next week after recovering I actually got hit with constapation, which while not as bad as diarrhea, its not very fun either.
The next week I came down with a cold. The first few days I had a wicked cough and a scratchy throat. Once that was gone I was left for a week and a half shooting out bright yellow green snot and phelgm out of my nose and throat. It was pretty disgusting. Also a good thing that I spent a lot of my class time working outside, because I was spitting out a lot of it. Trust me when say you would not want to see my handkerchief.
Upon recovering I felt the amount of energy they had to be very low, and suspectful that I was losing weight. By now most of my pants fit real big on me, and though I've punched in a new hole in my belt before, a new one needs to be made. So I decided to call the PC medical office to try and set up an appointment. Unfortuanetly, my phone decided it didn't want to function for me that afternoon, I mean it's not like I had any important calls to make! Later that night, however, my situation got a little bit more dire. I had a fever of about 100F and some other symptoms I'm not entirely comfortable sharing. By morning I had also seemed to have come down with, yes that's right, diarrhea. I made my way down to Managua to see the doctor where I was sent to the hospital in order to get some blood work and stool samples taken. Turns out I had yet another bacterial infection and was put on antibiotics for the week.

Now skip forward to the following weekend, three days after I had finished my antibiotics. Don't worry, no diarrhea, but I did get another fever. Except this one was different. It started Friday night that I was feeling tired. By Saturday afternoon I had a full blown fever that never dropped below 100F, and going up to 103 degrees for a while. I had a few other accompanying symptoms though that spelled out trouble for me. Aches throughout my legs and thighs, swollen lymph nodes, headaches, and once my fever broke on Monday, a itchy rash on my chest, upper arms, and upper back.
So what could all of this be? Dengue fever, a tropical fever transmitted by mosquitos that are most active during the day (making my mosquito net useless against them). And in addittion to all of these symptoms I also have no energy and feel constantly tired, and due to how much blood work I've had to get done I feel a little like a pincushion. So far I've gotten blood taken three times in four days. The first time I went to the lab to get my blood taken was especially awful and the woman kept poking me trying to find my vein, first with her finger then with a needle. Eventually she decided that rather than take it from my arm near the elbow she would draw the blood from my hand where my veins were visible. It was horrible. It hurts, and after making the mistake of looking I saw that instead of being pumped into a closed test tube, I saw that my blood squirting out of a needle and dripping into an open tube, the gremlin looking nurse with heavy eye makeup asking me the whole time "sos nervioso?". Add to this the fact that it was late and that I had barely eaten that day and you can well imagine just how light headed I got. In responce to this, my wonderful nurse decided to use an alcohol swab as smelling salts and kept shoving it in my face to the point where I felt I couldn't even breathe out (since usually only one of my nostrils will work at a time).
Anyways, its been four days since I've been here in Managua waiting for my white blood cell count to go back up so that I can be dismissed and go back to my site.