Please join Bruce and Mary as they share another insight into the Mexico medical system. For those of you who prefer to view these posts from the original blog-site, please click here.
It’s a little embarrassing to have discovered this after 3 1/2 yrs down here, and also, surprising considering how cheap I am, but most of the major farmacia chains have docs on call. We’d seen signs posted regarding this but never checked it out until a short time ago, when Mary was struggling with a resistant UTI. She got her first prescription from my cardi0logist. It was one of those things, done down here quite a bit, where just as we were wrapping up my appointment I said, “Say Doc, would you mind writing a receta for Mary for, well, what we’re pretty sure is a UTI?” No problem he said and wrote one for a generic antibiotic, for no extra charge. That knocked the infection down for awhile but it came roaring back and Mary made the wise move of having a culture done at our lab, Clinicas de Merida. She got the result about 4 days later and the results actually tell you the antibiotics to use and not use for this particular infection. So we stopped at a YZA farmacia hoping to get one of these recommended drugs over the counter, but que lastima, Mexico is doing a pretty good(?) job of bringing all the antibiotics under doc control. When we first came down here we could easily be sure to always have some Amoxicillin on hand for the occasional ear infection and such, being able to buy it over the counter. Not anymore. So we had to see a doc to get a prescription but this was a Friday, late in the afternoon, and we wanted to get started on this right now. The clerk at the counter told us that they had a doc on duty at their main Itzimna farmacia. And after much interrogation we finally believed that this is a real doctor, or doctora in this case and the service is free. So feeling like a good walk we hoof the mile or so to this farmacia and right next door is a tiny waiting room and office and Mary walks right in.
This is Dra. Sissy Scarlett Paz y Trejo. She gave a couple prescriptions to Mary for her UTI and was very knowledgeable on the subject, a very competent doctora. She said we could fill it right next door at YZA, her farmacia, but we didn’t have to. And the fee truly was… nada. We went next door and got Mary on the road to a fairly quick recovery.
Ok, flash forward to just this last Thursday. As I was working my shift at my online moderation job I noticed a couple of welts on the back of my upper legs. I had Mary take a look and they looked like spider bites but there were an awful lot of them and I don’t think they usually travel in teams. Mary did a little googling and we became fairly certain that I had Hives, technically, Urticaria. Well in the middle of that night they increased and starting getting muy pica, very itchy. While working my shift on Friday the welts started multiplying and merging forming small nations and getting very uncomfortable. I’d been taking over-the-counter antihistamines since the middle of last night but these Hives were telling me that they eat those guys for breakfast, and I think they even got a little mad because they were really starting to torture me now. After work we headed downtown. Our usual routine lately, on a TGIF evening, is a nice meal and cervezas at Plaza Serenata at our balcony table overlooking the park. We knew that the big Ahorro Farmacia which had just opened up at the diametrical corner of Plaza Grande, had a doc on call. We went there first, to find that the doctora would be back in at 6, a little over an hour from then. So I put my Hives out of my mind as best I could and we had a nice leisurely meal and beers at Plaza Serenata.
We had to wait only a few minutes for our turn and the good doctora Rosalba Dolores Castelan was right on task. I quickly showed her a PG site of my Hives/Urticaria and she quickly agreed with our diagnosis. Then she grilled me on any strange food, meds, or any allergies that I might have, all in Spanish. I was pretty happy that Mary didn’t have to help a lot. Then we agreed on the much more aggressive approach of two injecciones instead of a regimen of capsules o tabletas. So she sent us next door for a couple 8 mgs ampules of Dexamefasone/Dexamethasone and some killer anti-itch cream.
Mary with the very helpful Danielle (see what happens when I take the pic?!). We picked up some additional supplies and we always make sure to present our Ahorro tarjeta, card, as bonuses really build up pretty fast.
We returned to the good doctora and she quickly injected that monster hypodermic in my butt, didn’t think we needed to take a picture of that. The Doc tells Mary it is okay to do the honors this time tomorrow. Mary told her that I better be nice, which busted up the doc pretty good. I asked why absolutely no alcohol, is it because it will make me sleepy? No she says, “Problemas respiratorios!” Oh, ok, that sounds pretty serious. Shoot! Well as soon as I get home I do a bunch of googling and, yes long term use combined with alcohol consumption can cause some serious liver damage. But I am only on this stuff for two days, and I couldn’t find anything about respiratory problems (I think she was just trying to scare me, you know how they always say no alcohol with any meds, it seems), so I grabbed a wine and we fired up Nikita on the old computer and followed that with a couple of Breaking Bads and it’s a wrap. After the shot and the cream I had no itching at all.
Saturday morning my welts are greatly diminished however, one of the properties of this super shot is that it is a highly potent immuno-suppressant, so the lower digestive tract problem I had earlier in the week, which I thought was gone, came back strong raising it’s sights to my estomago. I was pretty miserable and had to go on the don’t eat, diet for the day, with even sips of water causing some distress. So it was an early night and no second shot, figuring fighting this stomach virus with one arm of my immune system tied behind its back was not such a smart idea. Plus the effects of the shot last night had my hives shrinking throughout the day.
Sunday dawns and I feel pretty good, testing my belly with a jug of water and now I am moving onto coffee and with Mary’s close inspection, most of the hives are a distant memory and I feel pretty doggone good. Thanks once again, Mexican Medicine.
Thanks for visiting gentle reader. Bruce invites any and all to tell their Mexican Medical stories. Or American ones for that matter, it would be nice to hear a happy one. Hasta proxima Domingo!