Friday, July 4, 2008

The Hospital

Yesterday, I had quite the adventure. I woke up not feeling well, which has been happening semi-regularly since I´ve arrived here. Usually, I begin to feel better after breakfast, but yesterday, instead of feeling better, I began to feel a lot worse. By 11:30, my stomach cramps were so horrible that I could barely stand up and I finally gave in and called the coordinators at my school to ask them to bring me to see the doctor.

Through the help of a translator from Maximo, I had a consultation with a doctor and was able to describe what had been going on. The doctor then performed an exam and sent us to the pharmacy to get some medications to help me stop feeling sick and to relieve the pain. So we walked to the pharmacy and picked up the medications which had to be administered through a shot.

It was perhaps the most terrifying shot of my life. For one thing, it was huge. The medicine filled a tube about the size of a roll of quarters, if not larger, and I didn´t like the idea that they would be shooting that into me. For another thing, the nurse was unable to identify a vein in my arm and decided to give me the shot in my hand instead. Her first attempt was excruciating and the area on my hand immediately began swelling up and turning black and blue. Her second try on my other hand went much better.

The shot helped a lot and the pain began to subside. We then had to go down to the basement of the hospital to talk to someone in the lab and to get my blood drawn. We were told to return in a few hours.

When we went back, we picked up my results from the lab and brought them up to the doctor´s office. The doctor informed me that I have parasites and salmonella. I´m now on medications for both things, one medication for three days and the other for seven, and have to drink a disgusting salty, fruit drink in order to become rehydrated. I have to return on Monday to see how I´m doing. I´ve also been placed on a strict diet while I´m on the medicatiosn (no fresh fruits or vegetables, no fried foods, no dairy... generally I can only eat bread and soup).

But I´m feeling a lot better today then I was yesterday. I was ordered not to attend Spanish classes or go to my project so I spent most of my morning watching Friends on DVD and doing Sudoku puzzles. Hopefully, I´ll be able to get some sleep this afternoon.

In other news, Happy Fourth of July.

More later...


Anonymous said...

Hi Bethie!
Please take care of yourself! We'll keep you in our prayers.
love, aunt Jane

Caitlin said...

Get better soooooon!
I can't believe they gave you a shot in your hand. ouch ouch ouch ouch.
I love you! My love will heal you!

Becky said...


How terrifying! If I had been your nurse, I promise I wouldn't have made your hand black and blue. She must've missed your vein.

Get better soon!!