Warning — you’re probably gonna hear far too much information in this post, but I need to vent a bit.
Ever since being discharged from the hospital, I’ve had some pretty bad digestive problems. It started with just your run of the mill diarrhea, but has slowly gotten worse over the last month. Lately I’ve been waking up a bit crampy, and have to hit the bathroom fairly often during the day right now.
I spent the other evening searching on the internet, and finally pinned it down to antibiotic associated diarrhea, due mainly to the IV and oral antibiotics I had while fighting pneumonia:
Antibiotic-associated diarrhea occurs when antibiotics disturb the natural balance of “good” and “bad” bacteria in your intestinal tract, causing harmful bacteria to proliferate far beyond their normal numbers. The result is often frequent, watery bowel movements.
Most often, antibiotic-associated diarrhea is fairly mild and clears up shortly after you stop taking the antibiotic. But sometimes you may develop colitis, an inflammation of your colon, or a more serious form of colitis called pseudomembranous colitis. Both can cause abdominal pain, fever and bloody diarrhea. In cases of pseudomembranous colitis, these symptoms may become life-threatening.
My mom has been urging me to hit the clinic for a few days now, and I finally decided to take her advice and hit the clinic this morning. I called the various clinics downtown and asked the wait time, ultimately settling on one in the West End that only had a 15 minute wait.
An hour and a half later I was still stuck in their waiting room, wondering who the hell taught the girl at the front desk how to measure time. The doctor was pretty sure it was exactly what I thought, and filled out all the requisite forms for me to head down and get some tests done. He also recommended I hit a health food store and get some probiotics, which are basically concentrated forms of the good bacteria that should help replenish my system.
Because I’m leaving in a few days for Ontario, I really need to figure this out and get on medication, if that’s the route I’m going to. I really can’t afford to be sick anymore, and definitely don’t want to miss out on any of the Toronto festivities that are coming up.
So at this point, I’ve blown about two hours of my morning. I walk into the lab, which is thankfully empty, and they give me a couple of containers and tell me to unleash hell in them. I say “great, where do I go?” She says “oh no, you have to go home, fill them up, and them come all the way back here again.”
Driving downtown sucks, and with the rain, I really don’t feel like walking everywhere today. So that basically means I have to kill another chunk of time coming home, doing the container deeds, and then going all the way down to the clinic to drop them off again. To make matters worse, as I’m walking out the door the nurse tells me I only have two hours before the stuff in the vials becomes ineffective, so there’s a small window of time. Great.
So now that I’m back at home, wouldn’t you guess it — I don’t have to go. So I’m watching the clock, hoping I’ll make the deadline. I’ve pounded back some dairy and other bad foods that should hopefully force something to happen, but we’ll see. I rarely get sick, so this whole episode is a real pain in the ass.