2 May

I’ve spent the week feeling moderately horrid, since I’ve caught/recaught the plague from my husband, who has himself been arguing with it since February or so. My usual action would be to stay home the first day, but since I’m still training in my new, hourly job where calling in sick means you might as well just not come back, I’ve had to drag my ass into a small room with no air circulation and cough all over every one.

The burning pain of my throat-you’d think it was strep, you really would.

Today, convinced by said husband to go to the clinic (I always harass him but rarely take my own advice), I get asked if I’ve been to Mexico on the phone making the appointment. I can’t help but giggle as I tell her no.

“Gotta ask!” she chimes merrily

When I get there all the chairs are empty, and the office quiet. We’re shown right into the office, Vivian dragging some toy behind her. I barely have time to wash my hands when the doctor comes in.

And immediately starts lecturing me on how I should know exactly what my allergy to Penicillin is.

I tell him I really don’t know, and frankly, I’m not too eager to figure it out.

“Ask your mother,” he says, distracted, “She should know.”

I’d love to I tell him, except for her being DEAD.

He doesn’t skip a beat. Tells me to ask my father. I glare at him, wondering if he’s actually serious.

Call where your original doctor’s notes would be. Because it’s really hard to treat someone who is allergic to penicillin.

Which it really isn’t, since no other doctor in the last 20 some years has EVER stated that this is an issue, regardless of the infection. They might say we have less options, but they’ve never made it sound like it’s my fault that I believe I’m allergic to something that could fucking kill me, and that I’m unwilling to confirm this by taking the drug.

I rarely get antibiotics because I don’t want to build up any type of immunity to drugs that I can avoid, and because I don’t like to. I usually go to the doctor only to confirm, and check that nothing very serious is going on. I’m a good patient. Yet in 5 minutes, this man managed to make me feel like I was being irresponsible for not getting my mother to write how I was allergic to penicillin as she was dying.

When the lecture was complete, he donned a mask and took a sample from my throat. Just in case.

8 Responses to “Doctored”

  1. Jennifer May 2, 2009 at 7:20 pm #


    I take it that it was a clinic, being allergic to pennicilin is NOT a big deal, Glen is allergic to amoxycillin. For heavens sake, Pennicilin is one of the oldest ones out there, there are TONS of alternatives.

    I have an allergy to Morphine, I get a bee sting reaction. Not a big deal, but enough to make doctors avoid giving it to me.

    My recent encounter with the OB was to be informed that I no longer have PCOS (based on incomplete lab tests), that hormones have nothing to do with loosing weight (tell that to Thyroid patients) and that no OBs in NS do paps anymore, and to kindly go to a walk in for my yearly annual.

    Yeah, I’ll get right on that.

  2. sdianne May 2, 2009 at 9:09 pm #

    Sorry to hear that… I’ve had strep a few times over the years and refused to take antibiotics (except for that one time in university, but they didn’t work anyhow). Here’s what worked for me when I had strep about a year ago: I took as many PRObiotics as possible (kombucha is good bc it doesn’t contain dairy), avoided other dairy products at all cost, drank/ate garlic, ginger, cayenne pepper, and rested (which means no tv, staying off the computer as much as possible, etc)…

    Hope you get better soon. F— the doctor.


  3. Cynthia Page May 2, 2009 at 10:15 pm #

    WTF. Dying to know the Dr’s name.Initials aren’t J.T. are they?

  4. thordora May 2, 2009 at 11:30 pm #

    I really didn’t get his name. Asshat might work.

  5. Bec May 3, 2009 at 9:02 am #

    I had penicillin as a baby and fortunately my mum was around long enough to let me know what to tell the doctor.

    Next time, just tell them you “Turned red, swelled up and stopped breathing”. I’ve had a couple of skeptics and it shuts them up immediately.

    (You’re right, there’s no reason for the third degree!)

  6. Ms. Changes Pants While Driving May 3, 2009 at 7:10 pm #

    i hate questions like that. i always brace myself. does your mom have a history of breast cancer? i don’t know. well, ask her. yeah…it’s that easy, friend.

  7. Superla May 6, 2009 at 11:49 am #

    What a jackass.

    I’m allergic to pen, too, and I’ve also had a doctor tell me that I’m probably not *really* allergic to it. He may be right, but considering that a penicillin allergy put my grandfather in a semi-coma for a week, I’m not fecking playing around with it. Grr.

  8. angharad May 13, 2009 at 5:51 pm #

    i’m allergic to penicillin too. i have to have anti-biotics for when my teeth are done as i have a heart murmur and also when i get crappy throats – all too often. i get erythromicin which works just fine. tell your hopeless doctor that is what we have in the uk – we know our colds and throats over here what with the weather!

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