Dentists…

I hate going to the dentist. Not because of the pain (not a fan of it, but it’s not awful), but because of the air of moral superiority I encounter every damn time. Through a miracle, I have had fairly good teeth throughout my life. No root canals, a few fillings, two wisdom teeth pulled. So I have been lucky. IBD can manifest orally as well: Mouth ulcers and swelling of the lips, often due to malabsorption of nutrients andRead more

Medication TV Commercials

I remember the very first time I saw a commercial for Remicade on TV in 2004. I was shocked. In Germany (and most other western countries), only over the counter products can get advertised on TV. So, I was familiar with Aspirin commercials, or cough syrup. But Remicade? I didn’t have TV for a long time, so I haven’t paid attention much, but recently, it was discussed in a bunch of forums and it got me watching, and thinking. MyRead more

Vaccinations: just do it.

Please vaccinate. Please. For me. For you. For everybody. The Mighty ran a story on a Bizarro cartoon that shows mythical beings (a mermaid, Leprechaun and a unicorn) sitting in a circle, welcoming their newest group member: the myth that vaccine causes autism. I thought it was pretty funny and spot on. Apparently not to anti vaxxers.  I am bothered to even dignify a study that has been disputed a long time ago , or to talk about whether vaccinesRead more

Remicade Protocol 4859

Monday was Remi day- I had it scheduled around my upcoming South Africa trip (you want to have it in advance but not the day before). I usually take the first appointment in the morning, because I hate waiting. It was 7.30 am sharp as I walked up to the counter, only to be reprimanded by the guy behind it. Apparently check-in time was 20 minutes early. I gave him a sharp and nasty look, and said, “nobody is hereRead more

My 17 in 17 challenge

I have been going back to exercise classes after Thanksgiving. During my childhood and youth and well into my twenties, I hated any form of exercise with passion. One, I was shit at it, and very often just too sick to do anything. Second, German PE teachers are assholes. #notallgermanpeteachers you want to say? No, all of them. One of my favorite writers, Arnold Stadler once wrote that there were two types of PE teachers at his High school. ThoseRead more

Remicade Protocol

It’s been a while since I have written about my health. I had an uneventful colonoscopy, that at first didn’t show much inflammation. Then the biopsy result did end up showing inflammation. As a result, my Remicade dose was increased. Let’s keep our fingers crossed. Today was Remi-Day. I usually ask for the earliest appointment of the day, just to be done with it. I will sing the praises of Remicade any day, but I really, really wish it wasRead more

Hey, FDA

  Hey, FDA: I am tired of being infantilized as a patient. I am really tired. With the increasing number of people being addicted to painkillers and other drugs, you have decided, that it’s best to crack down, to make it harder to obtain these products, and to monitor emergency rooms. You’re overlooking that most opioid people addicted to opioids actually did not get them prescribed, but had them illegally- they stole from a friend etc. As Maia Szalavitz ofRead more

It’s Tuesday, and I am tired…

Even though I am a lapsed, non-practicing Catholic, there are certain ways that this belief system has shaped the way I think. I associate my grandfather with Catholicism, and how his fierce beliefs in justice often brought him pretty close to liberation theology. The whole flipping tables and whipping people thing that Jesus did? Tots okay in my grandpa’s book. If there was an injustice, he called it out, and it was a way to articulate his catholic identity toRead more

The ABC of IBD: “B” is for blood test

In the previous post, I was going on and on about how important blood tests are. I use the term “blood test” as a blanket term, because really, there are plenty of different blood tests, from doing bacteria cultures to testing your blood sugar level. Most of the time, you’ll get something called “Cbc and Auto Diff” (complete blood count and automated differential). It is a rather broad test that can screen for diseases, see if certain conditions like anemiaRead more

The infection saga II: MRSA

I was put on two different antibiotics, and about a day after the last blog post, my abscess started to drain. I’ll spare you the yukky details. On Monday, the cultures had finally gotten back to my doctor- it was MRSA indeed! So the cephalexin that I had been taking had pretty much been useless, and it was discontinued.  Bactrim, the other antibiotic however, was the one that had been helping. Awesome, finish that round, do the hibiscin showers, andRead more