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May 9, 2008

Better Living Through Chemistry

Ah, sweet Benadryl. Thank you for helping me sleep and for taking away my sneezing, runny nose, headache, and watering eyes for a few hours. Where would I be without you? Miserable, for certain.

Yesterday, when I went to the market to pick up the two bottles of medicine (one for daytime, one for night), I decided to check with the pharmacist on my selections. I had already done lots of research on different options for pregnant women and even asked my doctor about it at my last visit, but I though I'd check one more available source. (You know, because I'm crazy.) I was stunned by how NOT clinical this man was. Most of the specialties that we interact with at school are also in training to be some sort of clinical factor, be it physician's assistants or nurses or dental students. This man, however, this PHARMACIST was not at all interested in my symptoms or condition. It was funny how blatant it was.

I walked up to the counter with my two bottles of generic pills and promptly sneezed all over the counter. It was a little embarrassing, but hey, that's why I was there, right? My eyes were watering so much that I couldn't see and were almost swelled closed. My nose was running away from me, but that was the least of my concerns, and so I think there was a little clear stream escaping the sniffling. In short, I was a miserable, disgusting mess. I asked for the pharmacist and, when he approached the counter, I told him that I'd read about these drugs and understood that they were okay for use in pregnancy and that my doctor had approved them, but that I would appreciate his opinion. He looked in his little book of drugs and said, "Well, they look like they'd be ok, but there isn't a lot of data on these drugs in pregnant humans, so you should only use them if you need them."

I paused and (attempted to) look at him with a rather baffled look on my face. Did it not seem that I needed them? Did I look like I just had some minor sniffles that were a slight inconvenience? DO I LOOK CRAZY TO YOU? (ok, don't answer that one.)

The non-Pharmacist who was working looked at him and said, "I think she should take them. She looks awful." The Pharmacist, in his learned wisdom, went for the scare tactic and said, "Well, she should weigh the risk to her baby. It's just allergies, after all."

Another pause. I could feel my temper flaring. It was leave now while I still had some control or get thrown out of the Kroger. I thanked him in the most polite way possible at that moment and ran for it.

It's not that I don't agree with his sentiment. OF COURSE I want to protect the Turnip and it's better that he errs on the side of caution. But when all the available research finds no risk and when my doctor has recommended that I take something for the Miseries and when I have already done all the reading and thinking and worrying that I am capable of performing, I don't need to be guilted into being miserable just so to alleviate HIS concerns. What is bad here is that this experience makes me lean toward avoiding other people's opinions, especially once I've made up my mind.

Am I nuts here? Think I should suffer through the Miseries and let the Turnip remain anti-histamine free? Or do I owe it to the Turnip to try to be as not-miserable as possible, especially while trying to study for boards, which will someday pay for his college tuition?

6 Readers rock!:

Anonymous said...

You should check out saline nasal rinse/irrigation (not the little teapot you pour in your nose, but something that isn't physically impossible). It's an incredibly unpleasant task to squirt water up your nose, but seems to help rinse out the funk. Also, vick's is amazing, but i don't know if it would menthol-ate the turnip. Feel better!
-WV Kate

Anonymous said...

i say down that h2 blocker katie! -rachel g.

Me! said...

That man has obviously NEVER had allergies. "Just allergies," my ass!

Me! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dragonfly said...

I reckon that man should move into the hospital system and work full time making up TPN in those spacesuits (which a pharmacist friend tells me is mindnumbingly horrible, and only appeals to someone with a schizoid personality). Then sick people, and general members of the community (including pregnant ladies with allergies)would be protected.

Anonymous said...

ooops, so benadryl is not exactly an h2 blocker... guess i've got more studying to do!