Monday, January 26, 2009


I have a sinus infection. And by that I mean I have the contents of two 1lb bags of jumbo marshmallows stuffed up my nose. Does anyone else leak when they have sinus infections? I seem to be leaking all over my head. I feel drips in the deep recesses of my ears. I can't wear my contacts because whatever is coming out of my eyes is making them all blurry. I have to stuff tissue up my nose at night. This is probably all too much for you. It's actually too much for me but I'm hoping that other people know what I'm talking about and they can give me sound advice as to what to do.* Or at least bring me cookies to make me feel better.

But I'm not really here to write about what's seeping out of my head. This sinus infection reminded me of a DOC STORY! (At Liz's fantastic Beatnik Poetry Birthday Jubilee Hannah, who appreciates a good story, said to me, "I'm happy you got a new job but I'm DEVASTATED that you're not working for the Doc anymore." Me too, Hannah. Me too.)

We had a patient who had a sinus infection and she came in for diathermy. I've mentioned diathermy before, right? I think when I mentioned that the Doc recommended raw bacon for my chest cold. It's a heat therapy. You put these two paddles over whichever spot needs treatment and it's suppose to burn the bacterial right out of your body. Up until that point I had only ever done diathermy on wonky spleens or livers or lungs. I didn't know how you could do it for sinuses because the paddles were quite large and hot. But the Doc assured me that it could be done. So she called me into the room where the patient was lying on the table with one of the paddles on her chest. The other paddle was on the chair.

The Doc instructed me to sit down on the paddle and put my fingers on the patients forehead. I didn't really want to because those paddles get really hot, but I was always up for anything when it came to the Doc so I did. Then she turned the machine on and told me to move my fingers over the forehead and the energy from the diathermy machine would flow through my body and into the patent's head, thus killing the infection. And she left with a no means should I cross my fingers because it would cause the energy to spark and I could do serious damage to the patent's brain. I thought about saying, "Like on Ghostbusters?" but I knew that she wouldn't get it.

As you could imagine, I was a little skeptical. And throughout the session I kept asking the patient if she felt anything at all coming through my fingers and she said no. Which lead me to believe that the only thing getting diathermy that day was my butt.

*If you don't have a suggestion as to what to do about the leakage you could channel the Doc and tell me what you think she would say.


Anonymous said...

despite what the Doc may have told you, here's the bold, plain, hard truth: nothing REALLY works, except time.

God willing, you have plenty of that.

feel better! :)

Tammy said...

from my experience a humidifier helps me a lot when I have those symptoms.
But the Doc would say chop up a red onion and take it four times a day for three days.

Rach said...

Tim always sniffs salt water up his nose. Actually, ever guy I know that went on a mission to Brazil does it. He seems to think it helps a lot. It's the same idea as the Neti pot, I think. Mostly, I just stuff tissues up my nose and take a lot of cold medicine. I'm so sorry that you're leaking everywhere. I had the leaks a few months ago.

Liz W. said...

Hey, I employ the tissue-up-my-nose method too!

I wish there was a better way...I sometimes think this is just another reason why I'm not married... ;)

Andrea said...

I am going to miss those doctor stories so much. Good thing we've got Gary the CPA to keep us entertained. My friend just told me she works with a guy named Twig Winkle. I am a little disappointed that you don't work with Twig, I would enjoy reading a post about someone with that kind of name.

colleeeen said...

1. hot baths whenever possible. hot baths with some kind of camphor/menthol stuff added to them.

2. mentholatum or something similar. smear it on yourself before getting into that hot bath. smear it on after.

3. humidifier. if you need to buy a humidifier, get one that has a little tray where you can add - you guess- some kind of menthol liquid (you can get this rig at Target).

yes, you will smell distinctive for a few days. but this always helps me drain. so nice i can share these disgusting things with you.

Hannah said...

Oh Doc, I miss you already. I like her bacon cure. I think you should modify it just a hair. Instead of putting it on your neck I would put it on a plate to avoid messiness. And maybe fry it up nice and crispy. And maybe put a movie on, something austenish. Now you're

Amanda said...

I think ice cream works. I have never actually had sinus problems (sorry folks, don't hate me) but I think ice cream fixes everything, especially if you can eat it while taking a long soaking bath.

colleeeen said...

OK, what i didn't even notice the first time i read this is that you had a beatnik party. back in dec i bought an old 1950's party book that includes ideas for a beatnik party. i totally want to have one, too. it's a weird world.