Thursday, September 21, 2006
Shingles, herpes, what's in a name? 


Shingles is no fun.

It was amusing for all of an hour when the doctor first diagnosed me and I actually looked forward to being able to stay home and do absolutely nothing.


"How did I get shingles?"

"Well, let me explain... Basically when you get chickenpox, the virus stays in your body for the rest of your life. But later on, when your immune system is particularly weak, for example if you contract cancer and am undergoing chemotheraphy, or when you are old in age... or if you are under a lot of stress, it awakens the virus and that's when it becomes shingles."

"Oh, it's probably stress." I thought out loud, by simple process of elimination since I neither have cancer nor am old in age.

The scary thing is that I didn't even know that I was that stressed. I was honestly enjoying Analytics and didn't realize the strain that it was putting on my body.

"Can I get a day off?" I asked, and he laughed.

"Are you sure you only need one day off? I usually give my patients up to a week of medical leave."

I paused in contemplation.

"Okay, give me two days off then."

And then he proceeded to inform me that the rash will continue to spread to half of my body like an insiduous disease (Google tells me it's a dermatone) and it may turn to pus-filled blisters and the pain will hurt to the bone and be unbearable at times because it starts from a nerve in your spine, and that even after the lesions have healed, the pain will remain for another 2-3 months.

Oh, but just in case you need even more depressing news,
this page provides the most negative outlook possible. I bet the pyscho was sniggering while he wrote it.

My mum is convinced I have the snake disease which will eat me up from inside and ensure me a quick death.

"Why don't you ask to be hospitalized?" she asked in all seriousness when I asked her to help apply medicated cream to the blisters on my back. And you thought I was the drama mama.

I have to take 2 Aclyclovir pills 5 times a day to slow down the virus and 1 Amitriptyline pill (which is usually prescribed as an anti-depressant) before bed time. And use Chlorhexidine to wash the rashes and then apply Bactroban cream to them.

I wear old roomy tee-shirts and spend my days eating ice cream sandwiches and instant noodles, watching trashy cable TV and sleeping a lot. I am almost done with my book and am going to rewatch my Gilmore Girls Season 1 DVD.

I miss the real world and uncle's kopi kao.



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Female. Singaporean
Traveller. Bookworm.
Coffee Addict.
Amateur Photographer.
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