Thursday, 1 May 2008

Cautious thumbs up

Well, so far so good. The antibiotics seem to be working, the football is slowly deflating and I am feeling pretty good, really. My brain is, however, mince through trying to monitor and organise taking these tablets.

Let me explain: I have to take one tablet, 4 times a day. Easy-peasy, yes? One before breakfast, lunch, dinner and one before bed. Job done. Ah, but there are rules. The tablets have to be taken on an empty stomach, either one hour before food or 2 hours after. And you can't have them with milk or dairy products because those interfere with the absorption of the medicine. Okay. So.

First tablet first thing in the morning. I am normally downstairs, dressed and possibly even showered (on a non-running day which these are because I am on antibiotics!) by about 7.15am. I have breakfast while I do the various chores involving lunchboxes and schoolbags and we leave the house by about 7.55. Huh. Need to get up at 6.30 to take first tablet and still have time for breakfast. You don't want to meet me in the morning if I haven't had breakfast. Right-o, I can do that (grudgingly).

On to the next tablet at lunchtime. Say 12 noon or thereabouts so I can leave an hour before I eat at 1pm. Oh but wait, I have to wait for 2 hours after eating so that means no snacking and no tea (I like a LOT of milk in my tea) from 10am onwards. Growl. I like my tea. I need my tea.

On a slightly grumpy roll now, next tablet to be taken before dinner. This should be easy. We normally eat about 8.30pm after the boys are in bed, so I can take my tablet at 7.30pm or thereabouts. Bags of time! But that means I can't eat from 5.30 onwards and that's when I get in from work and I am peckish and usually have a wee snack and/or a cup of tea to keep me ticking over and I am really really crotchety without it. Harrumph. This is starting to really annoy me. Anyone would think you weren't SUPPOSED to eat between meals.

Last lap. Final tablet before bed. We eat dinner at 8.30 so wait 2 hours and take it at 10.30. Except I am frequently in bed by then WITH A CUP OF TEA! And even if I am not in bed, kind husband will almost invariably have made me a cup of tea to drink whilst watching the news. (Do you think Hollywood will want to make a film of my life anytime soon?) And I might have some grapes or something by way of dessert. Can't do that. No tea or food between 8.30 and 10.30. I am now seriously ticked off. And don't even get me started on what happens when I get distracted and forget to take the tablet at the appointed time and then have to start doing long division in my head to figure out whether I am going to need to stay up until 4am to fit in my medication schedule.

I now know why people do not finish their course of antiobiotics. It is not that they are lazy or ignorant of the risk of allowing superbugs to incubate. They simply run out of the mental stamina needed to keep this up for 7 days.

Well, that was scintillating wasn't it? Anyway, had a little run at lunchtime for half an hour and felt fine so I think I am okay for the race on Sunday. I won't run again before then, I think, just to keep my reserves in, er, reserve. Little Brother's family are not faring so well. All 4 of them have been down with a pretty horrid flu-type virus. Both kids have recovered but of course they are not running. Sister in law is only just beginning to recover and she too is on antibiotics. She has, however, been medically advised not even to try running, so she is out. Little Brother is over the worst (he is no longer sweating and shaking and wishing for death) but he has a cough that is slowly but surely shaking his fillings loose. We will talk on the phone tomorrow and see how he feels. He has gallantly offered to run anyway and, since he is in a much faster section than I am, if he feels ropey, to stop or walk slowly until I catch him up and we can finish together. That sounds like a really nice idea. Unfortunately I suspect my dear brother has failed to appreciate just how spectacularly slowly I actually run. Even if he coughs out a lung in the middle of Holyrood Park, he is still going to finish before me.


  1. Oh dear, poor you (though less poor now). Daughter 2 has caught your bug (strong wind blowing from your house to ours?) - seems like tonsillitis to me. Where is one's medical student son when one needs him? New Zealand.

    "The Apprentice" - wouldn't miss it. Yes, the apostrophe thing! - though at least he cared. I always feel a bit uneasy about Mother's Day - I feel it should be Mothers' Day, but it never is. So I had some sympathy for him.

    Good luck for Sunday if I'm not back before then. I'm sure you can do it. I'm equally sure I couldn't.

  2. You are truly the first person I have ever known who actually followed that before/after meals bit. Truly. I give you kudos for that, becuae I just don't so it. Won't go without the food, no way. I saw you commented on April'd blog so headed over here to say hi!

  3. :( How rubbish. And missing out on all that tea is especially horrific! I remember when James was on antibiotics and other tablets for his wisdom tooth/infection. It was so complicated that we ended up drawing out a detailed chart so we could get it all right!! Hope you're okay for Sunday.

  4. I don't see why tea would have to be considered food, as long as it were plain with no milk or anything in it. Maybe you could ask the pharmacist if tea counts?

  5. Medicine should not involve math.

  6. No medicine should have to be taken without tea! And yes, I like mine with tons of milk too! However do they expect us to get well if we can't force the fluid of our choice?

    Feel better!!

  7. Looks to me like you could still drink your tea, or any other beverage that is clear. When we require fasting bloodwork at our clinic, we allow water and black coffee, so stands to reason unsweetened and "un-milked" tea would be ok. But then, you do like milk in your tea don't you? So, it might not be worth it to you. ;)

  8. Tablets that require the non-intake of tea should be banned under the terms of the human rights act. I mean, no tea first thing in the morning:? Which crackpot scientist invented that? Is it some sort of cruel experiment?

    PS - got here from Princesse Ecossaise. Think I'll have a look round ;)