Friday, September 16, 2011

i was in the hospital

The chart above shows hands played this month to-date. I am not seeing a lot of homeruns lately. Times like these, I am putting in money in the pot for my meta-game. At least I am above breaking even.

I wasn't able to play yesterday. I went to visit my doctor about a boil in my back that was bothering me. It started out like a pimple, but now it was almost the size of my palm. When the doctor saw the 'boil' she adamantly insisted that I take it to the hospital and have a surgeon take care of the abscess--TODAY. I asked her if it was something I should worried about. Yes, she said. What complicates things, she mentioned was that it was sitting right in the middle of my back, where my spine was. She then called the hospital, spoke to a surgeon and told them I was coming.

The last time I was in the hospital was back in 1982 in manila. I had typhoid fever. There was a lot of anxiety in me. It was a bump that had been on my back for at least three months. It got swollen and painful these last few days. I was scaring myself shitless worrying if it was a tumor.

When the surgeon saw that thing, I immediately asked--is it cancer, or can lead to cancer. His answer--NO.

He explained that it was a sebaceous cyst that got infected. He then gave me two choices. Do I want it removed under local anesthesia (with a lot of pain), or go into surgery where they put me to sleep. I chose that they put me to sleep. I then explained that I was not yet permanent resident. Would it cost me anything? He said it might, but wasn't sure. I kept to my decision. So they brought me to that ward where all the patients scheduled for surgery.

While lying in bed, I kept thinking to myself that we might not be able to afford it if I went into surgery. When the doctor came back, he explained that he wasn't sure about my immigration status, but it might cost $1000 to $2000. I told him I want it removed under local anesthetic.

And it hurt a lot.


It was really painful. The abscess was as big as my palm. You can just imagine how much pus was in there. It hurt when I touched it lightly. This time, the doctor was making injections around the area to anesthetize it, making it numb for the procedure.

I was sent home later that night. I was prescribed with some antibiotics and told to come back in two weeks so a surgeon can remove the cyst, otherwise, the infection will come back, and god knows what. The clinic can change the dressing on the wound every three days until I get that cyst removed.

The upside to all this experience was that we never paid a single dollar. I was in that surgical ward for three hours. They were giving me all these medications, IV solutions to keep me hydrated, and antibiotics preparing me for the surgery. I was thinking all that time that all this was going to cost at least $100.

There were three filipino nurses there that kept me company. Us pinoys love to mingle with other pinoys when we see one here in nz. After the doctor took care of the abscess, one of the pinoy nurses told me that, if I had this procedure done in manila, a neurosurgeon would have handled the procedure. That would easily have cost Php250,000.

We didn't pay a single dollar.*

I love it here!

As an aside, I arrived at the hospital at 11am. I got out at 7pm. I did not mind waiting, in fact, I enjoyed it. Everywhere I looked I'd find HOT women--doctors, nurses, patients and their visitors. I felt like I was taking part in a live episode of Grey's Anatomy ;p

* you'd probably feel the same way I did if you grew up in a third world country.

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