What silly person would schedule their yearly medical check up for the day after the Thanksgiving break????
As the nurse adjusted and balanced the sliding weights on the 80 year old scales I said that I was absolutely positive those last 10 pounds only arrived between Thursday and Sunday!
As my blood was filling a couple of vials I suggested that we probably should take a few points off my cholesterol when the results come back too!
The only reading I did not try to correct or excuse was my blood pressure which was a very acceptable 112/75 . I think the nurse made a mistake – though she did it a second time after saying that it was “faint” and “perhaps it hasn’t woken up yet”. (my reading is normally much higher as I suffer white coat syndrome).
As I was about to escape for another 12 months the doctor noticed that there was no record of my having had a Tetanus shot here – ( I’d had one in Australia in 2000 as a requirement to getting my visa & Green card).
So after I’d been jabbed in my right arm (I was told “protocol” dictates they do the right) they gave me an information sheet with all the risks associated with the vaccine. The vaccine I was given is called Tdap as it protects against the trio Tetanus, Diphtheria and Pertussis (whooping cough).
The first bullet: Anyone who has had a previous life-threatening allergic reaction after a dose of (the) vaccine should not get Tdap.
The second bullet: Anyone who went into a coma or had a long seizure within 7 days after a dose of DTP or DTAP should not get Tdap.
Those things seem like something you should be asked before the jab!! Then there are a list of Mild Problems; Moderate Problems and Severe Problems along with the chances of each happening like: Headache (4 in 10); nausea, vomiting, diarrhea (1 in 5).
Now those things might put some people off having the shot but I had Whooping Cough in 1989 (as an adult) and it was a truly horrible disease – in fact it also gave me a severe headache, nausea and vomiting along with ruptured blood vessels in my eyes and debilitating muscle spasms in my neck and shoulders and left me with an inability to drink icy cold drinks.
I don’t have any experience with Tetanus but I’d rather avoid the whole lock jaw thing. And Diphtheria lesions look just nasty!
So I will put up with the incredibly sore upper arm and shoulder I have tonight!