In the Name of Science

After my ivy intervention I went to Provincetown for fun and frolic. When I was feeling punky and running a little fever on Monday night I didn’t think much of it. But Tuesday morning I had a rash all over my stomach and felt horrible. I decided to work from home and hope it cleared up. I called my doctor to see if it was poison ivy. Not after more than 48 hours, and not with a fever, they said.

I’m not really one to bare my stomach in public, let alone on the interwebs, but in the name of science, by Wednesday morning it looked like this:


No good. I felt like my skin was on fire and I wanted to claw it right off. Called the doctor and got a 3 pm appointment. Tried to work but by 1:30 I was punky again and lay down with How It’s Made. Learned about Stetson hats and soapstone sinks. And went to the doctor.  We went through my symptoms and the time frame on the poison ivy exposure. The doc agreed that it was all wrong for ivy.

Then the physical exam. Looks like shingles, he said, but weird that it crosses the midline. He put my symptoms through a computer checklist which came back with a dermatitis caused by sea bird poo. Bottom line: there is a narrow window where suppressive therapy might work for shingles, and steroid treatment for dermatitis doesn’t derail that. So now I’m on double duty pharmaceutical intervention and hoping that I’ll be able to stop sleeping with socks on my hands soon.


4 responses to “In the Name of Science

  1. ouch. i’m sorry- that looks rather uncomfortable.

    • Yes, having itchy sores inside your belly button is a unique kind of discomfort. And it’s all around pretty crummy…

  2. I think you left out the part where you rolled around in sea bird poo.

    • I thought it fair to leave that out once the shooting nerve pain made it clear that I have shingles and not avian-feces-itis.

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