2nd week ended. It all just flew by. The week was filled with alternating shift, AM/PM with another student, either working the ER/inpatient or having own consult room. I would see my own patients, write the notes, recommend the labs and take a guess at the diagnoses. Since the diagnoses were tropical medicine, more times than not, I have answered the wrong ones. But I’m definitely seeing some new diagnoses like malaria, bilharzia, pneumonia, acute gastro, tropical dermatology. The ER/inpatient work consist of drawing blood, shots and seeing patients that came through ER. It was comfortable work for me cuz I just finish a month of peds EM and having done IVs during my anesthesia months.
Interesting association - pneumonia is often associated with diarrhea or distended stomach. Both adults and peds. Any explanation? I don’t really see it at home.
Saw a kid with DEET overdose. The kid had a mosquito in the net the night before, so the dad decides to spray the kid with 98% DEET that is intended for the net, I presumed. The kid reacted with hives and throwing up like crazy. Very much like systemic reaction from the DEET. But what are the DEET poisoning symptoms?
An amazing thing happened. One of the patient lives on the same hill where I’m staying and saw me leaving one day and offered me a ride back. People here are genuinely nice, open and friendly. I’m not just talking about the native Ugandans but also the ex-pats that have moved here for various reasons. Back home, offers like this wouldn’t come and if they did, we most likely wouldn’t accept it.
During this week, I had a patient that asked specifically to see me. It felt really good that I’m doing something right and that I’m actually going to be a doctor in 6 weeks time. It finally made me realize that I’m no longer playing pretending to be a doctor. Yippee!!
Took a walk to Garden City Mall after work one day. It’s the only modern mall in Kampala, but it’s not like the ones at home. The variety of stores is, clothing, electronics, grocery, food court, bookshop. But the building itself is a mix between indoor and outdoor mall. It’s almost like they put really nice street stalls together into the building.
Also spent sometime walking around the street stalls/shops around the old taxi park. There’s stalls for clothers, electronics, food, textile, and anything you can think of. Sometimes a store front has multiple stalls sharing the store. At the taxi park, it’s madness and chaos but at the same time, it’s somewhat orderly as well. There are taxis trying to get near the park to drop passengers off and get into the park to pick up passengers for the return trip. Seriously walking around to get into the park involves looking out for the bodas and the bumper to bumper taxis. Once in the park, walk between the tightly packed taxis to get the ones that are under the needed destination signs.
I did finally get sick, but not the gastro kind. Caught a full blown cold from the ferry ride back on Mon and just caught up to me on Fri. Thought it was allergies at first on Wed but didn’t realize it was building up already. Managed about 1/2 day on Fri at the clinic before just felt bad enough that I wouldn’t do much good at the clinic. Was call “prima donna” by Dr. Stockley. haha. He was the one who told me that all the students came through got sick the first week. I managed not to get sick till the end of second week. Of course that was the day that I had to get fruits for the fruit salad for Els’ good bye and fondue party. With me being sick, I could hardly pay attention to what I was buying, bought some not ripe mangoes and avocado. But I did manage to buy a good pineapple. What a complete ditz. Haha.
Had dinner with neighbor. Met new people and had a good time. Fondue/Goodbye party for Els at the guesthouse for great. The food was yummy and we chatted on the balcony. It was really nice to be able to see everyone together since during the week, we are pretty scattered schedule wise. Els - Belgian at BTC in urban planning. Debby - Belgian teaching Dutch at Netherland school. John - Irish working for Irish NGO who’s been traveling a bit for work. Alistair - British med student at the Surgery. Rosada - British med student at Korsu hospital. Emma - British workin on biodegradable waste management/recycling. Claire - Landlady teaches at an international school. Olivia - Claire’s daughter who is a very baker, swimmer and an author. The weather was great so we were still outside even after dark. We watched Goal, a football chick flick. Good times.
Got a night of diarrhea from a chicken salad with mayo sandwich. It happened twice. You would think after the 1st time, I would learn, but nope. It had to happen twice before I figure out it was the mayo. Gotta remember mayo + heat is not good.
Noticed this week that the Ugandans are calling me “Chinese” more that “Muzungu”. Perhaps I’m more tanned this week that I look more like the Chinese in Kampala. How interesting.