Friday, August 26, 2011

Spider Bite?

A strange bump appeared on my calf a couple days ago. I thought maybe it was a mosquito bite. Wednesday it started to swell to the point where I searched for similar images on the internet to see if it might be something more severe. Yesterday, midway through my first meeting of the day, the pain and discomfort simply became too much. My streak of 19 months and 15 days needed to come to an end. I would finally see a doctor in India.

Having never been to the doctor I suggested to Lindsay that she come along and show me the way. Maybe I'm a wuss, maybe I just didn't have the adventurous spirit to try and figure out my way through a foreign hospital. I'm pretty sure it's mostly the wuss thing.

I've got to admit, the entire process was efficient. We walked into the front door of the hospital, explained my condition to the front desk guy (not that he was a trained medical professional), he made a phone call and got us an appointment with a general practitioner, and sent us to another desk to fill out a quick form. Once I filled out the form, we were asked to pre-pay, Rs. 100 for walking in the door and Rs. 800 for a consultation. $20 total. And that's "total"; not the co-pay, not the deductible. It was the total price for services. We were given directions to his office, waited a couple minutes, and then saw the doctor. He made a quick diagnosis, asked a few questions, answered a few questions (this is also why I brought Lindsay, she's pretty good at asking questions), and prescribed the necessary medications. After a quick stop at the pharmacy, we were out the door. I think we were back at the office in under an hour. My only complaint was that the 3 prescriptions, jar of anti-septic, and some sort of ointment were more expensive that expected. I've heard laughably low prices for drugs in this country. All of that cost just over Rs. 1000 (about $22); probably twice what I was expecting. But then again, that was the total price, not some sort of insurance subsidized amount.

After all of this, I'm sure you're wondering what the heck was wrong with me. Based on my scientific research using Google Image, my self-diagnosis was that I had a spider bite. I had even told people at the office this, including colleagues on my team, leading to a round of Spiderman jokes (from multiple sources). Mind you, I don't remember being bitten by a spider but I figured it just happened while I was sleeping. Not exactly a comforting thought, but what do I know?

The actual diagnosis? A hair follicle infection. If I felt like a wuss for dragging my wife with me, this diagnosis pretty much sealed that designation. 


  1. Most of the spider's are not much venomous for the human and just cause some rashes that goes in our favor but their are some breeds which are highly venomous to even kill the human if the particular person is not given anti-venom doses by some trauma centers .
    Brown Spider

  2. an spider bite?? wow you are lucky, once when I went to climb in the mountains there was a spider and bit me, but the worst part it was that the spider was poisonous and I was taken to the hospital immediately, fortunately I did not die LOL