No Antibiotics? But…

When I was a kid, I had the worst time with colds. I got sick as much as any other kid- which was a lot- and either me or my brother would get it first, then give it to the other. In most of the cases, my brother always got better after a while, meanwhile, I would just get worse and the cold would settle in my chest. I remember many a night coughing and wheezing with a humidifier blowing in the corner- it was a thing that happened every single winter, if not multiple times throughout the course of the school year.

Once I was so sick and my lungs so filled with phlegm that I awoke in the middle of the night, in a panic, thinking I couldn’t breathe at all. I managed to cry out though, and my Mom came and consoled me on the living room couch I was on, and that is the only thing that prevented me from hyperventilating and passing out entirely- her consoling me and telling me in that way that mother’s in the 1970’s did, before asthma inhalers were invented (or at least widely circulated).

The only way that I got out of wheezing and coughing was to go on antibiotics, time after time my brother got the same cold and got better, and I would have to see the doctor and be prescribed antibiotics. It was such a regular occurrence and bad enough, that I almost even stayed at the hospital a couple times- I remember the doctor asking if I wanted to, it was bad! Couldn’t breathe!

Finally when I was in my early 20’s I stopped getting bronchitis every time I got a bad cold, but this was after years and years and a couple really, really bad bronchitis episodes at the end that lasted months, one in which I had a broken rib for, so I really remember the excruciating torture of each cough. And finally, I just grew out of it. Or so I thought.

Now, 20 years later, I have bronchitis- that same old rasp in the left lung specifically it feels, and will not go away. My mother got the same cold, she’s fine now, but both me and my father are wheezing. I went to the doctor, but they refused to give me any antibiotics, saying that most cases of bronchitis are viral and can’t be treated by such. This was news to me. I asked for the scientific literature to back up what they were saying, because not using antibiotics directly contradicted my own observations and life experience. But they just gave me a patient info sheet on the subject.

I’ve tried to look into the scientific literature myself to see what evidence they have to support their new course of treatment- which is give you a inhaler and send you on your way without addressing any underlying issues, and it seems to be based upon this paper:

Principles of appropriate antibiotic use for treatment of uncomplicated acute bronchitis: background. Gonzales R1, Bartlett JG, Besser RE, Cooper RJ, Hickner JM, Hoffman JR, Sande MA; American Academy of Family Physicians; American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Medicine; Centers for Disease Control; Infectious Diseases Society of America. Ann Intern Med. 2001 Mar 20;134(6):521-9.

This paper states clearly on page one that “Microbiological studies of uncomplicated acute bronchitis identify a pathogen in the minority of cases, ranging from 16% to 40%” which means that in the majority of cases- 60 to 84%, they are actually unable to locate what exactly the underlying cause is to acute bronchitis.

To me it always has seemed like a secondary infection, particularly since my brother got the same bacteria and/or viruses that I did, but I was the one who ended up not being able to breathe while he got better. I believe that this is what antibiotics was treating, the secondary infection which is also why my spit would turn different colors and taste funny even. Because I had an INFECTION.

But let’s go back to the science and the literature and why they will no longer treat my lung infections with antibiotics.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Acute Bronchitis, ROSS H. ALBERT, MD, PhD, Hartford Hospital, Hartford, Connecticut Am Fam Physician. 2010 Dec 1;82(11):1345-1350.

In the very first table in this paper it states that the evidence rating for “Antibiotics should not be used routinely for the treatment of acute bronchitis” is a B. It states in the table “B = inconsistent or limited-quality patient-oriented evidence” which says that there really isn’t a whole lot of evidence to back up antibiotics not being used.  This paper also states, “The causative pathogen for bronchitis is rarely identified. In clinical studies, identification of the causative pathogen occurs in less than 30 percent of cases.” Which again means that in over 70% of the cases, they don’t actually know what caused it. Just saying it is a virus and not prescribing antibiotics to a person who will continue to be incapacitated by illness is really not adequate when the science says you don’t actually know what you are dealing with/talking about.

Ahhhhh, heeeeehhhhhhhemmmmmm!!! Excuse me!!!!

phlemthumb

When you do things not based upon science- like actual observations and data- but based upon your prejudices then people don’t really get the help they might need, but it certainly is like being in the middle ages without any medical treatment at all. Except we have inhalers now, so if I start hyperventilating because I think I can’t breathe, at least I have that to fall back on. Without that many a doctor might find they have lawsuits on their hands too, but I guess if you provide temporary relief without even dealing with or knowing what the cause is- that is enough “science” for medicine these days. Sad. No evidence to back them up whatsoever.

The Guillotine

the guillotine

the guillotine

the guillotine

is in the square

they chop

they chop

they chop

off people’s heads there

guillotine-16th-century-granger

If you don’t want to end up getting your head chopped off or want to watch

it is as simple as not going to “the square”

(surrounding yourself with others)

thus avoiding the whole situation.

 

 

 

 

Sometimes It Just Burns

Fire Start near Monitor and Sleepy Hollow Bridge

Fire Start near Monitor and Sleepy Hollow Bridge

Where I come from in the rural western US there are inevitably wildfires every summer to contend with. But in the last few years they seem to be greater in number, longer lasting, and more intense. Yesterday’s fire (June 28th, 2015) began near Monitor Washington, a small chimney of smoke I spotted early in the day, but didn’t worry too much. So unconcerned and used to fires I am, I decided to drive up to my friend’s house in the upper valley, past a wall of flame that was only stopped by the road and the river. On my way back I took these photos.

Air support flying over the fire.

Air support flying over the fire near Monitor outside of Wenatchee.

Fire Crews heading towards Wenatchee from Monitor

Fire Crews heading towards Wenatchee from Monitor area.

Fire heading into Wenatchee, photo looking South into Wenatchee from Easy Street.

Fire heading into Wenatchee, photo looking south into Wenatchee from Easy Street.

Chunk of fire debris that rained down all over town- exploding from one fruit warehouse only to ignite another downwind.

A chunk of fire debris that rained down all over town (photo taken the next day)- exploding from one fruit warehouse only to ignite more buildings downwind.

From a safe distance across the river I watched the Wenatchee firestorm- these are some of the photos taken with a tripod.

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The crowd was out in full force to watch the show with me, many evacuees from their homes and worried workers of the fruit packing warehouses.

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Flying chunks of exploding material can be seen in this photo which ignited other buildings, spread by the wind that seemed to kick up at just the wrong time.

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“When the world ends
You’re gonna come with me
We’re going to be crazy
Like a river bends
We’re going to float
Through the criss cross of the mountains
Watch them fade to nothing
When the world ends
You know that’s what’s happening now
I’m going to be there with you somehow…” – Dave Matthews Band, When the World Ends

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View from my backyard at about 11 PM. Thankfully there was a river between us and the fire.

View from my backyard at about 11 PM. Thankfully there was a river between us and the fire.

Smouldering remains the day after the fire from across the Columbia River.

Smouldering remains the day after the fire from across the Columbia River.

Mop-up of the fire the day afterward on some of the burned warehouses.

Mop-up of the fire the day afterward on some of the burned warehouses.

When Aliens Attack!

So let me get this correct.

Because you are so “smart” you invented an ATV to come up here and tear up this meadow, killing biological rarities left and right God worked on for millions of years without ever even acknowledging their existence, let alone valuing life itself, and ruined the hydrology of the entire system; and while you were here you decided to get out some guns and shot Bambi. Then I’m supposed to let you go because you are holding a beer and totally shitfaced? (i.e. it was all just for fun and you didn’t know nothin’)

WHAT PLANET ARE YOU FROM?

And you don’t want to talk, is this right? You want to just go on your merry way without thought let alone personal reflection upon your actions? CLASSIC!

usmarshall

Says “US” not just you last I looked.

That’s Cold

All I keep seeing is a cold sea (see)

vast

and just the tips of far huger things calved off of even more monumental things

and the floodwaters rise

I cannot get through to the upper decks where there is help

instead of this sure and certain tomb

and

I’M NOT GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU?

Is this correct?

titaniclowerdeck

Not so good at keeping it in perspective

but your opulence won’t save your soul, on the contrary…

your movies are here today, gone tomorrow

if they are good stories

they will just remake them anyway

and make someone else a star

but yet you still think I’ve got a thing for Leonardo DiCaprio?

Or that I want to be a star?

Do I idolize you so much I think I am you?

Never were good at relationships or keeping it in perspective

like what it is really ALL ABOUT

like the STORY

obviously even at the end you are still highly delusional in your top hats and coat tails with your fine ball room gowns in the finest of silk who can’t stop drinking Champagne long enough to put on life jackets and take very real threats to ALL seriously.

To treasure hunters:

A story shall you be given

the jewel you seek

falls to the deep!

But quite a story huh?

How about you and your kind learn something instead of just serving yourselves and your egos, making a whole lot of money and thinking you are God itself? How about never discriminate against others again? How about helping each other EQUALLY without prejudice?

Can you do that O’ Ancient Mariners?