Wednesday, December 2, 2009

*scratch scratch scratch*

As previously discussed here and here, Hope has had a terrible problem with her skin for the past few months. She has been to several different doctors and the diagnosis has consistently been eczema. Well, over the past few weeks Sam, my mom, my dad, and my brother have all started itching. All have been to the different doctors and each time the illness has been proclaimed eczema.

Then my dad demanded a skin biopsy.

Then the biopsy results came back yesterday as SCABIES.

Yes, itchy mites that burrow in the skin to lay an egg and then creep to another area of the body -- all the while leaving traces of fecal matter -- to lay yet another egg. They have 8 legs, are highly contagious, and itch like hell.

Hope has been afflicted with this for at least 3 to 6 months.

Needless to say I flipped my shit. I jumped on the computer and googled "scabies infestation". OMG the terrible things on message boards, forums, and -- yes -- blogs. "They never go away!" "Throw away everything!" "Light yourself on fire!"

Then my library assistant brain kicked in and I thought that I should evaluate my sources. Would I cite these in a paper? Hell-to-tha-naw. If scabies is this bad, this rampant, and unable to be annihilated then there would be media hoopla; after all, scabies is highly contagious, we'd all be walking around teeming with teeny mites on our bodies. Fuck zombies, everyone would have a scabies contingency plan and be shooting relatives who scratch. Okay, no more random Google searching.

I thought of several reputable sources (all with org. and .gov in the URL). Off I went to the Center for Disease Control and the New York State Health Department. Guess what? There is no reason to razor off my skin while on a bender. Correctly using the prescribed cream, washing the clothes in hot water and then drying in a hot dryer, vacuuming upholstery and beds, and bagging un-washable items that are frequently used for a week were all sensible recommendations. After I was armed with this information I checked out some NetLibrary books my library offers and did some good searching on cleaning methods. In addition to the washing and vacuuming I'm going to use Borax on the laundry. A few times a week I'll Borax the beds and sofa as well. We are all taking hot showers twice a day with a clean towel and washcloth each time and I'm washing clothes and towels daily.

Hopefully, my plan of not coating myself in napalm will work. Hope is excited, if scabies is the problem and her skin clears up she can introduce dear, sweet corn into her life again. Also, I can write this down as another adventure; how often can one say the words "scabicide" and "taint" in a sentence? And yes, it does mean what you think.

The only other good advice I found on the interwebs was from Michael Ian Black, he claims that ice cream should be eaten. So, comedian's orders, I polished off the last of the Publix Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream tonight.

* Scabie art by Hope, of course.


Catherine said...

eff zombies indeed.

Thomas at My Porch said...

Shame on the doctors for not diagnosing properly. Good for your dad for demanding a biopsy.

It is easy to get loopy about these kinds of infestations. It will take some time and effort, but you will prevail.

Andi said...

Well I'm glad to hear that it's something curable and not corn-related! Wishing you well with your washing and disinfecting, and I'm sure all will be right soon.