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(Possible) Staph Infection Update

I'm not exactly sure what's going on. Either my Eritrean doctor is accustomed to third world disease and can spot it with the naked eye or he's incredibly lax in his medical duties. Or I'm a total and complete hypochondriac.

Yesterday I finally get him to see me and he looks at the boil intently, squeezes it a little, asks me if it hurts (it does), and whether it was discharging anything yellow (I don't think it is, but I clean it a lot). He then says it's hard to tell at this stage what exactly is wrong although there is clearly an infection of some kind. Just to be sure, he puts me on two different kinds of antibiotics: Bactrim DS and Doxycycline. If used in conjunction for 7 days, apparently those do the trick. Strangely, though, he doesn't do a test for it. I asked him why not and he said whether it is or it isn't Staph, I have some sort of infection. And if it is Staph, these two antibiotics together should be more than enough to kill it or any other infection.

Even if this is a total false alarm, I'm glad I actually went to the doctor. Staph turns ugly very quickly and since I'm headed to Las Vegas for 6 days starting tomorrow, I wanted to figure out what was wrong before I traveled. I've had all sorts of nicks and dings in my life, particularly after serving in the Marines. I once got an absolutely vicious case of cellulitis on the back of my left heel in the field that the field medical officer diagnosed as being a "'C' on a scale of A to E; A being perfect health and E being gangrene". In other words, I caught it just before it became very serious. Because of experiences like that, I've become accustomed to looking for insect bites, cuts and scrapes that aren't healing the way they should. This newest boil (or whatever it is) caught my eye before I got in the shower. I noticed discoloration in a circle around the opening and the last time I had that, it turns out I had Lyme Disease (another ailment I prevented from doing serious damage by going to the doctor early). So as aforementioned, Staph or not, I think the trip was justified.

If you train, make it a habit of giving your body a once over in the mirror before you go to bed every night. Yes, that sounds incredibly effeminate, but it will do you favors over the long run. We have a tendency to glance over flesh injuries with the naked eye. The mirror actually provides a new angle from which to view the body and can often reveal glimpses into injuries that a simple glance downward never could. Maybe nothing happens this time, but it's vigilance and early detection that keep you - and your training partners - healthy.

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