Another Miracle Drug…

At the ripe old age of 77, life’s good. I had to get a new washing machine and bought it from the company, Life’s Good. This is the company’s logo.

That being said, my life isn’t perfect. Medically, all is under control…I think. I have given Modafinil a great deal of unsolicited positive advertising. I have ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), which, in my case, means that I have thousands of things floating around in my head all at once. While I benefit creatively from that ADD effect, concentrating on one thing at a time is extremely difficult. While talking with my neurologist, I happened to mention that my mind flits around like a bee in acres of spring flowers.

I’m like the bee on the right of the flower.

He gave me a script for Modafinil and told me to let him know whether it improves my focusing. In a couple of weeks, I was amazed. It truly does work and is my wonder drug.

The other issue that causes me medical concern is a skin problem. A year ago, I noticed that I had a rash on my back. I mentioned it to my internist during an annual checkup a year ago. He gave me a prescription for hydrocortisone cream. It didn’t work. He then gave me another prescription, which wasn’t any more successful. Finally, he sent me to a dermatologist, Dr Garritson.

Dr. Garritson gave me prednisone for three weeks, which worked on my back, but the rash moved to my shins. For several months, we experimented with different salves and drugs. I was even sent to a special tanning bed. We tried varying combinations of treatments. While all the drugs controlled the rash from spreading, none of them cured me. I routinely kidded her that my diagnosis was that I had leprosy. She assured me that she didn’t think that I was correct. However, she might investigate it if all else fails.

During this long process of varying treatment plans, Dr. Garritson did two biopsies. The first result was that I had spongiotic dermatitis with eosinophilic spongiosis. The second biopsies a couple months later came back as superficial perivascular inflammation with eosinophils. I asked Dr. Garritson whether either diagnosis was terminal. She assured me that neither diagnosis was going to results any life-threatening problem. Essentially, both diagnoses were merely different ways of saying the same thing…eczema, or what I call a very itchy rash.

The next treatment was Dapsone. I knew that I was rapidly approaching a very serious drug. This time, after we discussed Dapsone, I looked up the drug on the Internet. It didn’t take me long to discover it works well with patients suffering from leprosy. We laughed a lot when I mentioned that I probably had leprosy. Dr. Garritson said that if all else failed…she would look into treating me for leprosy.

Dr. Garritson ordered many blood tests, which included before starting on the drug and several times while I was on it. I started with 25mg for a couple of weeks. Then it was increased to 50mg. Finally, after a couple of months, I was up to 200mg. I was still using the salve and the tanning bed. The concern that Dr. Garritson had was not leprosy, but the drug lowers one’s immune system. I was on Dapsone while in Pakistan and Myanmar during winter break. My immune system was lowered, and it seemed like I had a cold.

When I returned from my trip, we discussed another treatment. Dupixent replaced Dapsone. It is a shot that is given every other week. The first time that I took Dupixent, it was two shots each of 300mg. From then on, I will get one shot of 300mg. every other week.

Finally, my Dupixent arrived. Ginger guarded the refrigerated box with four syringes of Dupixent while I explained to a neighbor that I didn’t have the coronavirus.

After allaying the fear of my neighbor, I took the refrigerated box inside. Ginger thought that it was a treat for her.

I checked the TransTracker to make sure that the medicine arrived at the correct temperature.

Finally, I transferred the two boxes that contained four syringes to my refrigerator.

This is Dr. Garritson explaining this medical procedure.

The caveat to this treatment plan was that Dr. Garritson would have her nurse give me the first shot. I was asked, which arm I’d prefer. Essentially, it was a teaching moment for me. I now was in medical school.

I had to inject the second shot. Once Dr. Garritson was sure that I could manage, I could leave the office. So, I checked for any air in syringe.

I was amazed how easy it was. I really didn’t feel the needle at all.

If Dupixent works, it will be my second miracle drug, and life will be good. Perhaps, our fake president might want to suggest having me give people with the coronavirus shots of what he considers his miracle drug, hydroxychloroquine. I’ll be waiting to hear from him after Easter when things get back to normal two weeks from now. Hydroxychloroquine might cause 330,000 Americans to say, “Life’s Good.”

If you need a dermatologist for anything including leprosy,
Dr. Emily Garritson, M.D.
Northern Indiana Dermatology
3190 Lancer St.
Portage, IN 46368