Freaking Out Squares

Friday, September 08, 2006

Drugs Are Bad, Mmmkay?

I’ve been doing a little research into my dad’s intestinal condition, which as you’ll recall he developed after taking clindamycin after having a tooth removed. (It can also be spelled “clyndamicin.” If you type the former in on Google, you’ll get a lot of official websites; if you do the latter, you’ll get a lot of message boards for people who’ve had similar trouble with the drug.) It’s been two months, and he hasn’t been able to get rid of it. The hell of it is, he was given clindamycin as a preventive measure, not to treat an existing infection. Naturally, he’s pretty pissed off to be so full of shit.

Many people who take clindamycin develop a condition called Clostridium Difficile Colitis, also known as c. diff. With c. diff, the “bad” bacteria—the clostridia difficile—kill all the “good” bacteria, thereby generating a lot of shit, to put it bluntly. Sometimes this condition can be cleared up in a few weeks. In other cases, it takes more than a year. Many people who take clindamycin develop it, to the point that the pharmaceutical companies developed a drug, Flagyl, to combat its aftereffects.

At this point, we aren’t sure if my dad has full-blown colitis. He’s taken Flagyl, which has helped up to a point. Just when he thinks he’s in the clear, he has another attack. Fortunately, in our case, it’s been more of a pain in the ass (literally and figuratively) than anything else. My dad’s secretary’s sister took clindamycin, developed c. diff, and lost seventy pounds over the course of a year. As portly people, my dad and I have joked about losing seventy pounds, but that’s a hell of a way to do it. And no, I am not recommending you take clindamycin if you want to lose weight by shitting your brains out.

In fact, I’ll say it again—please do not take this drug unless you have to. Even the NIH website warns you not to take it if you develop severe cramping and bloody stool.

And while we’re in PSA mode, when it comes to street drugs, lay off the hard stuff. You don’t know what you’re getting, and you’ll probably end up getting shot.

Have a nice weekend, kids! Check out my friend Tessa Souter and her torch songs tonight at 9:30 at Joe's Pub in NYC.

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