Open Thread COVID 19 – What You Need to Know About Testing

Open Thread COVID 19 – What You Need to Know About Testing April 8, 2020

Hola! This is a post I never thought I’d have to write. As many of you know I have had lifelong bad asthma, and recently it has gone nuclear nutty.  After 9 days of up and down asthma I finally put down the copious drugs I’ve been taking and drug my carcass over to the doctor to see if I was missing something.

Being that this is Costa Rica, and not the United States I was in the doctor’s office yesterday afternoon and some 2 hours later had been given a chest x ray, blood tests and an examination. Turned up that I have a virus. Seeing we are in the middle of this pandemic I have been officially quarantined and visited by the Ministeria de Salud (heath dept) this morning and given the COVID 19 test. 12 short hours between the doctors office and the test.

I will know if I have it in 3 days. by the weekend surely.

This was a huge surprise to me because since early March I have stayed at home with the exception of a few very necessary forays to get groceries and one quick Nicaraguan border run to keep my drivers license and visa active. I have scrubbed, I have hand washed, I have worn my mask and gloves, I have used oodles of hand sanitizer.  Yet it looks like I have likely contracted it. It drives home the point that no matter how careful you are we are all truly at risk.

Only have one symptom of the illness, apparently I am one of those not very symptomatic people. I feel almost fine, just like this is regular asthma. I am now on day ten of this thing. Because I am insane about keeping up with my asthma the chest x ray shows almost no fluid in my lungs. Apparently whipping in oodles of nebulizer meds have done a number on whatever this is.

Likely my exposure point was that quick trip up to Nicaragua to renew my visa and drivers license on March 16th. Ironically I was screened at both border operations for COVID 19, a short exam and a lot of questions.

Here’s what you need to know that I have learned about this experience. If you have symptoms go get tested, even if it is only one or two symptoms. While you may not have access to the test there are ways to make sure you get tested if you need it. I’m hearing that they are refusing to test a number of folks in the U.S. But you can get your doctor to run a CBC panel that will tell them if you have any of the markers in your blood that you have a virus.  It’s a start, it will tell them if you need to be tested further as soon as possible.

The test itself isn’t that bad, no matter what they are claiming in the media. Instead of a swab they ran a fine tube up my nose and down into the back of my throat to take the sample. As long as you relax your neck, shoulders and face it will not hurt. It’s not fun, it’s uncomfortable, but it’s quick! I have had way worse medical tests.

Photos of the health dept. workers gearing up under my garage to test me this morning.

I am tired but feel perfectly fine. I have already taken a dose of medication issued by my doctor, both a Z Pack and Hydroxycloroquine. I was given the meds immediately and am now under a government quarantine until my test comes back.

Except for one thing. I am itching to flip the bird at Nancy Campbell with her silly declaring you will not get it, and she knows no one with it. I want to middle finger Lori Alexander and her crap today about how people cause their own chronic illnesses by their choices, and only those evil liberal women running around working will contract this. I desire to wallop possible super spreader Jill Rodrigues up side of the head with my bird for ignoring all the stay at home orders. Horrid people like these and their idiocy are making this spread happen and happen way faster by their toxic ideas, and disregard for everyone else.

I have to brag on the Costa Rican health care system. 12 hours from doctor’s test to the health dept showing up with the COVID test. I was not charged penny one for the testing or the drugs. This happened quickly and efficiently here in a  second world country with universal healthcare that does not have the most money in the government coffers. What the hell U.S.? Why is this quick treatment not happening in the States? If Hydroxycloroquine is the answer why isn’t it being used immediately  in the States?

One thing is for sure. I’ve already signed up to give plasma when this is all over if I have Coronavirus. Costa Rican scientists are already working on a plasma based treatment for severe cases. I am not likely to be a severe case at all.

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About Suzanne Titkemeyer
Suzanne Titkemeyer went from a childhood in Louisiana to a life lived in the shadow of Washington D.C. For many years she worked in the field of social work, from national licensure to working hands on in a children's residential treatment center. Suzanne has been involved with helping the plights of women and children' in religious bondage. She is a ordained Stephen's Minister with many years of counseling experience. Now she's retired to be a full time beach bum in Tamarindo, Costa Rica with the monkeys and iguanas. She is also a thalassophile. She also left behind years in a Quiverfull church and loves to chronicle the worst abuses of that particular theology. She has been happily married to her best friend for the last 33 years. You can read more about the author here.
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