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I never knew what an abscess was until I moved out here  to India.  And even then, not until after the birth of my fourth child.  Back in August 2003, I was working quadruple shifts, caring for my (then) new baby and taking care of my three older children under ten years old.  I developed what seemed to be an irritating boil on the skin below the right shoulder and above the right breast.  I just ignored it, thinking it would go away in due course.  In what seemed to be  the blink of an eye, the 'boil' swelled, hardened, reddened and developed not one, but several 'heads'.  And I was literally crying with pain.  I did not know what to do.  My husband was extremely busy with work and having taken a few weeks off to assist me in the aftermath of my delivery, had a big backlog on which to catch up at the office.  I didn't want to bother him, as he has to commute to the neighbouring city every day and was already under a lot of stress.

However, once I showed the 'boil' to my father in law, something started to happen.  He got some medicines for me and told me to rest as much as possible.   The abscess (for indeed that is what it was) proved to be extremely messy once it ripened and had to be dressed at least twice a day.  Somehow, we managed.  But I lived on  painkillers for at least a week.  The following year the same thing happened on the same area of  the body, but on the left side.  This time I went to see my friend and neighbour  Dr. Shivani, who works in a government hospital.  She immediately prescribed injectible antibiotics - two injections twice daily.  And this went on for at least eight days.  She also recommended a really firm bandage, not a mere dressing.

Abscesses can leave messy scars.  Mine have faded with time,  but they're still there, and when I examine the scars left the the abscess which was not treated by the doctor and the scars left by the one which was, there is a significant difference.  The one which the doctor treated is neater, and healed much faster.

So two days ago, while I was getting dressed, I noticed an emerging lump on my back.  I couldn't see it of course, but it was rather ominously painful.  I thought 'not again'.  Sure enough, within twenty four hours it had swollen to probably thrice it's original size and was so uncomfortable I felt as if  someone had stuck a knife into me.  So in the evening, I went to see Dr. Shivani.  Again I'm on the programme of two injections, morning and evening.  And of course, painkillers and ointments.  The doctor gave me two injections in the evening.  She has inserted a needle into my vein and taped it on so all my injections can be given at one site.  In the morning Yash had to give me the  injections before he went to work as the doctor has to go to  her hospital.  I'll go and see  Dr. Shivani in the evening for the next injections.  I have to keep checking in with her.  I am really blessed  to have a doctor for a neighbour, who is also a friend.  With Yash more or less permanantly out of town, I don't have the tension of having to travel or organise a lift to go to a doctor.  And although I do pay her, she hardly takes a penny from me anyway.  When my children are sick, it is such a help to know that she is nearby.

When Yash was giving my injections this morning, I couldn't help but reflect on the irony of  the situation.  He has been more or less permanently depressed since the recent death of his father, and is often bad tempered and irritable.  I had been thinking that it would be so nice if the two of us could have some time with each other and do something interesting together.  Oh, like go for a walk or something.  We never have time for anything like that nowadays.  Him giving me injections is definitely NOT what I had in mind.  But I suppose it's better than nothing!

Anyway, the good news is that the abscess is healing up now.  And I know I'm fortunate to have Dr. Shivani nearby.  As Shakespeare said: "all this is comfort!  Wherefore weep I then?"


  1. Does the doctor have any idea what's causing it? Good luck!

  2. Ouch! I hope it heals quickly.

    I am interested in the use of antibiotics through injection versus by mouth.

    In America, you might receive the first dose of meds by injection, but the rest would be given in pill form by mouth.

    Even then it's a" might" receive an injection rather than a standard thing.

    Sorry you have to go through that ... :(

  3. Sounds miserable, but I'm so pleased you have a doctor that you know, like and trust near by. That must make all the difference. Try to rest and get better soon. x

  4. Thanks Gaelikaa for stopping by I really appreciate that. I love Bryan Adams too :)

  5. How uncomfortable for you, it was good that Yash was able to help with injections. The modern butterfly needles are great and save us from becoming colanders!

  6. Thank you for dropping by my blog Maria :)

    Im so sorry to hear about the recurring abscess. To tell you the truth i didn't even know what it was until I read about it in your post.

    Hoping that it never returns and you get a chance to have many walks with your hubby :)

  7. I was just about to ask the same as CheerfulMonk. There must be a root cause, which needs investigating I would have thought? It sounds painful and the injections can't be much fun. Get well very soon
    Linda x

  8. I hope you abscess gets healed soon. i believe that you should find the root cause of this 'cos that is really important.

    I believe that you and your husband should spend a little time together.

    Sometimes, you don't really understand, but inside you really miss spending time with your loved one.

    Hope things get better soon.

  9. Ouch! So sorry you are enduring this, but glad to know you know what to do and that you're doing it and seem to be in good spirits.

  10. Poor you. You might want to take some supplements like Garlic or Echinasia to help boost your immune system. It might help in preventing the next one. I'll bet you were more vulnerable due to the stress you've been under lately. Hope you heal quickly.

  11. Hey there, thanks for dropping by!

  12. Just loved this post... coming from SITS. Random, but are you going to Bloggy Boot Camp in Baltimore?

  13. Ouch and double ouch :(

    Hope it heals up quickly - take it easy if you can. Never had an abcess apart from a dental one.

  14. Do hope you feel well.

    Aloha, new Friend!

    Comfort Spiral

  15. My brother had a boil when he was a kid and nearly died from it. It turned into a Staph infection and he was in the hospital for a week. Anything with infection in it can be dangerous!

  16. That sounds very painful. I am glad you are getting the care you need. I hope the problem disappaers.

  17. Hello:)

    Greetings from this side of the sunny south:)

    Your post leaves me worried. While I am not an expert on this,recurrence of the abscess on different parts of the body is something which needs thorough check up at a proper well equipped hospital.The temporary treatment you are getting from your friendly doctor may not offer a permanent solution.

    I hope you can persuade your husband to take a few days off and take you to a good hospital for check up. I am sure he can get some leave for this purpose.

    My hearty congratulations to you for managing four young children single handedly. I know it is a tough task.

    My prayers and best wishes to you:)

  18. Its not only the kids then Gaelika, we have abcesses in common as well. I had to get mine opened up by a surgeon and drained, This was followed by 2 weeks of alternate day dressings, but true, when a doctor tends to it, the scar heals completely and the chance of recurrance is also reduced. all the very best to you with the current one, and do take care.

  19. Does the doctor seem concerned about the constant return of the abscesses? I hate that you have to be in so much pain.

  20. Oh OUCH!!!!!

    I'm sorry for your husband's depression. :(

  21. is this something common in india?

  22. I wish Gaelikaa that you get well very soon! Probably, it's the Indian heat that creates such problems.

    I have made another wish that you and Yash get on a date somewhere on the beaches of a place like Andaman and Nicobar. Oh, what a place! I'm seeing me and my wife already there!!

  23. I hope this is the last time you'll have to endure such discomfort and pain. I wish you all the best!

  24. Gosh that sounds really nasty. Fingers crossed this is the last one now, you don't want anymore of them.

    And thank you for your lovely comment which you left on my blog post.

    CJ xx

  25. I do hope you are feeling more comfortable now. Sounds as if you have been laid more low than it appears on the surface by recent events and looking after others. Let other people look after you for a while when you get the chance.

  26. That does sound painful and I hope it gets better through time or with the use of medications. Have a great week.

    Stephen Tremp

  27. Oh my goodness are you ok?! I hope it gets better! This post had me on the edge of my seat!! Thanks for stopping by, I'd love any of your childrearing advice! haha, I'm always asking for it! :)


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