The Pharmacy Chick

Flying the coup in retail

Salmonella…its not Italian for “Salmon”

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 10:43 pm on Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Monday started out like any other day with the exception of the fact I woke up feeling like  my legs were shaky.  I went on my morning walk with my neighbor and even commented to her that my legs felt weak. I also had a bit of diarrhea..(!?!)  I had to work that day at 1 pm so I had some lunch at noon then went off to work.  I didn’t feel all that great, but  that wouldn’t have been the first time.  When I got out of my car to walk into work I felt down right crappy and upon going into the pharmacy at 1 pm ( to find them buried under work) said “man, of all the days to feel lousy..I don’t feel my best guys”…and went about checking rx’s..

I sent my partner to lunch…and a few minutes later that hot nausea overtook me and I said..”BATHROOM TIME” and marched out. Lunch made its appearance again shortly thereafter. What the heck?  I had gone from feeling crappy to officially ILL.  I called the scheduler and told her that I think I needed to leave.  I returned to the pharmacy redfaced and looking worse for wear..  “what happened to you?” asked Tech extraordinare?  “Um, puked..I think I am sick” was about all I could say.  I hoped it was over.

It was shortlived.

My entire body was falling apart.  My hands were shaking, my legs barely held my weight and my stomach was performing gymnastics maneuvers.  My last phone call took all my energy.  I hung up, put my head on the counter and said. ” I think I am going to die right here”.

My Man Friday blessed me by saying “Go home, I’ll finish your shift, Ive been there”.  My techs, afraid I was contagious, practically threw me out of the pharmacy.

The next 12 hours found me wearing a path in the carpet between the bed and the cool tile floor in the bathroom.  God bless that cold porcelain bowl. I think the last 3 meals found their way northward…everything else went southward faster than a Minnesota snowbird!

I only got about 3-4 hours of sleep and blessedly, I had the next two days off. Tomorrow I go back to work.

The verdict?  Salmonella.  The guilty party?  Sprouts.  That little veggie substitute for lettuce and precisely what I enjoyed with my dinner Sunday and lunch on Monday.  I knew that Salmonella had been reported in alfalfa sprouts, but CLOVER sprouts were supposed to be better.  NOT TRUE. 

And the cruel irony of all this??  In the Tuesday newspaper…front page…and article about the contamination of both clover AND alfalfa sprouts with salmonella.  Apparently the growing process to produce sprouts is the perfect media for growing salmonella AND it cannot be washed out. 

Day late and a dollar short to spare me.

I survived…but I can tell you this ABSOLUTE truth. The sun will burn out before  sprouts of ANY kind will ever pass my lips again.

This pharmacists advice? Dont tempt fate…dont eat sprouts.


Comment by Stacy

January 27, 2011 @ 10:02 am

I contracted Salmonella on a flight on my way to a professional meeting. After the initial “I wanna just die” settled into prolonged diarrhea, I figured it was a virus or something. My physician never took a culture (I asked for one), just saying it was viral gastroenteritis. Long story short: misdiagnosed for 6 months! Ended up becoming chronic, had to have gallbladder removed to get rid of it. Only officially diagnosed upon changing physicians. I knew something was horribly wrong, but as a pharmacist, didn’t follow my instincts. All better now, 4 years later. (They traced mine back to a bad chicken sandwich on plane – I still can’t eat chicken)

Comment by Guzzo

January 30, 2011 @ 2:22 am

Glad you’re okay now.

Comment by KCflacpht

January 31, 2011 @ 4:23 am

I’m so sorry you’ve suffered for being a healthy eater! I hope that by now you’re over it all and able to get past this.

This is why I will only ever eat sprouts that I’ve grown myself. At least then I know where they’ve been, and how they were handled/treated/grown. IF you ever get over this and decided you’d like to try them again- let me know- I can help you grow them safely. And dirt cheap as well!

Comment by cipro

January 31, 2011 @ 7:23 pm

got campylobacter from a chef salad that kept me off work for the first time ever. but the erythromycin given to treat it made me sicker.

Comment by Texas Pharmacy Chica

February 4, 2011 @ 10:57 am

Hope you are feeling better. Miss you in the blogosphere.

Meanwhile……Happy Hospitalist is writing about how cool it is he doesn’t have to see a physician to get his thyroid checked. Which probably means he also writes his own scripts….and that is a gray area ethically, yet in the pharmacy we see it all the time. Pediatricians calling in OCD’s for the mothers fo their patients, ophthalmologists calling in Tamiflu for themselves, or the ones that call in enough controlled substances for their wives to keep them sedated 24/7. Maybe another topic?excellent idea Texas. I actually wrote about a similar topic quite awhile ago. I believe the post was called “I said NO.”. or something to that effecct. If you go back thru the archives, you can find it. I once called the board of medical examiners on this topic and the examiner I spoke with said the practice (in this state) was “legal but discouraged”. WTF.

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