Saturday, September 23, 2017

An unending fistula infection

In the middle of August, I contracted an infection in my fistula. I have had a few in the past. All of them however would clear with a few days of antibiotics, typically Amoxyclav. This time however, I have been on a variety of antibiotics for the last almost six weeks and though the infection has reduced, it has not gone completely. There is a still a persistent, small amount of discharge of blood from the infected site. I am now on what they call, a maintenance dose of an antibiotic.

I use buttonhole needles and the buttonhole technique has been associated with an increased risk of infection. Earlier I used to have an infection almost every year. But ever since I have followed the double prep method of cannulation, I have managed to keep infections at bay. WEhn the infection came however, it made up for all the missed instances.

If you asked me to move away from buttonhole to the regular, sharp method of cannulation, I would refuse. The advantages of buttonholing for me are far too great to give it up, at least for now. The reduced pain, the ability to avoid aneurysms, the zero risk of cross punctures - all make buttonholing a risk worth taking.

The downside of an infected fistula is that you cannot shower freely as you need to protect the infected site from water. And of course, swimming is on hold! That’s something I miss a lot. Now that winter will set in soon in Hyderabad, I am not sure how long I will be away from swimming.

For now though, all I am hoping is for the infection to go away completely. I am not really sure what side effects such a long duration of antibiotics could  cause.


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