Posted by: dodgrblu | June 28, 2010

To Sleep, Perchance to…EWWWW!

This magazine was front and center in the magazine rack at the doctor’s office. Now, is that really the message you want to send your patients?

I can’t bring myself to blog the Dodgers today. So, without further “a-doo” (heheheheh), something completely different. But be warned: by the end I’ll bet you’ll wish I’d stuck with the Dodgers.

I saw the orthopedist today. I sincerely hope there’s a special place in hell for the person who put an orthopedist’s office on the third floor of the building.

The good news: I have an Aircast (aka, a boot), not a “real” cast. I quickly discovered “Aircast” is a misnomer: it weighs about 50 pounds. The bad news is I may be in it for two months—six weeks if I’m lucky—and no weight bearing at all in that time (except when the doctor wants me to bear weight on it).  I have to go back Friday to get the results of the CAT scan which I got today, and do some kind of X-Ray that involves putting weight on my foot. (The alternative to the X-ray where I put weight on my foot is to be knocked out to do it. Heck, I’d probably let an elephant tap dance on my foot if the alternative is an IV.)

I left the orthopedist’s office with two prescriptions. One is for Percocet. You’d think I’d be more excited, but I find Percocet (and it’s wimpier cousin Vicodin) overrated. People always talk about how Percocet and Vicodin are such great drugs, making your head all floaty and stuff. I wish it did that for me: assistance in escaping from reality would be most welcome right about now. Instead I find Percocet is merely adequate to kill the pain: if I take two at a time, and if I don’t go too much more than six hours between doses. (For the record, it’s also difficult for me to get drunk, even when I want to. What can I say? I’m an expensive date.) Percocet/Vicodin don’t even make me sleepy. Instead, they have the opposite effect—they wire me so that I can’t sleep.

Which brings me to the other prescription: Ambien. Oh, Ambien, your reputation precedes you! The Ambien Midnight Munchies gained fame a few years back—binge-eating in the middle of the night with no memory of it in the morning. (Gives new meaning to  “a full night’s sleep.”) Then there are the tales of sleeping through sex: that’s even in the official Ambien prescribing information. (But haven’t most women done that at one time or other?)

So, I’m not that enthusiastic about taking Ambien. But I may change my mind when I’m wide awake and can’t get back to sleep at 2:30 in the morning (again). So, we filled the prescription. The pharmacist emphasized going to bed immediately after taking it because it causes amnesia. (She didn’t say it may cause amnesia, she stated it as a fact.) And she clarified that it’s not amnesia in the sense that you’ll forget about having a broken foot (again: a good thing), but in the sense you’ll forget what you’ve already done before going to bed. (“And how did you overdose on Ambien?”) Well, if it doesn’t actually make you sleep, maybe you’ll forget you didn’t.

So, browsing the literature that comes with Ambien  the first item under “COMMON side effects” caught my eye:  Diarrhea. Now, it is just me, or is that a highly undesirable side effect for a sleeping pill? I can just see it: you wake up in the morning with no memory of the night before, and you’re covered in bright orange Cheetos crumbs and CRAP. Well, that must have been quite a party last night. If only you could remember it! Think I can’t make that already pretty picture worse? Instead of Cheetos, try a bag of fat-free potato chips made with Olestra! (Okay, Procter and Gamble doesn’t actually use Olestra in food products any more. It’s now marketed as an industrial lubricant and paint additive. Mmm! Mmm! Good!)

See? I warned you that by the end you’d be wishing I’d stuck with the Dodgers.


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