As of Monday, I am the proud owner of a twenty tablet bottle of doxycycline monohydrate. It’s finally come to this-antibiotics. For decades it has been a source of pride that I have had no truck with antibiotics since 1958 when the doctor stuck me in the gluteus with penicillin as a defense against something bad happening with a kidney.
Somewhere along the last month, I picked up a cough combined with a strong desire spend my days in bed. Habitually, I power through physical down days with lots of sleep and lots of water. Since I am sharing digs with a family member of fragile health, I took myself off to the doctor. Two hours and one chest x-ray later the medical take on my condition was bacterial pneumonia in the lower left lobe. Home I went armed with instructions to rest and a bottle of antibiotic.
This doxycycline monohydrate stuff is primarily used to treat malaria. It’s part time job is beating up on bacteria in general. Should I plan a trip to the tropics to achieve maximum benefit from the fifteen dollars I paid for it? The bottle came with three sheets of potential side effects, including discoloration of my teeth. Is the cure going to be worse than the malady? I am dubious; nevertheless, I have committed myself to ten days of antibiotics.
Will this be the first step that I take on that slippery slope down to days of lining my bathroom shelf with medications?