Minor Head Injury

Trip Start May 18, 2010
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12
17
Trip End Jul 10, 2010


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Where I stayed
Usa River

Flag of Tanzania  ,
Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Since the Germans arrived I can no longer shower at the hospital (it was freezing cold anyway), so last night I had my first bucket shower. It actually was not so bad (the warm water was a nice change of pace!), except for the part where I had to go to the hospital afterward.

What happened was this: I was leaning over the bucket and washing my hair, and when I stood up I hit the back of my head REALLY HARD on the faucet. Ouch!! Then I started bleeding. A lot. However, it had been so long since I'd had a hot shower, I wasn't going to let a little thing like profuse blood loss stop me. Afterward told my host father about it, but by that point most of the bleeding had stopped, so I just went to bed. This morning I woke up and was feeling rather dizzy, so when I went to work I asked one of the doctors what I should do. He recommended shaving that part of my head and cleaning it thoroughly with iodine, and then getting a tetanus shot. I declined the head-shaving but thought it prudent to get a tetanus shot, since I don't remember the last time I had one; either before Egypt or before Asia. Several years ago, at any rate.

So I called Jason, who is the guy in charge, and told him what happened and he took me to the nice new hospital in Arusha... where they were all out of the vaccine. I an not sure how one of the nicest, newest hospitals in Tanzania runs out of a common vaccine, but somehow it did. So we had to go all the way across town, to another hospital. This one was not so nice and new. It looked like what one might imagine a mental hospital in the 50s looking like, all white and sterile and well-manicured. Maybe it was originally a mental hospital, I really don't know. They sent us over to this little building, which was probably where they did lobotomies back in those days, to get the shot. I have never so feared for my life before getting a shot.

However, the needle was sterile, I did not die, and now I have to get a second dose when I go home.

Stupid bucket shower.
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