- Mamaw and Papaw’s Wedding Day 1916 Livingston KY
The world of Hepatitis C treatment is more than taking drugs as scheduled and hoping for virus death. The bigger part is keeping your body, mind and soul with you.
- Diarrhea? Water and Lomotil I guess, that was never my problem
- Nausea? Water, saltines and Phenergan
- Constipation? Water and stool softener. Even the name is too gross. Kinda like mud-butt
- Mouth Sores? Water then swish and spit Mylanta. Happy to spit
- Food taste like pennies? Water and floss, floss, floss, brush, brush, brush. Still doesn’t help
- Flu symptoms for six months? Water then alternate Tylenol and Advil for six months. Exercise: yeah, right
- Rash? Benadryl oral and topical. Maybe hydrocortisone/vaseline
- Insomnia? Ambien if you are lucky. Benadryl if you are unlucky, it adds to constipation and taste of pennies. Don’t drink water before bed
- Depression? Water and SSRIs/SNRIs/antipsychotics/and on-and-on in couplets
- Too tired to work? Adderall if the shaking won’t vibrate your loose screws
- Can’t go on? Cry really hard, take Advil, drink water and go on.
My Mamaw had eleven children in Eastern Kentucky starting in 1917. There was no doctor, drug store or money. She lost two baby boys, one to the Spanish Flu. When she came out of delirium, baby Bentley was already buried.
If an artery spurted, she applied coal soot. Got a burn? First well water (cold) then let egg white dry on burn or apply a slice of onion. Step on a nail? Clean and soak with turpentine. Pneumonia? Inhale kerosene (dosing was tough) through a moist cloth and put a mustard plaster on your chest. It will kill you or cure you. I never witnessed this one. Croup? Make a sheet tent over the steam kettle, put in Vick’s and then hold the child under the tent. If that treatment doesn’t work, sugar with a drop of kerosene. Give a few drops of whiskey if you got it.
Here’s what applied to us grandkids. Pinworms? Check rectum at night with a flashlight then give all the kids a stinky medicine that I think had tobacco in it. Earache? Warm up pee in a teaspoon a little more than body temp and pour it in your ear. Stick in a plug of quilting. I would hide in the cedar closet as long as I could before telling Mamaw. I made her use my pee. Here is the thing: it worked. Pee is sterile upon leaving the urinary tract. Of course I knew nothing of a “clean catch”. Collection was easier when we got an indoor bathroom. You figure it out. When I checked the internet for possible mechanisms of action (MOA) of the pee, there was a claim that urine is an antifungal. Of course on the internet you can probably find a claim that golf balls extract is good for an earache too. I made that up.
What would Mamaw do about Hepatitis C treatment management? Probably just rock me and say “Doggone it. It’ll get better.” I have her rocker in my house. It sure is smaller than I remember. Anyway, it doesn’t really work without her.