Saturday, October 04, 2008

Field Trip To The Ear Doctor: My Nose is Not A Virgin

My ear doctor is a superhero. His name? Dr. Man. Not to be confused with my chiropractor Dr. Mann.

Doctor Chris Man. He was recommended to me by our family physician, Doctor Yong, after I had complained of a difference in my hearing between my left ear and right. Since my mom has a history of hearing problems in her family (see cholestetoma and timpanoplasty) I wanted to make sure everything was working correctly.

Now, when I set up my appointment, the receptionist was very rude.
(Me: My last name is Pimentel.
Receptionist: What?
Me: P as in Panda, I as in Igloo, M as in Man, E as in-
Receptionist: I'm not in kindergarten. Get on with it.)

I called yesterday to confirm and the sub receptionist informed me my appointment had been cancelled. She reinstated me again for today and it was all good.

Today was rainy. I set out in gray skies and horizontal soupy foggy rain, headed to Broadway station and walked the two blocks to their office. The hallways of the medical building were the nondescript white that could have been in Manila, or in Timbuktu (though I wouldn't know about timbuktu) with grey carpeting that smelled from the wet footsteps of the patients walking in.

The receptionist asked for my carecard and did a double take when she saw my name on it. "Raine? Your name is Raine? Like the weather outside! It's Raining!" I smiled soggily.
"You know... There's a Korean popstar named Rain." She said conversationally. "Are you related? Oh, wait you're from the Philippines. Are you familiar with him?"

I had heard of him from my korean and japanese korean friends, so I nodded, shaking off a few droplets. She processed my info and I trudged over to a chair, the same fake-leather seat that I could have sworn my pedia had in his cebu office. Everyone else waiting for their turn was chinese and over 75, by the looks of it. The magazines were outdated (Surprise!) but were all in chinese characters, and had nubile young women in bikinis on the cover. I opened one and found naked people inside! Fantastic. Distract the patients with nudity and save on remodeling.

After an hour wait, I heard my name called and walked in.

Dr. Man is a thin, serious-looking man with glasses and greying straight hair. He makes me sit in the chair and pulls my hair back, then starts prodding my neck, feeling around my throat and under my chin and below my ears. All clear, he tells me, swinging the chair around and poking an instrument up my ears. Itchy itchy ears. All clear there.

I tell him about my bloody nose and snot, and he grabs one of those fiber optic camera thingies and slides maybe 5 inches of the tube up my nose. It burns like hell and my sinuses are not happy. He does the same for the other hole. OW. Yes. Some congestion.

And now for the verdict: I have to do two things.
1. Nose Gargle- with a saline solution. I have to snort and exhale to wash my nose twice a day.
2. Go Jogging. 30 minutes a day or more.

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