Why does this always happen to me?

So tonight I practically died of cortizone. It happened like this:

I have lately developed a rash around my mouth, so tonight over my lunch break I bought a tube of cortizone cream and smeared it on my chin and upper lip, over the rash. A moment or so later I licked my lips, got a foul taste and realized I must have accidentally licked the cortizoned spots. I thought nothing of it, just shrugged it off and went to read my book. But a few minutes later I suddenly developed this godawful cough, the kind of bend-over-and-barf-your-lungs-out kind of cough, and it felt like my throat was swollen up. I drank half a bottle of Mountain Dew but the cough didn’t go away, and when I resumed work it continued. It was really scary to everyone around me. They kept asking me if I was dying.

Half an hour later I decided to call the poison control center about the cortizone. They said the tiny amount I ingested — or any amount, for that matter — shouldn’t cause a cough and I was probably having an allergic reaction. Beyond that they had no advice. I just had to sit there and wait for it to be over.

And, after a couple of hours, the cough did finally go away. My throat still feels really swollen and really sore, though, like I swallowed razor blades. I might go to the doctor about it.

So NOW what am I going to do about that rash?

10 thoughts on “Why does this always happen to me?

  1. Wendy September 1, 2009 / 5:08 pm

    Scary! I hope you are feeling better soon Meaghan!

  2. Kat September 1, 2009 / 6:45 pm

    Hey Meaghan, not to be an alarmist or anything, but if I were you I’d be calling my dr. asap. I cannot believe with your symptoms they told you to wait and see, it sounds to me like you were not just having an allergic reaction, you were dang near in anaphylatic shock. Even if not, it could be a number of things, a reaction to any other meds you may be taking, you could be allergic just to the topical steriod, etc, etc. At least you have written your reaction down, that gives you something to tell the dr. The rash itself might be something altogether. It could be hives, indicating another problem. Promise you will at least call your gp. You never know. My husband and daughter had a real scary incident a few years ago, drank a store brand hydration drink that had a lot of red dye in it and I literally stood there and watched them break out in hives. They were ok after meds, but it was very scary. Sounds like you could use some other medical opinions!

    • Meaghan September 1, 2009 / 6:57 pm

      I went to go see the doctor — in fact, I just got back. He says I can’t be allergic to cortizone, it’s got to be one of the other ingredients in the cream, you know those things always have a zillion different chemicals. He gave me some stuff for my throat and told me not to apply that cream again. (Something I figured out on my own.)

      Given the extremeness of my allergic reaction, as you said, I wonder how bad things would have been if the cream did NOT have the anti-allergy cortizone ingredient!

  3. Kat September 1, 2009 / 7:57 pm

    Thank goodness! At least you are ok, it could have been a lot worse! You really need some good luck in your life.

  4. Janessa September 2, 2009 / 1:50 am

    Oh goodness!
    I hope you feel better very soon Meaghan!
    I’d go to the doctor if I were you, just to be safe.

  5. Becky September 2, 2009 / 3:36 am

    Wow, I’m glad you’re ok!

    Hmm….if I thought my coworker was dying, I think I’d do more than stand around asking her if she was dying. 9-1-1, it’s easy to dial, kids!

    • Cheryl September 2, 2009 / 1:38 pm

      I was thinking the same thing Becky.

      • Meaghan September 2, 2009 / 3:14 pm

        My boss asked me if I wanted to go to the hospital but I said no. My insurance, you see, is basically useless: I have a $2,000 deductible and they won’t pay anything until I reach it. So if I went to the hospital I would be stuck paying the entire bill myself.

        The stupid human resources lady told me to pick that insurance plan. She gave me bad advice. One reasonably healthy 23-year-old is NEVER going to meet that deductible in a year so I’m stuck paying premiums for nothing at all.

  6. Becky September 3, 2009 / 3:25 am

    Aww, man, I see your problem. *sigh* I don’t have health insurance either. My job offers it, but it’s expensive.

  7. Julieann September 3, 2009 / 2:16 pm

    Try Burt’s Bees Re-Q Ointment (in the green tin) for your rash.

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