Friday, April 24, 2009

The only thing different, the only thing new

Yesterday was my last dose of Levaquin! Unless symptoms re-emerge, I am considered free of bartonella! This is a good thing. And I have one less pill to take.

I'm continuing on IV glutathione. After four treatments, I waited a few days to evaluate how I was feeling. And I think I might be doing a teensy bit better. I'd say that my average day has seen energy levels about 10 - 15% of pre-Lyme normal levels. But the past few days I think I might be back up to around 20%...which is where I was when I started treatment. Two steps forward, three steps back, one step forward. And on and on.

Anyway, I had my fifth IV today and will have three more over the next two weeks. On May 5, I'm going back in to see Dr. R and discuss my status and where we want to go from here.

In other news, I got my generic Spanish "Bicillin" (penicillin G benzathine) in the mail. In the US, Bicillin LA is only available as a brand name drug, and it comes packaged in individual syringes for injection. The generic stuff I got is a powder, and it comes with a little vial of sterile water. So you mix the powder and water together into suspension. I still need to acquire syringes and needles to make this work. I have a nearly full box of US Bicillin in the fridge, so there's no rush.

But I'd just like to point out the cost difference.

One box Bicillin LA at Costco (the cheapest place we could find) was $511. (Walgreen's was over $600.) The box contains ten syringes, which is ten doses.

I bought ten doses of generic powder from Spain for about $60, including shipping. Syringes and needles might add--let's be generous--another $30.

Absolutely ridiculous.

Of course, now we have to go through the hassle of mixing the suspension, and you've got to use a larger needle and it looks more painful. But $400 per month can buy some pain tolerance.

Once I try the generic I'll be sure to post about my experiences.

And here's a video about what it will look like:

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