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Published: August 8th 2014
Today I went to Kumi University in Nyero with Dr Stephen. He works at the University clinic on Mondays and Fridays because they are so busy those days and at Freda Carr Hospital the rest of the week.
I met him at his house in Nyero in the morning and then we walked to the university. The university clinic sees all people from around the town not just people at the university. The clinic was very nicely set up and more updated than Freda Carr or the rest of the places we have been at. We were very busy. The clinic doesn't see much malaria so it was really interesting seeing the variety of patients.
One man came in who was in congestive cardiac failure. He had multiple problems. He was in his 30s or 40s. He was skin and bones and so you could actually see his heart beat through his intercostal spaces. His heart was severely enlarged as well. We could tell just by looking at it beating through his ribs that there was a problem. Not only was his heart severely enlarged but as we listened we could hear a heart murmur. Amongst that
he probably had some kind of viral infection due to his CBC counts, stomach pain, severe hypertension, and pitting edema or oedema as they call it here.
Side note: They use British English spellings for words instead of America English. They were colonized by Britain and so their medicine comes from their as well. They add an extra O or A onto vowels. Oedema, Anaemic, paediatrics, gynaecological, oesophagus ... So it is called GORD instead of GERD here. I found that quite amusing.
Another patient we saw was a little boy who was 6. He was severely malnourished. At the age of 6 he weighed 11 kg which is around 24 lbs. He was diagnosed "Failure to Thrive". We spent a great deal of time with this patient and his father. The father and son had been to the doctors multiple times in the past couple years for this little boy but they couldn't figure out what was causing the malnourishment. Africa has so many things that could cause this... HIV, malaria, hepatitis, worms, etc He had been counseled on food groups, how much he needed to eat, etc. but the boy still wasn't getting the
nutrition he needed. He was so malnourished that his skin was shedding and losing pigment. 😞
One of the last patients we saw had a severe case of shingles. They were everywhere. She had waited awhile to come in and I think this was the reason they said they had spread so intensely. They covered her face, neck and chest. You could tell how much pain she was in because when she would walk around she wouldn't bend her joints. It looked so painful.
After clinic, I went back to Nyero and hungout for a bit with Stephen at his home. It's a room that he rents behind a shop. He is a clinical officer which is three years of school here and somewhat equivalent to a P.A. in the states. He is applying right now for medical school though and will find out the week of the 21st if he gets accepted (which is another 5 years). This is a common process in Uganda. First Medical Officer, then Medical School. Regardless I got to interact with some of his neighbors which lead to interesting topics like politics and religion. This seems to be pretty common
here... Religion definitely is discussed quite often. Ugandans are very passionate about their religions. After the normal introductions and niceties, the next question is what is your Religion. Most people here are Catholic, Protestant or Muslim.... But mostly Christian of some sort.
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