After a two-week rigmarole, a long-awaited check finally arrived and, thanks to an error on the part of my bank (the details are too long and vexing, so I'll leave them out), it took forever to clear. That was problematic because the error returned the check to the issuer, stripping my account bare and leaving me with a negative balance at a time when I was taking care of medical and dental issues out of pocket. Before my funds were mistakenly yanked, I went to the local urgent care facility and had them look at a nasty skin condition that had ravaged my fingers, wrists, and the back of my right calf since early June. (When one is poor, one waits until one can pay for medical care.) The examination determined that the condition was apparently stress-related eczema, for which I was assigned a five day regimen of the steroid prednisone. It made me not able to sleep (which, when coupled with my pre-existing insomnia, was beyond annoying), made me wired and buzzy, and spurred me to walk the streets of my neighborhood at 4am to work off the surplus energy. After a period of four days, the results were spectacular and all seemed fine, so my doctor took me off the prednisone and recommended a followup with a dermatologist.
Then the check kerfluffle happened and the nerve-wracking waiting game began.
During the two-week ordeal, my stress-related eczema came back with a vengeance, causing the skin on my hands and wrists to peel off on raw sheets, making my hands look like I was turning into goddamned Ben Grimm. For example:
And while I was able to deal with the dryness and simultaneous rawness/weeping via constant moisturizing and changing bandages, the itching and tenderness was sheer torture. Due to a block being put on my account — with the bank freely admitting that the error was theirs but there was naught they could do until the redeposited check fully cleared — I had to put actual medical treatment of the ailment on hold for the aforementioned two weeks, during which time I also could not pay for my regular monthly meds, so I missed about four days of that regimen. NOT good.
Anyway, things have been sorted as of Wednesday afternoon. I got my regular meds and I saw the doctor at the urgent care, who took one look at my hands and tripled the dose of prednisone, and also prescribed a strong antibiotic. Here's what my hands looked like moments before I walked into the urgent care. I purposely did not moisturize so the doctor could see with utmost clarity the severity of the condition:
Oh, and the doctor's visit and prescriptions were paid for sans insurance.
Come on, Obamacare!!!