Paracetamol … the Dutch Wonder Drug.

Since I arrived, I've heard a lot of funny stories about people who go to the doctor's here and are merely told to go home, take 2 paracetamol and rest.  In fact, I'm pretty sure that if you turned up with bubonic plague, or an axe in your head, you'd be told to take 2 paracetamol and come back if it's not better.

Recently my poor husband went to basketball training and dislocated his index finger by catching a rogue ball.  I remember vaguely waking up at around 11pm with him standing by the bed, sporting a plaster cast and telling me 'It's not as bad as it looks …'  Of course it's not.  IT'S A PLASTER CAST! Slightly a little bit of overkill once I got the story out of him, but still enough to give you that small moment of panic…

Which brings me to last night's story.

My lack of coordination is not news.  I've managed to fall over my own feet so many times I now get up, take a bow and laugh.  So it should be no surprise to you all that I managed to slip on my stairs (there's a reason the Dutch word for staircase is "trap") but regain my balance.  I don't recall doing anything to my foot, but I did notice it was a little uncomfortable when wandering back upstairs to bed.

My feet aren't the prettiest to start with – I'll freely admit that – but when you have to call in your husband to come look because you're not sure of exactly how deformed they are I admit they're probably never going to be modelling matierial.  With my foot rapidly swelling and discolouring, he decided I should probably head into the hospital with him and get it checked.

Have I mentioned how hard it is to hobble/hop/limp in snow?  That's right, it started snowing as we left the house, so I'm trying to get to the car without falling on my arse or causing myself more damage.  By the time we reached the hospital, the snow is bucketing down.

Once inside, it was your standard questions about where you live, health insurance etc.  With full marks to the hospital, I was in and out in under half an hour.  However, it was confirmed I had broken my little toe.  (You don't realise how much you use that little guy until you break it, really!).  There wasn't a lot that can be done, but I was sent home strapped, told to rest, and that if I needed to use painkillers, I could take 2 paracetamol.

That's right, Paracetamol.

11 thoughts on “Paracetamol … the Dutch Wonder Drug.”

  1. A plaster cast for a dislocated finger? That does sound a bit much. 😛

    Your ordeal sounds so painful! Complete with snow because it wasn’t problematic enough already. I’ve never broken a bone (knock wood etc.) but that sounds like one of the most painful to break since there isn’t a lot that can be done and you just have to take 2 paracetamol (apparently). 😛 Is the paracetamol working for you?

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    1. To be honest, the paracetamol knocks a tiny edge off the pain so I usually struggle through the day without, and then to go to bed I take some just to ease it slightly.

      I thought a plaster cast for the finger was overkill as well. But hey, it’s Holland 😉

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  2. Paracetamol

    Of course! It’s the miracle wonder drug.

    When my little toe was infected and blown up to the size of my big toe, the doc actually told me with a straight face that “Paracetamol is actually quite good for this type of infection.” Ah, no. Antibiotics and a scalpel is actually quite good for this type of infection!

    Here’s my experience: http://inburgeringadventure.blogspot.nl/2011/05/take-paracetamol-and-come-back-in-week.html

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  3. I broke my little finger when I worked at Woolies by having someone slam a heavy wooden drawer on it. My GP strapped it to the next one with medical tape and that was it. I didn’t even get told to have paracetamol. A week later it was no better so I went back and the GP told me to go up to the hospital and have it x-rayed. At the hospital they laughed at me, told me they didn’t x-ray fingers, strapped it to the next finger with medical tape and sent me home. Still no paracetamol.

    After I had my top surgery in San Francisco, the surgeon gave me a prescription for Percocet which is oxycodone (morphine-based) and paracetamol so it’s pretty strong and it worked really well. When I got back to the UK and I still needed painkillers, I was given co-codamol which did absolutely nothing. I don’t know what it would take here to be given proper decent strength painkillers, apparently not major surgery!

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