First day in Kenyan Clinic: wide variety of cases

Rifka’s note.   7/24/11

I worked in the clinic all day. It was slow getting started because the nurse-practitioner was late getting here. At first there were very few people in the queue. but as the day went on it always seemed like there were more people waiting. A few of the older people just came in for a blood pressure check. Many children with cough and runny nose. A young woman with high fever, bloody urine and back pain. I was worried that she had a kidney infection. There was a 3 month old baby with high fever up to 101 and very fast respirations, about 80 a minute. She felt so hot when I first touched her but she was bundled in 2 blankets and 3 sets of clothes. After taking off some of the clothes and blankets she looked better. She was able to nurse and I did not here any bad lungs sounds but I still felt that she had pneumonia. Another women has a deep cut on her leg about 4 inches long. It was stitched up last week and she came in for a wound check. I could see the whole lower leg was swollen. It was very infected and I  had to open up the stitches and irrigate the wound. We gave her antibiotics and pain medication. Everyone has very dry skin here. It is very dusty and dry. It took pictures of some of the people but then the day seems to blur and I can barely remember who was who. We had lunch around 1:30 and I rested until 2:15.  We were able to finish because another tranlator came and I was able to see patients on my own.  Stephen,the nurse practitioner, does things differently than I do in some cases. We tested a few people for malaria but all were negative.
After work I went shopping with Sai, Katheryn and Sydney. We found candy for the children and I bought a huge avocado for 20 cents. I also found the seamstress and want to get an African outfit made. She had great fabric. I bought 4 baskets from Mary, who is cooking for us.
Now to bed. It is 9 pm and everyone goes to bed early because it is dark outside.
Good night.

Author: Global Health Partnerships, USA

I am a sociologist and member of the board of Global Health Partnerships, a US non-profit and certified Kenyan non-governmental organization

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