Sunday, 30 January 2011

Pharmaceutical packaging - how much does it really cost...

As a travelling musician, I have to keep a check on my medical issues. I am going to be perfectly frank and speak about some of the more personal little issues that I have to deal with. Some of you might think that I'm a crank ('burn the witch' comes to mind), I will justify this by saying - I live on the bread line for my art. Sometimes, I'm not within  a 'few' miles of my doctor and have a time sensitive diary, as I travel with other musicians too. 

Cystitis and Urinary tract infections... If you haven't suffered cystitis then you won't know about peeing shards of glass... yes a brutal description - but now you understand me. ALWAYS CHECK WITH YOU DOCTOR OR PHARMACIST FIRST, but any pharmacy will carry branded cystitis relief - and boy is it relief! Six sachets of potassium citrate based powder to be mixed with water... around the £5.00 mark... the store's own brand stuff is about £1 cheaper. Okay, so that's 70-80p a dose. Potassium Citrate aids in neutralising the acid in the urine, thus giving the bladder half a chance to recover. It's not a cure - rest and taking a step back can only do that!

However, Care Medicines have a 200ml bottle of Potassium Citrate Mixture for anything between £1.20 and £3.00. Suggested use is 10ml three times a day. So a bottle holds 20 doses, that's between 6p and 15p a dose. Big difference in your spend, especially if you are prone to suffering cystitis.

What to drink and eat to help: water, cranberry juice and even barley water... chamomile tea, thyme tea (bluh!!!) 

Caffeine based drinks are out! No tea, coffee, cola or stimulant drinks. Rich foods are out - no wine based sauces, curries or spiced food. The kidneys can't take it. Flushing the system through is the name of the game now. Try not to eat too much meat - the digestion of protein can put more stress on the kidneys.Paracetamol helps to ease the discomfort and bring down a temperature.

What happens if you can't shake it off? If you are still suffering after 48 hours, get to a doctor for some antibiotics and keep drinking plenty of water.



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