Shot in the Ass
On my first night in Colan, during my recent trip to Peru, I went down the road to have dinner at the Colan Beach Lodge. It’s the nicest place on the beach, but still nothing fancy. The owner, Mario, is friends with Rosemary, the director–or basically the whole staff–of the Asociacion Humanitaria San Francisco de Asis. Prior to dinner, Rosemary asked me to administer some deworming medication to Mario’s dogs, and Mario asked me to administer some medication–injectable medication–to one of his employees.
Rosemary was worried that I would incur some sort of liability, and at first I was inclined not to do it, but then I realized that it was both unlikely that an adverse event (in other words, a bad side effect or some harm due to the shot) would occur, or even if it did, I doubted that I could even be found to get dragged into whatever South American mess might ensue.
What the employee suffered from, I couldn’t say. The injection was a combination of Vitamin B and a dexamethasone, a corticosteroid. I think that there was some lidocaine in there as well, presumably to dull the pain of the a deep intramuscular injection. It seemed a particularly un-American injection. Not that it would have appeared before a Michele Bachman commision, should she have gotten her wish to carry on the tradition of fellow Midwesterner Joseph McCarthy, but vitamin B injections, as well as corticosteroids for general undiagnosed pain, just aren’t used that much in these parts. However, whenever I’ve been around veterinary practices outside of the United States, it seems that a bit of the yellow (the color of vitamin B) is always added to the fluid therapy when IV fluids are used, and injected otherwise when they aren’t.
So I gave the guy his shot. What the hell, I figured, I’d get a free pisco sour out of it.