Friday, August 20, 2010

Downtown Hepatitis-A Alert

Posted By on August 20, 2010, 11:38 PM

Yikes! Downtown sandwich lovers should beware of a potential hepatitis-A outbreak originating from the Quiznos on Third South between Main and State.


According to Valley Health, if you ate a delicious Quiznos sandwich there on Aug. 6 or 7, you should get an injection right away.

If, on the other hand, you ate a delicious Quiznos sandwich there between July 27 and Aug. 5, don't bother with the injection -- it's useless after 14 days.

For those in the unfortunate latter group, I recommend you start putting your affairs in order, because you're likely to be out of commission for several weeks.

Hepatitis-A is a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad virus.

Not that I claim any medical expertise. But I do speak from experience: A couple decades ago, a few friends and I contracted Hepatitis-A from a Dairy Queen. The D.Q. location no longer exists (it's a coffee shop now) but the memory of those three miserable, bedridden weeks lives on.

When the symptoms first hit me, I thought I had the flu. So my first impulse was to administer whisky with lemon juice, honey and hot water.

Whisky is very effective for the flu but, as I discovered, it's a bad idea for hepatitis: The virus had shut down my liver, which rendered my hot toddy more poisonous than medicinal. Forty-five minutes later, I found myself splayed on the bathroom floor, fervently praying in the sincere belief that I was moments from death. I have never felt worse in my life.

Hepatitis-A makes everything change color: The whites of your eyes turn yellow, and your bodily wastes swap their normal hues. It's pretty alarming, actually.%uFFFD

And, to top it off, even after I got well again, doctor's orders were that I couldn't drink any alcohol for a year. I nearly made it the full 12 months, too -- and that was a harrowing enough experience.

The very worst part, though, was when I learned how the virus is transmitted. You know those notices posted in restaurant lavatories that read "Employees must wash hands"? Apparently, after having a bit of a sit-down, some employees don't always follow that instruction. Then they handle the lettuce that's about to go on your sandwich, and that's how people get hepatitis-A.

But try not to think of it, or you'll never eat at a restaurant again.

Anyway, who knows? Maybe the Quiznos guy actually washed his hands. There have been no reported illnesses so far.

We can only keep our fingers crossed.

Brandon's Big Gay Blog

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