They call me a globetrotter, but to walk the world I must have healthy feet.
So what should I do when my feet are in less than pristine condition?
I still travel, much to the dismay of most level headed people.
In October, after having sprained my left foot twice, I traveled to the Frankfurt Book Fair in Germany with a partially blue foot. The doctor said I could go as long as I stayed off of the cobble stoned streets and wore a ankle sleeve. Blisters and a wort developed on my right foot.
Two months later, I found myself in Doha, Qatar for the Doha International Book Fair and was in so much pain because of my right foot that I had to get surgery. It was too difficult to locate a podiatrist to remove the plantar wort, so I consulted with a US trained dermatologist. After 10 or 15 minutes, my 5 or 7mm wort and corn were removed. Smoke cam out of my foot as the doctor was cauterizing my foot.
“Doctor, may I walk now?” I asked.
“Yes, you may. If it hurts, just take a pain killer.”
I abhor medicines and only take them when medically necessary. I felt as though I were floating after the surgery. A few hours later, the anesthesia wore off and I could feel the wound on the ball of my foot. Despite the pain, I refrained from popping pills.
Upon returning to the US, I immediately visited the podiatrist who was shocked that I could walk with such a hole in my foot. She told me to cease walking as much as possible and use crutches. She also gave me a post-surgical show to wear. It looked like a sandal with a piece of foam inside with a hole for where my wound was. The dermatologist didn’t realize the dangers of walking on a wound. I halted my recovery process by walking.
On Monday, I went to the acupuncturist about my feet and she prescribed me some orange herbs to boil for a foot bath. She neglected to tell me that the foot bath would turn my feet orange! Even after soaking my feet in normal warm water twice, I still have partially orange feet.
None of these omissions by the doctors were due to a language barrier. They all spoke English. As much as I love experimenting internationally, I think my foreign medical practices need to be curbed or I need to ask doctors to tell me all the possible side effects and warnings related to procedures and medicines. I thought that was common practice in the US, but perhaps in other medical cultures, it’s not.