24 June 2012

Medical mayhem

This post is not about journalism. It is not about running.  It is about sunscreen and medical terms.  It all started when I tested some fancy face cream yesterday that vows to make me look younger and to plump my skin!  I tried a blob, smearing it over my middle-aged face and asked Spud whether I looked "younger"?  Of course, he replied with the absolutely correct answer!  However, at $140 for a little golden-coloured pot, I was in no rush to purchase. Besides, it didn't have SPF in it. I have become obsessed with SPF, twenty years too late but better late than never.  This is because I have been breaking out into all types of skin cancers.  Since Christmas, I have had a squamous cell carcinoma, three basal cell carcinomas and an intraepithelial carcinoma excised from my face, neck and back and as I write this, I have another big old itchy, red BCC on my chest awaiting excision upon my plastic surgeon's return from South America.  I can't believe I "have" a plastic surgeon and all he does is cut barnacles off me....  Aaaanyway, I am determined now to only use moisturiser with SPF and if you notice, next time you are in that glossy department store beauty section, hardly any fancy skin creams have SPF!  Similarly, it's just about impossible to buy a stylish pair of sunglasses that is polarised.  And we are living in Australia.  Why IS that?

So, I had thought I was using an SPF moisturiser but after talking to this beauty product saleswoman I went home and examined my tubes. It seems that the tinted SPF-infused "finish" is some kind of base (for what?) and the Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch cream is just plain old waterproof sunscreen. Neither are actually moisturisers (which may explain why I am suddenly seeing so many more lines around my eyes in natural light).  So, off to the pharmacy today and now I think I have finally got the right product.  How can I have made it this far without realising there could be so many different types of goop that you put on your skin?  Maybe I should take a bit more interest?  How many other women have no idea?  The message here is this:  get it right early in life so that you don't turn into one giant skin cancer in your later life.  When quizzed as to the frequency of these eruptions of aberrant DNA, the plastic surgeon (my old boss) uses those two nasty words, "old" and "age".  Groann....  
Regarding illness, my friend Sarah saw this poor sick pooch enjoying an outing at the dog park this week.  Apparently, the pup is very ill and all efforts had been made by its owners to give it some fresh air, despite the dog having an IV infusion and being too sick to walk.  It is highly commendable to me that these people obviously love their doggy so much that they are prepared to go to all this effort for the poor animal.  

This morning I read about "takotsubo syndrome" and "capture myopathy" in a fascinating article about the similarities between animals and humans and their illnesses.  It was in The Australian magazine and you can read the article here (remarkably, it is not - yet - behind a pay wall).  I have always been quite fascinated by the concept of "broken heart" syndrome, having heard stories aplenty of elderly couples dying within days, weeks or even hours of each other. I even thought it was happening to me once, the day my dad died.  We were in the coronary care unit and I thought I had angina.  The nurses were so sweet.  My heart was hurting so badly and I remember thinking how appropriate it was that I was already standing here in the CCU, right next to the resus trolley, which had been decimated by my dad's death.  Then they gave me some antacid and I recovered....  
On a highly funny note, Spud saw this photo on the front page of The Australian yesterday and mistakenly took it to be a picture of Peter Costello, a very conservative politician.  Can you see any similarities?  They'd have to be purely cosmetic because the only other thing I think the pair of them have in common is that they both feature on this blog right now!

No comments: