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TlxcalaClaudia

Sep 26, 2009, 7:17 AM

Post #26 of 42 (4207 views)

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Re: [Brigitte Ordoquy] My advice: Check for parasites

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I bet the teas do help! Do folks in your area do a natural colon cleanse too? Feli mentioned one, but I can't remember the name and not sure I'd do it until after checking out all ingredients.

What is really interesting to me Brigitte is that the Dr's there in Mexico are quicker to note parasites. So if you do get parasites/worms there... best to get them treated there. Well faster anyhow. After months of testing for my various symptoms, I asked for a parasite test. My (wonderful) Dr here wrote the lab script out for me, but doubted it could be that..."no one gets that." He called me in the day my results came in and offered a personal apology for not believing me. "Wow, you must have gotten them in Mexico" he said. He has been fascinated by my case...and I give him a lot of credit for listening to me and letting me get checked for what I suspected.


yucatandreamer


Sep 26, 2009, 11:58 AM

Post #27 of 42 (4179 views)

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Re: [TlxcalaClaudia] My advice: Check for parasites

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First I think this is a very interesting conversation and a valuable one. Someone mentioned that since it concerned feces perhaps it was not suitable for polite company. My response is that everybody poops! Here in Merida and in the Yucatan and also Chiapas, the most common bathroom is aire libre. This causes feces to dry and blow around here in Yucatan and in Chiapas to wash toward the streams. I contracted a feces born parasite in Chiapas even though I regularly soak my food in iodine solution. The parasite encapsulates itself in order to spread itself. It lodged in fresh berries which I washed and mostly cooked in cobblers. I was treated successfully for this but still had H. Pylori. I have no idea how long I had that or where I picked it up.

I think that most of us who come here are used to flushing toilets and easily accessible running water. We find it unimmiginable that our neighbor may be throwing his night soil into his patio or washing his hands repeatably in a bucket. Even in a city of almost a million and in an area known for its expat population, this is what one neighbor does. I agree that a parasite test should be done yearly and any other time things aren't right. I speak from experience. I spent almost a year wondering if I had some sort of cancer or allergy and fearing the worst. I have now been treated for the H pylori and will not wait next time. Due to local sanitary conditions, I am sure there will be a next time. When I really think about it, I am amazed that there is not full fledged epidemics.


Hound Dog

Sep 26, 2009, 2:02 PM

Post #28 of 42 (4161 views)

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Re: [yucatandreamer] My advice: Check for parasites

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I hope for our sake we do not get the Helicoacteria it is one nasty treatment. My doctor told me I probably had it for a long time but I could have gotten it in Chiapas or Oaxaca. In the village where I stay part of the village goes to a comon latrine in the mountain and some of the villages in Chiapas do not have bathrooms. They is a big effort right now in Chiapas to get a cement floor for everyone who has dirt floors.
It is amazing people are as clean as they are considering their living conditions.
You are right if you live in the poorer States you will get sick eventually. A couple of years ago half of the town in San Cristobal has typhoid thanks to some bottle water that was contaminated. It is a constant battle to get clean water and when the wind blows I would hate to see what is in the air. You probably could make an interesting documentary about it.

The worst things you can eat in Chiapas are the berries. Strawberries are famous for amibaes , the blackberries are a little better but sometimes it is difficult to get rid off the bugs. The problems is that the berries there are so good and beautiful looking that I eat them several times a week. No wonder we get sick everytime we are there.

Yes the Mayas have all kinds of teas that do all kinds of things. Last year a woman made bougainvilla tea for my cold. I am not sure if it worked or not but it did not hurt it.
The bacteria you have or had can give you cancer and or ulcers so no one should fool around., if you have the symptoms get an endoscopy and get rid off them. I have to have surgery of the oesophagus and the surgeon will not operate until I have another endoscopy to make sure the bacteries are gone.


Hound Dog

Sep 27, 2009, 5:34 AM

Post #29 of 42 (4106 views)

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Re: [Hound Dog] My advice: Check for parasites

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That previous message under my name was written by my darlin wife, not I but she made some important points to which I will add the facts that I have had a serious and most unpleasant bout with Typhoid in Mexico (we moved here in 2001) and have been infected with salmonella at least three times each time without any obvious symptoms. The salmonella infections were revealed by annaul (at least) blood and other tests. I should also point out that we always disinfect all vegetables and fruit we consume and only drink bottled "purified" water which I believe to be a loosely applied term in both Chiapas and Jalisco.

When we were driving back to Lake Chapala through Oaxaca a couple of years ago, we made an emergency stop because of, among other things, intestinal illness, in the small city of Juchitan, Oaxaca on the Isthmus of Tehuantepec and the doctor at the clinic we visited exclaimed when he heard we lived in San Cristóbal de Las Casa, "Well, no wonder you are sick". This doctor is a native of Juchitan and has lived there all his life and Juchitan is maybe a couple of hours drive from the Chiapas state line and a neat little city but not necessarily noted for its cleanliness.


Carron

Sep 27, 2009, 8:18 AM

Post #30 of 42 (4081 views)

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Re: [TlxcalaClaudia] My advice: Check for parasites

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I was born and raised in New Orleans, about as tropical as you can get in the US. When I had my tonsils removed in 1950, at the age of 6, I didn't recover from the operation and had to stay in the hospital for lengthy tests. Finally an elderly pediatrician checked me out and she advised my mother to take me home immediately because the hospital would never be able to diagnose my illness.

She then referred me to a specialist in tropical diseases, Dr. D'Antoni. He was of the very wealthy family that controlled United Fruit company at the time and he had gone into his specialty primarily to keep their workers healthy on their vast banana plantations in Central America. He diagnosed me as having "amoebic dysentery", although as someone else on this thread mentioned there didn't seem to be any dysentery that I was ever aware of. I had severe liver damage, yellow skin and eyes, dramatic loss of weight, lethargy, flirted with comas, etc. I was bedridden for many months. He thought I had probably contracted it from unwashed lettuce that had been picked by migrant workers. ?Quien sabe?


Brigitte Ordoquy

Sep 27, 2009, 8:34 AM

Post #31 of 42 (4071 views)

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Re: [Carron] My advice: Check for parasites

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The lettuce did not have to be contaminated migrant workers. The field workers probably did not have portable potties in those days and if they did they probably were paid by weight rather than by hour so they did not want to waiste time going away from their work.
We had to battle our field help in the vineyard to use the portable loos. It was a real battle, we had to fine them if they did not use them and would give them a break just for that purpose but 50 years ago there was no such thing.

I remember my tonsils being removed to. It was done in Paris in the 50' on the kitchen table. It was a white table with green linoleum cover and an aluminum border. I remember being afraid of the doctor with his light on his forehead shining on me and the mask they made me breath in, I fought them all the way. Sanitation then was not what it is today.


Peter


Sep 27, 2009, 8:35 AM

Post #32 of 42 (4070 views)

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Re: [Carron] My advice: Check for parasites

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In the three-and-a-half years I have lived in Mexico full-time, Morelia, I have had three bouts with stomach infections, at least that is what a doctor called it on one occasion. The first time the symptoms were fatigue and listlessness and was diagnosed as throat infection. The next time it included some stomach pains so suggested stomach infection. Both times it was treated with Cipro. The third time, all instances of this were about a year apart, I recognized the fatigue early and self-medicated.

Only the second time a doctor suggested blood tests, but as I was in Lázaro Cárdenes for a couple of weeks and leaving the next day I did not have the tests done. No one here, doctors or neighbors, have suggested parasites as I guess just is not a common problem in these parts. But this thread has wisely suggested that one should consider such cautions.

I think I will get the blood tests done in the future. Not a bad idea even if it proves negative.


Axixic


Sep 27, 2009, 8:45 AM

Post #33 of 42 (4068 views)

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Re: [Carron] My advice: Check for parasites

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I bet there are a lot of illnesses up North that are caused by parasites that are never diagnosed. I've never been checked for parasites up North and yet I had traveled to Mexico and South America often. I wonder how many people who are tired all the time and frequently ill really have parasites causing their long term health problems.


Peter


Sep 27, 2009, 11:11 AM

Post #34 of 42 (4032 views)

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Re: [Hound Dog] My advice: Check for parasites

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... have been infected with salmonella at least three times each time without any obvious symptoms. The salmonella infections were revealed by annaul (at least) blood and other tests. ...


I guess that is understandable. The precautions here are much more lax than in the US, especially for chicken.

Did you wear a haz-mat suit when preparing your fowl? Also, make sure you wash the car you brought it home from the store in.


Hound Dog

Sep 27, 2009, 12:10 PM

Post #35 of 42 (4017 views)

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Re: [Peter] My advice: Check for parasites

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 I guess that is understandable. The precautions here are much more lax than in the US, especially for chicken.

Did you wear a haz-mat suit when preparing your fowl? Also, make sure you wash the car you brought it home from the store in.


Very amusing, Peter but I don´t laugh so much at these matters as I used to. Not after having lived here for the better part of a decade. We eat a lot of chicken in Mexico as the beef and pork are so often lean, dry and relatively tasteless and the seafood supply is not to be trusted in the highlands generally speaking but maybe that is not such a good idea. We just remodeled out kitchen and one thing we did was to install a new kitchen faucet that allows us to turn on and off the kitchen sink water with the back of our hands.

I was buying purified water in Ajijic from a company that my doctor told me never to buy purified water from and in Chiapas I made a point of buying "purified" water from a world famous soft drink company under the theory that they would not dare sell impure water since their soft drink sales are huge in Latin America. Turns out they sold impure bottled water ön at least one occasion and made many locals sick. It seems to me the best thing to do is stick to wine and beer but then your liver goes. DAMN!


Maybe I should stop kissing my dogs on the lips.

Always remember. If you eat at some portable street taco stand whether a "roach coach" or tent where you cannot wash your hands before eating, where do you think the chef defecates and then washes his/her hands before handling your meal, Tonto? And that goes whether you are in Chiapas or L.A. False bravado can render you lifeless and then in front of whom are you goi8ng to brag? God and Lucifer already understand you very well.


(This post was edited by Hound Dog on Sep 27, 2009, 12:15 PM)


Papirex


Sep 27, 2009, 2:02 PM

Post #36 of 42 (3990 views)

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Re: [Hound Dog] My advice: Check for parasites

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Bob, your post reminded me of a forum that used to be on Mexconnect 8 or 10 years ago. It was titled “You know you are in México when.” One of the postings was “You know you are in México when most of the restaurants you eat at have a tarp for a roof.”


I have never had any serious problems here, but I have never eaten anything except a mango one time from a street stall or cart either. My ladies are Mexicanas and they know how to purify food , weather or not it looks like it needs it, at home.


If you takes chances here, or anywhere, you will probably be sorry. Of course, that can happen in any country, but it is more of a concern here.


I didn't know I could get sick from kissing my dogs.


Rex
"The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved" - Victor Hugo


TIO GREENGLEE


Sep 27, 2009, 4:42 PM

Post #37 of 42 (3963 views)

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Re: [TlxcalaClaudia] My advice: Check for parasites

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This reminds me of the time I contracted dengue while living here in Chiapas. I went to the Phoenix to see my mother and got very sick. The doctors there didn't believe me and wouldn't treat me with antibiotics. Later, when the blood test came back positive, they absolutely freaked out because I swam in the community pool (mosquitoes) after I felt better. They panicked the community and tried to quarantine me. They backed off after I threatened to sue them for not treating me in the first place.

Here in Chiapas, hookworms are common and will kill your pets. The symptoms in humans are brown spots on the feet (from walking barefoot). I have to take Oxxal and treat my dogs and cats a couple of times a year for this.


Peter


Sep 28, 2009, 7:28 AM

Post #38 of 42 (3912 views)

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Re: [Hound Dog] My advice: Check for parasites

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Very amusing, Peter but I don´t laugh so much at these matters as I used to.


Frankly I find the whole matter a bit frightening especially after reading this thread. But what can we do beyond being aware of the situation and taking every reasonable precaution?

The US makes a big deal over salmonella safety with chicken, less so with other meats. Thousands of plucked and gutted chickens are washed together in huge vats, not every speck of fecal matter gets removed and the bacteria spreads amongst them in those large processing plants as they are being readied for shipping. Here in Mexico you can buy a similarly prepared product or in the tianguis you can select your live bird and have it butchered while you wait. This is probably better but your poultry guy has the same cleanliness restraints as at the taco stand, or worse.

We drink bottled water hoping it is sufficiently purified but draw the line in a reasonable place as to just when we start to rely on municipal water. Some of us will use bottled water to brush our teeth but cook a pot of beans in tap water because the heat will kill off the bad guys. But what water does one use to wash fruit and vegetables? And to bathe with? We just do the best we can and acknowlege that life is a dangerous affair. We rely on our general health and good spirits to ward off the little evil creatures that are there to trip us up. We hope that being well-rested, well-fed, and well-intentioned will buy us more care-free time of good health until our ultimate hour. Until that moment we just do the best we can.

I absolutely agree with you about the water faucets that can be maneuvered with the wrist or back of the hand. I use that type exclusively and will change out the other even in my rented homes. Not only are they more sanitary and germ-free but I hate to get my hands sticky using a dirty knob.



judithnpups


Sep 28, 2009, 12:41 PM

Post #39 of 42 (3867 views)

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Re: [judithnpups] My advice: Check for parasites

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Vermox Plus treats both worms and amoebas. Two pills, one dose.
Judith in the DF (formerly in Morelia)


bournemouth

Sep 28, 2009, 12:48 PM

Post #40 of 42 (3862 views)

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Re: [judithnpups] My advice: Check for parasites

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That's good to know - thanks Judith.


Gringal

Sep 28, 2009, 1:40 PM

Post #41 of 42 (3845 views)

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Re: [Peter] My advice: Check for parasites

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Well, one more tale of woe can't hurt.

I've had it all, from the salmonella to the amoebas during my time in Mexico. Vermox isn't a bad idea, but if the growling and cramping persists, it's definitely time to get that little plastic sample bottle, put the right stuff in it and have it lab tested. The latest thing I have is a real PITA. Some kind of thing that lives in your gut but when they're too many of them, it's out of balance and shows up as en elevated Ph level. You will get tired of listening to your gut growl and getting the cramps. At that point, off to the doc.

Now, it's expensive (one pill for $308pesos; the other for $550 for a two weeks' supply) and then, just for greater joy, there's the gluten free diet. I understand the bugs like the gluten. They get big and strong on your bagel. This means, for the uninitiated, no pasta, no bagels, no pizza, no flour. Yuck. Getting mightly sick of corn tortillas.

So, I agree that self-diagnosis isn't the best way to go. They have more bugs here than we have guesses.

Other than that..............Viva Mexico.


TlxcalaClaudia

Sep 28, 2009, 4:41 PM

Post #42 of 42 (3813 views)

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Re: [Gringal] My advice: Check for parasites

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Gringal - Each tale I hear, the more I wonder why haven't we talked of this before?

I hesitated to post too...glad we all did. This is valuable info. I had no idea some have gotten so sick. I thought my case was bad. Ha...it can be worse.
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