Friday, May 2, 2008
Yesterday I stopped by the CVS Minute Clinic to get a refill on some allergy meds. Because they have to do an exam and verify that I do, in fact, have allergies, I sat still while the nurse practitioner stuffed her tiny light pointer up my nose and in my ears. "Yup," she said, "you need a refill" and sent me on my merry way back to the pharmacy. It was an uneventful visit, my allergies aren't that bad so nothing more needed to be said.
On the way home I was looking at the paperwork and noticed it said "DIAGNOSIS: EYES: ABNORMAL. PRESENCE OF ALLERGIC SHINERS." Eyes? I thought she only looked at my nose & ears. WTF are "allergic shiners" and why do I have this? Why didn't she mention it?
It sounds horrible on two counts, first that my eyes are abnormal (no, not just abnormal but screaming capital-letters ABNORMAL) but then there was that mysterious medical diagnosis I'd never heard of before in my premed studies: ALLERGIC SHINERS.
Allergic shiners? Did she see shiny things in my eyes? Were they excessively bloodshot? Did my eyes reflect weirdly, my retina somehow rebelling against the onslaught of pollen, ready (against the laws of physics, medicine and common sense) to detach or do something weird at a moment's notice? Immunoglobulin E clumping in ways only a skilled practitioner could detect in seconds just by glancing my way?
I had no idea.
So I looked it up.And learned that it just means I have BIG DARK circles under my eyes, apparently SCREAMING to be noticed so much so that they were noted on my medical chart as if I had black eyes. OHHH. Duh. I should have known. Shiners.
It did NOT help that I only had 4.5 hours of sleep the night before and was exhausted. Whether I have "allergic shiners" or "idiot shiners" (through self-enforced sleep deprivation) remains to be determined...
spleened by me at 10:44 PM