Thursday, May 17, 2007

Shingles...They're Not Just For Roofs Anymore

Okay, let's see...I'm 43. So far this year (and bear in mind, it's only May) I've had cardiac arrhythmia, cascading seizures, and now...shingles! This, in fact, is an actual picture of my actual back with it's festering herpetic pustulence.

Well, there. And I thought I was out of things to bitch about.

Luckily, on me shingles look hot. They make chicks want me more than ever. Who can resist a weeping pustule on a whining lesbian?

And I was reading up on them:


Description: A patient with an acute vesicular inflammation on the skin to the recrudescence of chickenpox virus.

I have a recrudescence??? Right here in front of everyone? No wonder people snicker behind my back. It's the pustule equivalent of walking around with toilet paper on your shoe.

Luckily, all the literature says to have it tested by a lab. And guess who does the test for herpetic lesions? Me! It's called a Tzanck smear, and it's done by applying a glass slide directly to the lesion and then staining it with Wright's stain and looking for multinucleated giant cells.
It's actually easier to see with Pap stain, but who's got Pap stain laying around? I might actually have occasion to check out someones herpetic lesion, but I'd never look at anyone's cervix unless we were dating. And even then, it's considered a sexual faux pas to collect scrapings on a slide for later.

So, here's a multinucleated giant cell, in case you happen to see one crawling down your hallway in search of an innocent torso to attach to. If it does manage to find you, don't panic. Just put on your foil helmet and await further instructions.


Suzanne said...

Oh my. Feel better soon!!!!

marl said...


hope it's not too painful or itchy.

god, the cell slide looks just gross.