Ever had this happen to you?

Travel Forums General Talk Ever had this happen to you?

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1. Posted by s_hoot (Full Member 497 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

Ever been in a foreighn country on a trip and had a medical emergency of some sort and had a hell of a time with it???

My first one so far happened to me in Rome, Italy last December. I was on a month long, or suppose to be a month long, vacation from England where I was stationed in the Navy. I was going to spend a week or so in Rome visiting friends and staying at my favorite hostel in the world, Yellow Hostel, and then maybe going into Eastern Europe for the next three weeks and just bum around till i had to be back in England.

Well on my 4th night in Yellow, I was asked, with my strong Navy muscles, by a few girls, to open their bottle of wine. They neglected to tell me that they dropped the bottle once and it may have had a crack or two in it but i couldnt see any when i picked it up. The only bottle opener the hostel had was one of those crappy, screw in ones with the little lever on it to put on the bottle tip for u to press down on and pop it out. When I went to pop it out, the bottle shattered and i put a good gash in my middle finger on my left hand. There was blood everywhere and the white wine was now a red wine. My friends who worked in the hostel were freakin out cleaning up the trail of blood i left going to the front desk then to the kitchen sink.

To make a much longer story short. It was 11pm, I only had one beer so far, thank God, i spoke very little and i mean very little Italian, and i needed stiches. One free clinic and six stiches later I was almost good as new. My friend Sid from Yellow came along and translated for me. I flew back to my base in England two days later cause i could not do anything with my hand and was afraid of the stich job the free clinic did. I went back and finished my trip then after the stiches came out, only made it as far as another 8 wonderfull nights in Rome though and one of the best Christmases of my life in the hostel.

I now have a great scar on my left finer that is my permanent souvenier from Rome, I dont have much feeling in the spot but i still think its cool!

I have always heard that if you travel enough something like this is bound to happen to you as disaster, if given enough time is an inevitable thing of travel.

Anybody else have any good war stories??

2. Posted by samsara_ (Travel Guru 5353 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

Something sort of similar to that

(I wasnt grinning at the time I can tell you...)

On a skiing trip in Killington, VT - my brother and I were sitting in a chair lift on our way up one of the mountains. I had my arm draped around the back of the chair with my thumb directly underneath the hinge. I left my arm in that position all the way up until my brother lifted the bar and ...you can guess the rest!

The pain was excruiating. I dont remember if I roared or not. All I can remember is trying to balance myself to slide off the slope. Then I just collapsed in the snow in pain. Taking my glove off, I though I was going to see my thumb hanging off.

There was a LOT of blood but thank god my thumb had just burst. Had to stick it in the snow for a while to numb the pain. Of course, I was crying my eyes out like I was 5 again, and there were all these little wide-eyed kids looking at me rethinking the whole skiing thing.

There was a little first aid hut at the top of the run and we were able to bandage the thumb up temporarily. I then had to ski all the way back down to the resort to First Aid to get it seen to properly.

I couldnt ski for the rest of the day. Instead, I took the painkillers I was given and a few shots of JD to help me along and drowned my sorrows in the bar for the afternoon. :(

I have a little scar too which feels weird if I press down on it, but at least I still have both thumbs. :)

3. Posted by Gelli (Travel Guru 2457 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

I`m one of those people who just breaks things, so have been in hospitals in over a dozen different countries, and broke bones in probably about the same! All of them have been interesting experiences (and Ouch at the time), but none have had me needed to be repatriated. Normally i just get stiched up/casted etc, and then continue on my travels. I can say that being in plaster on crutches and a neck brace (much better than arms) is second only to travelling with my inflatible camel as a way of being picked up when hitchhiking!

I did manage to have my collar bone broken in (eventually) 14 different places after being fallen on by a fat American woman once...

4. Posted by GregW (Travel Guru 2635 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

I got altitude sickness trying to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. It was the start of the 4th day on the mountain, and the head guide after listening to my chest and hearing the crackle that indicates an onset of HAPE (High Altitude Pulmonary Edema) decided that I should go down to the next camp and wait while the others in my group summitted. I set out with Paul (one of the guides) for the next lower camp.

After about half and hour of walking, Paul was very concerned. He said that I was moving too slowly, and that I should go right down the mountain today. We would walk to the main path, and then a stretcher would meet us and take me down the rest of the way.

I got worse and worse as the day went on, with Paul most of the time having to drag me just to keep me going. When we finally got to the main path, a stretcher wasn't available, so instead the members of the mountain rescue crew tried to carry me.

First the main rescue crew member tried to carry me on his shoulders, much as a parent holds his child to see a parade in a crowd. After getting me about 3 inches off the ground, he faltered and had to put me back down. "How much do you weigh?" he demanded.

"About 100 kilos," I replied, adding in a few extra kilos for equipment and such.

"Bah, more like 120," he said back. Bad enough that I was sick with HAPE and giving up my dream of climbing Kilimanjaro, now I felt fat as well.

Finally a stretcher arrived, and we rolled down the mountain. However, the one wheel kept falling off the stretcher, and so we kept having to stop. I don't speak swahili very well, but the word "helicopter" kept coming up. Given the tone in their voices, I am guessing that they were complaining that they didn't have a helicopter to take stupid North American tourists off the mountain.

Finally around 11 pm (after starting out the day at 8:30am), we arrived at the base of the road. A truck met us, and they drove me to the hospital.

Just coming down the mountain to regular altitude, I was already feeling better. The nurse looked me over and gave me a shot of steriods to help my breathing (which was still a little shallow). She also gave me a presciption of an oral steriod that I could pick up in the morning. She looked grave though, "I have no idea how much this will cost."

The next day, walking to the pharmacy, I was worried. How much would my prescription cost? Did I have the money to cover it? Should I call my insurance company first? I arrived and handed my prescription in at the counter. They came back and told me the price. It worked out to less than 2 dollars.

The hospital visit was around 150 dollars. I didn't even bother submitting to my insurance company. The last time I tried to claim insurance (for a hospitial visit I had in Atlanta), it took me 6 months and more than 10 telephone calls to get my 350 dollars back. I didn't think the time was worth it.

5. Posted by Cupcake (Travel Guru 8468 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

Quoting Gelli

I did manage to have my collar bone broken in (eventually) 14 different places after being fallen on by a fat American woman once...

What weird kinky sex games do you play? ;)

6. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

My most exciting visit to the doctor abroad (actually, he came to visit me) was when I had an allergic reaction to anti-inflamatory meds I was taking for a busted knee. Just before leaving for Spain, my knee started to swell - all by itself - and I ended up on crutches (and eventually gave those up to be pushed around in a wheelchair like a queen) for most of my trip.

I wore sunscreen the whole trip, until one day I got frustrated with my pathetic excuse for a tan and decided to forgo the stuff. Well! Ten minutes in I had little bumps all over my hands, my arms, my legs - my face! So the hotel called the doctor on call, who told me you're supposed to stay out of the sun (or wear - duh! - sunscreen) when taking anti-inflamatories. So 10 minutes and $100 US later I was as good as new. Well, excpt for the knee, which gave me trouble until my last day there.

And as a P.S.: turns out the problem stemmed from a slightly weakened thigh muscle, and the solution was - get ready for it - to EXERCISE the thing. By walking. Without crutches. Good thing I saw the specialitst AFTER I got back. Dang clinic doctors.

7. Posted by SeeTheSky (Full Member 558 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

using whatever is messed up always makes it better. trust me, i get hurt ALOT, and unless the bone fully shattered, use it. it will heal twice as fast. increases blood flow. doctors just have to be super cautious so they dont get sued all the time. aint america great?
i never got hurt travelling, but i did tear my leg open pretty bad on the job once. i tore a hole big enough in my shin that i lay my pointer finger on the bare shin bone itself and had room to spare. it was cuase i was bmxing on the job, (what can i say i was bored) i didnt wanna have to stop riding though, so i kept saying to my manager. "they can just put butterfly bandages on it right?" and he would reply, "im gonna feed you to the freakin seagulls" looking back it was really funny, and no real reprecussions physically so its all good. i didnt even get fired.

8. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

I feel very lucky!!! The worst thing that has ever happend to me is a severe case of food poisoning from a hamburger in Negril, Jamaica. I felt like absolute "death warmed over" for 2 days, but did not seek medical attention and just rode it out. (I trusted my own opinion more than anyone else's...) The experience did cause my Dad and Beerman (my husband) to get to know each other better though. They were stuck having to entertain each other (instead of my Dad using me as the middle man in the process) and the results of that alone - PRICELESS!!! Can't say it was well worth the 1.5 days in bed - but it made the rest of the trip much more pleasant. (My Dad didn't like Beerman - he was too (get this!) NICE!) But, that is my only brush with a physical ailment or accident - thankfully!!!!

9. Posted by Gelli (Travel Guru 2457 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

(My Dad didn't like Beerman - he was too (get this!) NICE!)


Heading off topic i know, but I think we need Beermans version of this story....

10. Posted by Gelli (Travel Guru 2457 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

What weird kinky sex games do you play?

Actually, they normally involve a lama, 3 bags of gravel, a pot plant, a bowl of pink custard and a blow up lawyer, but thats another story