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I was an LPN in a nursing home for 20 years.

There were bad bugs in our building.

People that I directly took care of MRSA patients.

Either with wounds that were positive for MRSA or they would have it colonized.

We also had VRE and that is transmitted in stool usually believe.

Also C diff.

I was usually okay....until I was taking care of the patient with shingles and contracted chicken pox.

My whole life changed then.

Guess it could have happened anywhere.

I could have gotten exposed through many other venues.

I was taking care of this lady and I needed to get liquid tylenol in her.

She would only open her mouth a tiny bit and take tiny sips.

It would take me a good 20 minutes to get the 20 ml in her.

I wonder why now I didn't just ask for a suppository it would have been quick and easy.

Well the one day I was in there trying to get that Tylenol in her I was so tired and forgot and sat down on her bed,

As soon as I did it I realized it was probably a no no.

I was around her for days while she had her shingles.

Feeding her-they did not isolate patients with shingles.

But I did everything I normally would do being careful around her wounds that were seeping and wearing gloves washing hands etc.

So I am not sure why I got it.

I had been around shingles and never had a problem although I am almost certain I didn't have as much physical contact that I did with this woman.

Honestly I always felt self conscious.

It's a real art to take care of someone who has a bad bug but give good hands on care and not act like you're trying to keep your distance.

Also I took care of many dying with cancer hospice patients.

Many different types of cancer,

With the idea that there are viruses involved with cancer it really made me wonder what as staff you are exposing yourself to.

I know cancer is not catching but the virus thing is a bit scary.

I read they were looking at different types of viruses causing certain cancers.

In a way it would make sense.

This is a bit odd too where I was working people would seem fine, seem to decline and then have bulges start happening that we assumed was some type of cancer.

It could have been an enlarged liver maybe if they died of liver failure I suppose.

Can I just say I'm glad to be out of healthcare.

After what happened to me it left me a bit paranoid and a bit of a germaphobe.

While I was there I would get bronchitis really bad upper respiratory/sinus at least yearly.

The type that last for weeks at a time.

I finally had to have my tonsils removed just too much sickness.

Then the stomach flus would go through that place eventually they started just quarantining the wing that had it to try to prevent the spread but I would bring that home to my family at least yearly.

They were highly contagious bugs,

One time it was so and they called the health dept and got it cultured.

So I am seeing improvement in my health since not working.

It is a blessing.

One nurse several years ago worked through the flu.

She just kept on working while everyone else got sick.

All of a sudden she got very sick she was asthmatic I guess and she actually ended up with pneumonia/MRSA.

They put her in a drug induced coma and she died the next day.

We would all walk around saying we were probably next and we all probably had it!

We stayed because it was a good job.

They paid decent and we didn't know what else we could do to make income for our families.

Sigh so glad to not have that worry now.

I don't want to go back.

There are days I miss it but I don't miss that part of it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've never worked in healthcare but here's a thought for you- I have read that there is a statistically significant amount of women that work in healthcare that also have inappropriate sinus tachycardia. IST is another dysautonomia that is common. Maybe the same is true for POTS. The amount of women with IST in healthcare is so significant that there has been confirmed studies on it from what my cardiologist told me. It Is also often cured by exercise.

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