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Re: [pct-l] giardia

At 09:17 PM 6/5/99 -0700, Barbara Ann Rudlich <rhubarb@dwp.net> wrote:

>Flagyl is NOT an antibiotic.

Several medical references I have consulted refer to it as an antibiotic, so any distinction you are making is so fine as to be lost on lots of folks who generally seem to know what they are doing. "Prosser,Douglas A" a pharmacist posting from a Kaiser Permanente email address seems to think that it also kills bacteria, which makes an antibiotic, right?

>>Giardiasis can be defintively confirmed by the presence of the cysts encapsulating the protozoa in a stool sample, which is not a difficult thing to provide if you have classic symptoms of the parasite infestation - pardon the bad joke. <<

Once again, I am not a physician, but one I spoke to tonight, who specializes in travel medicine here in San Diego, said that he seldom orders stool sample for Giardia diagnosis because the test easily misses it a significant percentage of the time. He diagnoses based on the  symptoms of Giardia, and exposure.

>Please talk to your doctor about any confusion you may have about bacteria, cysts, amoeba, or antibiotics. General information websites are not the best source for medical information. 

I don't have any confusion. The references I normally use are printed, but they are difficult to refer to in email, so I use websites for reference in this forum.

It looked to me like the pharmacist who posted on this subject indicated that you are confused. Since you are a professional defending a statement you made in a public forum, I don't expect you to change your position, and I don't really care about the technical definition of the class of the drugs in question, so I won't address it again. 

Lets discuss the use of the drug, not the technical classification.

We are just approaching this from different angles. I assume that the hiker is competent, well read and can take responsibility for their own treatment. I couple that  with the extreme difficulty in accessing a physician on the trail, and conclude that self diagnosis and treatment is a reasonable option.

You take the more traditional view that the hiker should abdicate the responsibility for his care into "more competent hands." There is room for both views.

Brick Robbins
who is not a doctor and doesn't even play one on TV

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