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Category Archives: Health

Skin lightening practices: unmasking the darkness within

Skin lightening practices have gradually become ingrained in our urban culture with majority of women (and men) being faced with the decision to lighten their skin from as early on as their secondary school days. It’s no more odd to see a woman whose skin colour varies distinctly from her family’s or her childhood pics and as more people openly verbalize their affiliations to #teamlightskin the practice becomes deeply entrenched.

These practices have gained popularity for many reasons, foremost of which is the issue of colourism. Colourism is prejudice or discrimination against individuals with a dark skin tone, typically among people of the same ethnic or racial group. So many women and men- because this issue has progressed to almost uniformly affect both sexes, have been discriminated against because of their skin colour. Lighter skin has been associated with better job opportunities in some sectors of the economy like the banking sector and the media. Lighter skin has been shown to be more attractive to the opposite sex and society celebrates the birth of a lighter skinned child almost as much as they celebrate the birth of a boy child. Lighter skin has also been associated with a higher self-esteem probably as a consequence of the effects of colourism. Prejudice against an individual with a darker skin tone is no different from apartheid or racism which were issues of international concern. The difference is its subtlety, as many would deny the problem even exists in the magnitude that it has been described.

Skin lightening practices are enshrouded in even more layers of darkness. One of them is the constant battle to overcome and mask the side effects attributable to the use of these agents. Common skin complications include stretch marks which are usually wide, dark or red and ugly compared by some to a tear in a fabric and common on the arms, thighs, buttocks, breasts and belly. Another complication is thin skin which is injured by mild physical contact and is very difficult for a doctor to sew together during surgical emergencies. There have also been reports of body odour because of the chemical reactions of the agents with sebum, poor wound healing, abnormal growth of hair on the face and chest, a myriad of skin infections especially fungal and bacterial infections, a worsening of skin conditions like acne and increased risk of sunburns and deposition of a dark pigment in some sun-exposed areas of the body. The most tragic long term skin complication of skin lightening is the increased risk of skin cancer.

Alarmingly, application of lightening agents on the skin have also been associated with some systemic complications like obesity, diabetes, hypertension, liver disease and kidney disease. Case reports and research have shown an association between these systemic diseases and application of lightening creams or soaps which contain agents like mercury, hydroquinone and steroids on the skin for an extended duration of time. A lot of women who develop any of the above side effects are ill- advised to switch to another brand of skin lightening agents and finally see the dermatologist or other health professional when it is too late. Women fear the stigma associated with cessation of bleaching practices as the repigmentation makes them feel less confident, less beautiful and judged. So many hide the side effects in a cloak of darkness and continue to bask in the pseudoeuphoria of belonging to #teamlightskin.

Advances in the beauty industry mean that there are potentially safer albeit more expensive bleaching options and these are marketed as pills, injections and organic brands. Some women have even begun bleaching their unborn children by taking pills that could potentially cause birth defects. Science is ever evolving and like the drug Thalidomide which was considered safe till after years of use it was found to cause severe birth defects in babies, some skin lightening practices could be considered safe now and their side effects only revealed years after use. There are also some side effects which occur regardless of the safety profile of the skin lightening agent used. These are attributed to the removal of one’s melanin pigment which serves to protect from the harmful UV rays of the sun and include sun burns and photoaging which is described as premature aging of the skin caused by repeated exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UV), primarily from the sun and the increased risk of skin cancer.

Ending colorism and empowering every African to embrace melanin is the only way we can kick skin lightening practices off the continent. The physical and psychological long term effects are not worth the short-lived hype. Patients have died from kidney diseases attributable to long term exposure to toxins in skin lightening agents, others are living with chronic diseases and self-esteem issues. The government regulatory bodies and legislators have a role to play in restricting access to these harmful agents but until they do, self-preservation is key and so is being our brother’s keeper. Say no to skin lightening practices, beauty is never to die for!

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Posted by on August 21, 2018 in Health

 

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Am I too black?

Am I too black?

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I was 12 years old when it hit me that I could be too dark. Perhaps God had been a bit overeager with the melanin and where the manual said a pinch he threw it all in.

But the preacher says God doesn’t make mistakes…

I was walking through Tejuosho market that blazing hot afternoon and a couple of innocuous market women bored with the fact that they hadn’t made any sales all afternoon decided to shake the very core of my foundation perhaps for sport or maybe the way mothers do when they think they are doing what’s best for you.

“Sisi you too black”

“Come make we give you cream”

“Man no like black skin like this oh”

“No mind her black and shine, come make I give you the one wey go tone you small”

“This one go maintain your colour make you light small, all the big girls use it”

And so they hovered around like birds of prey while I tried desperately to escape their greasy palms.

Something changed that day and I became acutely aware that I had lived with these jibes for most of my life. My friends called me “Blacky shadow”, family often referred to my darker skin tone. I was often described as the black girl which wouldn’t have been weird if I lived abroad but I was somewhat bemused because everyone around me was black- well racially speaking.

I tried to fix my inadequacies by attaining flawless skin by hook or crook! Tried using my mom’s creams and soaps. Even reacted to one of them, a French cream given to her by a friend which turned out to be liquid soap and yours truly slathered it generously on her face before bed and woke up to swollen eyes and lips which took their damn good time to resolve. Or the time I had that one pimple and put an antiseptic soap on my face overnight and woke up with chemical burns! Had to wear my hair like a rockstar, obscuring most of my face and I got laughed at by the unkind kids in church. Needless to say, I was obsessed with my skin. That obsession steered me towards the path of Dermatology and fuelled my passion for dark skin activism.

Last year I decided my dermatology thesis would be on skin lightening because it was the elephant in the room. Every body knew somebody who was bleaching. The media celebrated it, dark skin actors and actresses were sidelined, the cosmetic industry was still making billions of dollars annually and NAFDAC had released a watery statement banning the use of mercury, hydroquinone and steroids in skin lightening agents but of course didn’t enforce it and the market still thrived. I even had medical colleagues that were bleaching- this was certainly going to be an unpopular topic.

Do you know that 77% of Nigerians are currently using skin lightening agents and research shows that the figures may be much higher.

Women who claim to be against bleaching are toning their skin to ‘maintain’ their colour. People are mixing steroid containing creams like Funbact-A into their body creams and acting surprised when their skin gets lighter. Like one woman said “I was lighter skinned as a child, it’s my true colour coming out”. But then she couldn’t understand why she suddenly had unsightly stretch marks.

People are free to do whatever they want with their skin so why am I so concerned with this?

The Federal Ministry of Health warns that smokers are liable to die young…

The Federal Ministry of Health warns that tobacco smoking is dangerous to health…

Front-and-Back-views-of-Cigarette-pack-in-Nigeria-showing-text-only-warning-labels

Boldly inscribed on every cigarette pack! Smokers are free to smoke but fully aware of the adverse effects. People who lighten their skin have no idea what they are signing up for. Research showed that less than a tenth of skin bleachers were aware of the side effects. I want the Federal Government to put inscriptions about the adverse effects of skin lightening on every bottle or jar of skin lightening cream sold in the market. Ignorance is killing Nigerians!

I watched a 25 year old girl die from kidney failure. She had been on maintenance dialysis but her kidneys couldn’t keep up. Her only risk factor was the use of skin lightening agents for a couple of years. She had started in secondary school because a guy she liked picked a lighter skinned classmate over her…

You can’t change the behaviour if you don’t change the perception.

Here are 20 adverse effects of use of skin lightening agents (the list is not exhaustive)

  1. Obesity
  2. Diabetes
  3. Hypertension
  4. Poor wound healing
  5. Skin discolouration (especially on the cheeks, feet and knuckles)
  6. Kidney disease
  7. Liver disease
  8. Ring worm and other fungal infections
  9. Stretch marks
  10. Recurrent boils and bacterial infections
  11. Thinning of the skin and increased skin fragility
  12. Heart valve infections (from intravenous injections of skin lightening agents)
  13. Sudden death from air embolism (from intravenous injections of skin lightening agents)
  14. Skin cancer
  15. Sun burns
  16. Increased redness of the skin
  17. Prematurely ageing skin
  18. Growth of unwanted hair on parts of the body like the chin and chest in women
  19. Body odour
  20. Worsening of pre-existing skin conditions like acne.

People have different thresholds and skin lightening agents have different strengths so people may experience these side effects with varying lengths of time. Some skin-lightening agents especially the newer ones like the organic brands and Glutathione may promise little or no side effects but one thing is for certain, if you strip away your melanin by using skin lightening agents, your skin will be more exposed to the ultraviolet rays of the sun and your risk of skin cancer and sun burns will definitely increase. Nature has established that those with more melanin live in places with greater sun exposure and that’s why the Caucasians with less melanin have a higher risk of skin cancer with prolonged exposure to the sun. Dear skin bleacher, you are now a Caucasian living under the blazing hot Nigerian sun. That mole may not be ordinary, have it checked out before it gets you!

There’s so much to say about skin lightening but for now I ask that you join my crusade by signing my petition to ban the sale of harmful skin lightening agents over the counter.

Young women and men need to know that their skin colour doesn’t define them. We are Africans and having black skin comes with the territory. Please follow my Instagram page  1000beautiful_black_women to join the campaign.

#blackisbeautiful

#backtoblack

#saynotobleaching

#theNigerianDermatologist

xxx

 

 

 
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Posted by on May 9, 2018 in Health

 

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Deafening Silence

My ears were ringing again and I felt like my head was going to implode. I counted to 10 between deep breaths hoping the whoosh of expiration would blow away the waves.

Why couldn’t anyone else hear the deafening silence? Why was the still thunder tearing us apart while everyone looked on like it was just another day?

Lassa had killed so many already but all I heard was talk and more talk about the 2019 elections. The government turned its nose in the air and the media buried its head in the sand as yet another health worker breathed his last unsaved by the care his 5000 naira hazard allowance could cover. Killed because he stood by the Hippocratic oath in the face of danger.

There were no longer beds available at the Lassa center and staff worked in trepidation setting up makeshift tents and dragging old beds unto the open field for wounded soldiers. Yet the silence continued…

The rats have won, the rats have won! That would be the dirge soon if something wasn’t done to curb the growing number of victims. Victims whose close contacts could not be fully traced till the next set dropped like flies.

Lassa is here,

Lassa strikes fear

Lassa is on a killing spree

while the culprit rats still run free!

Protect your food

because the government doesn’t seem to care about the deaths in your neighborhood!!!

Stay Woke!

Dear Nigerian government, you have a duty to your people and to your health personnel! #endthesilence

Dear News media, you promised us unbiased, real time news! Give Lassa a voice so we can curb this menace. #endthesilence

Dear Health personnel, protect yourself first. Universal precautions could save your life. Assume the worst with every patient. Any patient with a history of fever should be screened. #staywoke

Dear Nigerian, na only one life you get. Kill the rats, don’t touch their urine, faeces or blood. Don’t eat rats and store your grains and food in plastic containeres with covers so that rats can’t urinate or pass faeces on them. #staywoke

God help us all!

And God bless the families of thise who have lost their lives to this virus especially the health workers killed in the line of duty.

Say NO to this deafening silence. The Nigerian government should tackle this issue NOW!!!

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2018 in Health

 

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Steths don’t lie!

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Steths don’t lie, people do.

I glance at my stethoscope and sigh. The day is October 1st 2014 and I am sitting at an independence day program listening to one of the speakers tear to shreds the last atom of self-respect I have. I think of a thousand other places I’d rather be instead of right there lost in the crowd, sitting on the 8th row but still invisible to the one man who claims to know all about me. When did I become this villain, this hated persona whose pride in her work has been snatched away by ignorant speakers such as the man who stands before me? Men who have the crowd roaring in excitement, who know just what to say to get the mob agitated and ready to do his bidding and care less about who has to hang for the sake of a good speech! I zip up my bag hurriedly, I don’t want Mr Steths hearing such bull, it could break him…and a good Littman stethoscope costs about £150 these days.

Who gave this man the permission to perpetrate ignorance? If it was any other function, we definitely would have settled it outside (I am tougher than I look oh). I think of all the casualties of this long drawn out war between the people and doctors and sigh… (if Oliver Pope was real, this definitely would need fixing). I wish I could introduce the speaker to Mrs A, my dedicated co-worker who is now a widow responsible for three children after her husband died of HIV following a needle-stick injury while he was treating a patient. Mrs A has the virus too but you would never know as she goes about her duties cheerfully. Or maybe to  Mr B, who shed tears when he was told he wouldn’t be paid this month. His rent is due and so are his children’s school fees and contrary to what this arrogant speaker is telling the crowd, Mr B has no savings to fall back on. He barely manages to keep his head above water in the sea of middle class men. And so many other doctors share his fate yet he scuttles to the emergency room when summoned to see a new patient, his problems momentarily forgotten. How does Mr B explain to his children who rarely get to see their father that all the effort he puts into his job night and day is not enough to ensure their school fees are paid on time? How does he explain to the world that the thought of buying a brand new car is merely a fantasy he couldn’t dare to entertain? Yet he is supposed to be a doctor, a senior registrar for that matter. The world doesn’t know about this but ask Mr Steths, he hears everything.

What this speaker doesn’t know is that beneath the white coat and brisk demeanor lies a broken man. An overworked, unappreciated member of society who is expected to serve at all costs regardless of his present circumstances no better than a mere slave. His dignity long forgotten, his legacy merely an embarrassment. His pleas for better work conditions shelved in the archives of greedy employees. Nobody remembers he looks death in the face each and everyday. Nobody remembers that he handles patients and diseases that could potentially cost him his life and that he walks boldly where others fear to tread (R.I.P Dr Adedavoh). We are not afraid to die and some of us have died, unsung heroes just to save a life. We wouldn’t mind Ebola and Hepatitis if it meant our children would be well taken care of if we passed on, we wouldn’t mind HIV and Lassa fever if it meant that we would be able to afford a home of our own or a car that wasn’t ‘tokunbo’. We wouldn’t mind the stench of a diabetic foot or Fournier’s gangrene if we had great working conditions. We wouldn’t mind the gore of a burst abdomen or the vigil beside a critically ill patient if we were appreciated by the people we give our lives for each and every day. But even without these perceived luxuries we work tirelessly everyday to ensure that the lives in our care do not waste away and instead of gratitude we are painted as greedy and wicked.

Free services are demanded of us by men and women who would not dream of letting the doctor’s child go to school for free or dream of giving him merchandise without money. Men and women who would not save the doctor the littlest expense, they would smile at him and say ‘Ah ah, you be doctor na, you get all of the money’. They grumble that the doctor would dare drop his stethoscope for even a day in the name of a strike but pray do tell me if there is another way to get the government to listen and yet another way to make them stay true to their promises. Like a slave who revolts after tireless beatings, doctors have revolted refusing to suffer in silence any longer. They prayed for a voice, one to fight their battles as they focused on saving lives and who better to do that than the very patients who they had managed but these patients so easily forget help rendered and join the mob to throw stones, forgetting that those who oppress the doctors are the same ones who oppress the masses, the same ones who always seek medical help abroad and cannot be even the least bit worried about the deplorable working conditions and quality of services in the health sector. My people shouldn’t we be joining forces to fight this menace rather than fighting each other?  Don’t be deceived by false statistics, for every doctor that lives in luxury there are sixty others living in squalor. Maybe it’s time the doctor started trading by barter because the other option would be to provide his every need, to allow his children go to school for free, to make sure he didn’t have to worry about his rent or his family’s expenses so that he could focus solely on saving the lives brought before him. Let’s start with you mister car dealer who refuses to go to hospital, it’s not your right to have free consultation over the phone, it’s a favor and one good turn deserves another. How about a car at half price?

They say becoming a consultant is the peak of our career, I have seen pitiable consultants who could only be called successful within the four walls of a hospital where they wield their diminutive power over subordinates till the day closes and they drag their worn out shoes into their worn out car, praying that by some stroke of good fate it would start without pushing. Why would you even entrust your life or the life of your loved ones into the hands of a man who was depressed and disgruntled with his job? It is quite ridiculous to assume he would do his best for you when the society he lives in does not care about him, when the people he works for do not care about him. It’s hard to be a hero every blessed day, doctors don’t have the luxury of being human. And for many the future is bleak.

Ask my stethoscope, he has seen it all…He has heard the deceptive words of the medical elders as they sold us out for personal gain, he shuddered at the closed door meetings, his presence forgotten as they made plans to trample upon their own for the good of their pockets.
Mr Steths ears burned when he was roughly pushed aside by the grey haired man who eagerly advised the president on the best course of action against his own kind in exchange for a place among the ruling council. Let’s not even get started about the time he heard the management warn the doctors to not treat any patient for free as they would have the cost deducted from their salaries along with a fine. Mr Management was snoring in his house the day the woman who couldn’t afford the money for the surgery died in the waiting room. No one saw the unshed tears glistening in the doctor’s eyes, his hands tied. He pressed his empty wallet against his thigh, wishing he had the five thousand naira needed by the patient for the deposit. His colleague had been fired a week before for daring to flaunt management’s orders. He needed the job but it was costing him his soul. Ask Mr Steths about all the times doctors have had to count out precious Naira to assist a patient who desperately needed a drug or test. The deed promptly forgotten as the patient ventures back into the world, the doctor’s kindness buried along with painful hospital memories not even resurfacing during testimony time at church. Perhaps these patients see it as their right, perhaps they believe we are an elite group of cyborgs created to serve…I wonder…

This uncouth speaker talks about us knowing what we signed up for when we decided to become doctors. What ten year old knows the truth about being a doctor in Nigeria? What sixteen year old filling her JAMB form can recognize the sorrow behind the doctor’s smile?  What twenty-three year old graduating from medical school knows the dissatisfaction surrounding the practice of medicine? The old doctors are tired of fighting, their eyes cast down in defeat. The younger doctors are becoming hustlers. After all you are nothing in this country without money. Dignity doesn’t put food on the table or pay the bills. Yet we serve, for whatever reason, whether it is to earn a salary or out of human compassion or for the sake of the passion we feel for the medical profession, we serve. WE SERVE.

My steths doesn’t lie, he doesn’t need a PR agent to make him look good, he believes in the greater good of humanity but people lie…

I could be lying right now like many others before me but then again I just might be speaking the truth and perhaps I have been able to give you a little insight amidst the jumble of words. So the next time you sit down judging a doctor, think of him as a person, not necessarily a good person but a person nonetheless who doesn’t care about where you have been or what you have done, who doesn’t care about the extra hours or the unending sacrifices but is only interested in helping you the best way he can even if he has a long list of unmet needs hanging over his head. It is his job description isn’t it? He isn’t the enemy, he isn’t the oppressor. He is human just like you.

Love your doctor, it’s healthy!
A heartfelt thank you gives us the sort of high that makes unpaid bills float away…Ask Mr Steths, he has been around far longer than I have and could teach you a thing or two!

Have a great day Chutzpah fam,
Xoxoxo

 
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Posted by on October 13, 2014 in Health

 

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Triage Patients to stop the Ebola epidemic; An essential tool for every health worker!

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If you are a health worker, hospital administrator or any other staff in a health facility then THIS IS FOR YOU!

 

Hello Nigerians,

The Ebola virus has become an unwelcome visitor and calculated steps must be taken to curb this epidemic before it escalates. Do not be a victim. As a health worker you are in the fore-front and you need to be armed with this questionnaire to ensure that the patient whose life you are trying to save does not become the very patient responsible for your demise. Hospitals should print out these questionnaires and have them at the front desk. Insist all patients fill them before they are attended to and above all, every health worker should obey universal precautions even if the questionnaire puts the patient in the clear.

Please click on the links below to view and download the questionnaire and spread the word. Thank you!

The BE questionnaire- Instructions

The BE Questionnaire

 
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Posted by on August 12, 2014 in Health

 

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World War E!!!

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The Ebola outbreak takes the world unawares as the virus which was first reported in West Africa breaks through borders and boundaries. Transmitted from person to person through touch, the whole world becomes one large bucket brigade as the virus passes from country to country hidden in the body of an innocuous passenger with a dark secret. People fear Ebola but they fear the concentration camp worse.

“It’s like an early death sentence…”
A business man who was caught after hiding for several weeks exclaimed. He had been hoping to prove a point when he didn’t catch the virus, alas, the symptoms were unmistakable and he had finally quit running.

A special task force ETF has been empowered to force all suspected contacts of victims into a concentration camp. The concentration camps were initially built to be health facilities for quarantining suspected cases and contacts but as more people got infected, supplies ran low and soon they were just containments, temporary jails for soon to be corpses. Every country had a concentration camp. As Amanpour had remarked; “The world was once called a global village but the same technology that made China one airplane away from the US has aided in the spread of the biggest threat to humanity’s existence ever recorded”.
The US was under attack, countries were desperate for ZMAPP the fabled cure. The US President had released a statement that the serum was not yet ready to be exported as it was still undergoing clinical trials but the world was not buying that. Everybody knew about the much publicized cure of the two American health workers and the Germans and Russians were ready to do about anything to have their hands on it. Even China and the middle east were preparing to attack. The Pentagon had its plate full. Containing the virus and working on the cure was starting to take second place to protecting the people of America from the subtle attacks by other nations who were ready to do anything to lay their hands on that cure.

The President of Nigeria looked at his breakfast plate, a dry taste in his mouth. He had been drinking salt water and bathing in salt water for weeks now and he was dehydrated to say the least. His blood pressure wasn’t doing too good lately and he wasn’t sure if it was as a result of the excess salt in his system or the mounting pressure from the scourge of Ebola. Two of the ministers in his cabinet had died of kidney failure since this salt madness started but who would blame them? Salt and water seemed to be what every Nigerian without the virus swore by. He knew deep down it was doing more harm than good but the Ebola scare made everyone a bit mad.

“Bring me more bitter kola”, He roared.

Bitter Kola had become black gold since the unsubstantiated claims by that Iwu man. He hated the thing, much preferred Alcohol but like his aide had pointed out, a dead president would only make his enemies rejoice but really who was rejoicing now? He was afraid to admit he missed the days of Boko Haram. Now humanity was united against a common enemy, a biological threat that conspirators believed the US President was behind. If it wasn’t warfare, why wouldn’t he release the cure? He took a bite of his bitter kola and marked another day on his calendar. He should have traveled for the world summit today but nobody was doing any more traveling since the virus broke loose. Countries now spontaneously shot down any plane in their airspace and in this time of turmoil, it would be a waste to die from anything but Ebola.

…Another earthquake in China
Hurricane Genevieve kills millions….

The US President called a top secret closed-door meeting. He needed an update and fast. Intelligence reports said Russia was releasing a missile that could wipe out half of America if the serum was not released to the open market.

“These people are mad! Can’t they see there are Americans dying of Ebola? If the serum was so great wouldn’t we save our own?” the Chief of Staff banged the table in exasperation.

“Where are we with the serum modifications?” Mr President asked as calmly as he could muster.

“Sir, it’s a dead-end. The work on the serum has yielded nothing positive.”

“And the two scientists?”

“Still alive and contained but we fear that they are growing stronger by the day. The serum seems to have mutated their DNA to…to…something not quite human”

“So what’s the plan? I say we give the world the bloody serum and let them worry about the side-effects rather than face annihilation.” The head of the CIA had a determination in his voice that made everybody nod unconsciously.

“We can’t do that. Imagine exposing humans to a serum that takes away their very humanity? That would be like creating another race and they would fight us for dominance, survival of the fittest. Humanity is at its weakest right now, I don’t think we could survive that. Almost one-third of the world’s population is infected with Ebola which means we would have one-third of the world’s people mutated”

“But Mr President it would end the outbreak once and for all and then we could contain the mutated people in strongholds while scientists all over the world worked on a cure to change them back. It would save the rest of humanity Sir”.

“In my 4 years as president this is the toughest choice I have ever had to make. Call for a press conference…”

ZMAPP now available! Millions of lives saved…
…Side-effects alarming, CDC cautions governments to keep patients confined in strongholds till an antidote is found.
Ebola eradicated…

The US President is pacing around the Oval Office, not caring about his aides. This can’t be happening…
“Sir we just received a report that the east wing is under attack, we have to go NOW!”

The Nigerian President is riding in his convoy on his way to his country home. It’s so nice to not have to worry about anything else than politics that he has decided that a long car ride with many stop-overs will be just the thing his image and his eyes need. Besides since the shooting down of planes became rampant, his love for flying has gone down to zero. He remembers his private jet gathering dust.

He looks out the window as the convoy stops. It’s just bushes and trees.
“Why are we stopping?”
“Sir there is a man on the road, he looks mad. He is standing in the middle of the road”
“Then get him to move”
“Sir Agent Chuks just tried but the mad man bit his neck, we need to get him to the hospital”
“Oya take one car, also restrain that mad man before he hurts someone else”
“Sir, Agent Akari shot the mad man in the chest but but…”
The car phone went dead.
Mr President looked at the aides beside him.
“What is going on out there?”
There were screams and suddenly four people ran past the car, clothes torn.
“W…was that..?” Mr President couldn’t finish his statement or even believe his eyes.
He had just seen three of his most trusted aides who looked like they were stark raving mad and the fourth person had a bullet hole in his chest. That wasn’t possible.
The driver of his car suddenly pressed the accelerator.
“Chief we have to ditch the convoy, we are under attack.”
The last Mr President saw was his entire convoy biting themselves in the neck and acting all crazy. He felt the gut-wrenching pull of vomitus and clutched his belly. What was happening?

ANOTHER WAR!

And then Tosin woke up. “Olorun maje, thank God it was only a dream.” His only reality now was to make money and not get Ebola…

What is your reality? Some people are living with HIV, Cancer or some other life-threatening disease, others are constantly afraid of terrorist attacks or mourning the loss of a dear one. Yet others prepare for a hurricane about to hit or try to recover from a massive earthquake. What is your reality? Is it the Ebola virus, or poverty or fear of Boko Haram or maybe something worse? Remember that your destiny is in your hands. Here are 5 very important survival tips:

  1. #StopEbola. Wash your hands, protect yourself. Do not send useless broadcasts that are neither scientific nor spiritual. Decide not to spread fear or killer practices. Confirm every piece of information before passing it on knowing that not everyone is as knowledgeable as you are and some are easily persuaded
  2. Pray and think positive thoughts. Asking God to take control of a difficult situation brings calm and solutions. There is nothing God cannot do. Having faith doesn’t mean you won’t take proper precautions please. Remember that it is the same God who gives man knowledge and ideas about preserving our own humanity.
  3. Be thankful. Appreciate the people around you and the people who care about you. Be thankful that you are even alive right now and not in harm’s way. And call those you care about from time to time to educate them and see how they are doing.
  4. #Bringbackourgirls- more than a hundred days later, they must never think they have been forgotten, our prayers are with them. Do something worthwhile. Join a cause worth fighting for. No one prays to die early but if you were ever gonna die before your time then you should be remembered for something awesome!
  5. Watch the news. Less social media, more international awareness. And while you are at it, read the book of Revelations again.

Stay safe Chutzpah fam,
Xoxoxo

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Posted by on August 8, 2014 in Health

 

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EBOLA VIRUS- The Serial Killer Gets Shipped To Lagos!

EBOLA VIRUS- The Serial Killer Gets Shipped To Lagos!

TOPSHOTS-GUINEA-HEALTH-EBOLA

 

His name was Patrick Sawyer, a Liberian who died yesterday in Lagos from a suspected case of the newest epidemic- Ebola. May his soul R.I.P.

Ebola is a virus which causes the Ebola Virus Disease or Ebola Hemorrhagic fever; the symptoms of the disease include fever, sore throat, muscle pains, headaches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea along with decreased functioning of the liver and kidneys and as the disease progresses, the affected person begins to bleed from any or all of the following – mouth, nose, ears, eyes, skin, internal bleeding, prolonged bleeding from wounds etc. Death inevitably occurs in about a week, as there is no known vaccination or cure at present.

Can you catch Ebola?

Yes! A person can get Ebola by eating contaminated bush meat or touching a contaminated corpse or coming in contact with contaminated blood or body fluids of an infected animal such as a monkey or fruit bat (farmers and hunters beware) and even pigs but that isn’t why we are all worried after all how many average Nigerians get to do any of these things.

Well here is the problem: EBOLA IS SPREAD FROM ONE INDIVIDUAL TO ANOTHER BY PHYSICAL CONTACT!

–          If you touch a person who has Ebola virus, you will be at risk. (Think about the health workers who treated the Liberian man and initially didn’t know he was infected and then think of all the other people they could have touched- in the hospital, at home, in the bus etc.) THANKFULLY, DOCTORS OBEY UNIVERSAL PRECAUTIONS and wash their hands after seeing a patient. The question is, do you?

–          Men who survive an infection with Ebola (yes, a few people do survive, the disease kills 50-90% of infected victims) may be able to transmit the disease sexually for nearly two months. GIRLFRIENDS, WIVES and SIDECHICKS BEWARE!

Ok so now you see the magnitude of the problem. The dude who shook your hand could have Ebola. The lady who touched you may be infected. The caretaker trying to get that body to the morgue may be joining him soon and the doctors, nurses and the other members of the health team are very much at risk. The brave doctor who was spearheading the Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone has been infected by the virus and his predecessor died of Lassa fever (Ebola’s brother). If you felt the Nigerian doctors were being greedy by asking for a meaningful hazard allowance, think again. The money won’t stave off death but at least it would show the risk they were taking was duly compensated!

So how can you prevent catching the disease and how can you help curb the epidemic?

  1. Wash your hands with soap and water and if you can help it carry an alcohol-based hand sanitizer in your bag so that every time you touch an individual, you disinfect your hands.
  2. Forget about bush meat right now. Do not visit joints that offer exotic meat. Yes I know it tastes great with palm wine but dead men don’t drink remember? (Libation doesn’t count!)
  3. If you suspect your neighbor has Ebola or even your family or friends, do not take them to a chemist, please take them straight to a teaching hospital AND DO NOT TOUCH THEM OR THEIR BLOOD, FAECES, URINE, TEARS, SPUTUM OR SWEAT and if you have been in close contact with them, avoid contact with others till you are sure you didn’t catch it.
  4. Health workers please observe UNIVERSAL PRECAUTIONS abeg!!! Avoid contact with blood and body fluids of infected individuals.
  5. Don’t touch the dead body of an infected person.
  6. Do not travel to a place where an Ebola epidemic has broken out (Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan)
  7. Avoid touching contaminated materials and utensils used by an infected person.
  8. Call 08057886636, 08023169485, 08033086660, 08033065303, 08055281442, 08055329229 to report a case or ask questions.

Ebola virus is highly infectious and contagious and it has no cure. Please stay safe!

Don’t panic, just stay calm and wash your hands, thank God it isn’t air-borne!

Have a lovely night Chutzpah fam,

xoxo

 
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Posted by on July 25, 2014 in Health

 

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