Thailand for farang

My first hospital experience in rural Thailand

A few months ago I’ve hurt my knee while I ran down from a mountain and was playing football a lot. I waited for my mom to be in Thailand to go to the hospital to have somebody take a look at it. I can have normal daily conversations, but going to the doctor and explaining what hurts isn’t one of them.

In December my mom and dad accompanied me to a hospital in Nakhon Sawan. Because we figured there would be more doctors who are able to speak English.

After registration a nurse checked my pulse, asked what happened and wrote down what I told her. She asked me what I was doing when I hurt my knee. I told her I was playing football a lot and ran up and down a mountain. Then she asked me “Which mountain?”. I thought she couldn’t be serious, but the look on her face was telling me otherwise. My mother answered that question, because I found it too ridiculous to answer. After she asked me all the questions that were on the form she said “So you fell when running down the mountain”. I told her I did not fall and she wrote something down in Thai.

After that I went to a doctor. His English was very good. He asked me again where I got hurt when I fell. I told him again I did not fall. He nodded, wrote something down and he told me to take an X-ray.

The nurse who was going to take my X-ray asked me on which knee I fell. At that point I was so annoyed and just pointed at my right knee. She took the pictures and told me to go back to the doctor.

The doctor showed me the pictures they took and told me the good news was that I didn’t break anything when I fell. I repeated I didn’t fall. He nodded again and told me it’s not my bones so it must be my muscles or tendons. He gave me some pills and told me not to practice any sports for the next 2 weeks.

Two weeks went by but it didn’t heal. I was too busy with work and receiving guests the 2 months after that. But as it didn’t heal I went back to the hospital last week. There was another doctor, who I think understood that I didn’t fall as he immediately checked my muscles and tendons. He told me it was a tear in my knees outer tendon and sent me to physical therapy.

lazer Getting laser treatment includes funny space goggles.

The physical therapists are all very nice. One of the physical therapists talked to me about sports. She told me the men who play volleyball are not men. So I asked her if she maybe meant ladyboys or tomboys. She shook her head and whispered ‘gay men’. Laughed and told her gay men are men too. She looked very confused and said ‘No, they never love me.’. I laughed again but didn’t try anymore, because I was only confusing her. And her way of thinking confused me.

knee I’m smiling because they are all nice and I finally know what’s wrong with my knee.

At physical therapy they told me not to walk on my leg for 2 weeks. When my husband asked if I should get crutches they said I would fall. We both laughed, but stopped as soon as we knew they were being serious. I asked them how I could walk without using my leg. They told me to place my foot not completely on the floor and don’t put weight on it while I walk. It is so confusing! I don’t know how to do that so I’m still standing there.

I’m joking ofcourse. I just bought a crutch and try to stay in the couch for 2 weeks, which is quite boring. But I hope it will heal faster, cause I planned a road trip next month. Keeping that in mind I’m staying put. Besides nobody told me I can’t have a beer in the couch. So cheers to that and crossing my fingers for the check up on wednesday.

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