09 November, 2011

A Visit To the Skin Doctor

As I mentioned in my previous post, we made a trip to Orange Walk Town to visit the dermatologist. Dianna, Loreta, Barb, and myself all had appointments with Dr. Peter Craig, Dermatologist with Belize Healthcare Partners, Ltd., of Belize City.

He comes up to Orange Walk on Tuesdays and to San Ignacio on Saturdays, making it easier for clients such as us to see him without having to trek all the way to Belize City.

We got to Orange Walk thanks to Loreta's quick thinking - borrowing Judy's Explorer as my Isuzu's A/C fan had given up the ghost. We took advantage of the trip to combine a bit of shopping with the medical visitations.

Our first stop was to Belize Comex Paints, Ltd., paint shop. Dianna bought a gallon of a pretty blue to paint our bathroom. What's nice about Comex Paints is that they do the pigment mixing by computer and they keep your paint purchases on computer, just in case you need to re-order the same color in the future. Loreta bought three or four pints of paint that looked like pints of sherbet ice cream.

From there we went to the Boundary Store, Belizes version of Good Will or Value Village, but a major shopping stop anytime we go to Orange Walk. You always find stuff just not available anywhere in Belize.

Our next stop was to People's Grocery, to pick up some other items. People's isn't quite the major stop that it used to be. The stores in Corozal nowadays carry much of the same stuff that People's used to be the only place around to carry the items. They still have some things that are available now and then or not at all in Corozal. So, it's still worth the stop.

After People's, then it was time to head over to the clinic to visit with the doctor. The clinic is easy to find - if you know where Candy's Ice Cream Parlor is located (it's across the street). If you don't know where Candy's is, it's tough to find. There's no sign indicating a doctor shop is there.

Anyway, we got into the clinic and after a bit, one at a time we got to be examined by Dr. Craig.

A bit of an aside here. Dr. Craig doesn't have an "M.D." after his name. But that is no cause for alarm. He has an M.B.B.S. What's that, you might ask? Well, simply put, it's a professional degree awarded in the U.K. and many Commonwealth countries for the practice of medicine is that of Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS as well as other acronyms). This degree typically requires between four and six years of study and clinical training, and is equivalent to the North American MD degree.

It's about the same as the difference between a Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) and a Doctor of Medical Dentistry (DMD). The basic difference there is what dental school a person graduated from, not a difference in qualifications.

Dr. Craig also holds a MTM & H (Master of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene) degree and a Master of Science degree. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology. His specialty is in tropical medicine and diseases.

So, each of us got a visit with Dr. Craig. I think each of us got the usual keratosis pilaris growths burned off. Well, I guess 'burned off' is wrong. Dr. Craig froze them using liquid nitrogen. In about 8 days or so, the growths should more or less just fall off.

He examined us head to foot, looking for melanomas, etc. Basically, we all came out with clean bills of health. A nice feeling to have that taken care of. Dr. Craig does want to see Dianna in about four weeks to make sure he got all of the growth on her temple zapped the first time around. So, probably another shopping trip involving the Boundary.

I've already plugged in to our calendar to schedule our next annual visit with him.

Costs were very reasonable. the Office visit and consultation was $70.00 BZD each, with the treatments, costing an additional $75.00 BZD each. Just can't beat the prices with a stick, y'know?

While one or the other of us was in with the doctor, the rest of us went up the road to a clothing shop where they were having a 'One Dollar' sale. Every item was only $1.00 BZD. I got two tropical shirts. The girls got swim suits and various other things. Just hard to beat those prices.

After the doctor's visits, we had worked up a powerful appetite. Off we went, again, to Carlos' Pizzeria. Bummer... As we pulled up, we saw the gate to the restaurant was closed. As luck would have it, they're closed on Tuesdays. Well, all was not lost. We just changed course for Nahil Mayab restaurant - another favorite of ours.

From there it was a nice drive back to Corozal. We realized after we got home, that we were exhausted. A long, busy day. Time relax on the front porch and time for a Belikin. 

Cheers. 

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